Is a Valuation the Same as a Survey?

Often valuations and surveys are mistakenly used as interchangeable terms, however there are large differences between the 2. In this blog you will find out the differences and which is the right path for the property you own or the property you are trying to purchase. 

So, is valuation the same as survey? Often mistaken for being the same, RICS property valuations don’t provide the same in depth information as property surveys. A valuation’s purpose is to report on the visual analysis of the property to determine the market value. Surveys detail the defects of the property and how they can be resolved before the property is sold or bought. 

Read on to learn more about the differences between property valuations and surveys.

What is the Difference Between Valuation and Survey?

Home owners may not know the difference between RICS property valuation and survey due to it not being made clear and, as a result, use the terms interchangeably. However, RICS property valuations and surveys have very different purposes. Below we have detailed the process and purpose of both property valuations and surveys so you can understand which is the correct path to go down when selling or buying a property.

RICS Property Valuations

The purpose of a RICS property valuation is to ascertain the property’s market value. It involves a RICS property valuer performing a visual inspection and analysis of a property. They use this inspection to create a detailed report on their findings to work out the property’s market value and determine how to share any joint assets, if relevant, when the property is sold. 

It is strongly recommended that you have a RICS property valuation before selling property to ensure you have the correct market value and help the selling process go smoothly, saving you both money and time. Property valuations should only take around 30 minutes to complete and the detailed report should be delivered within 6 working days.

You are likely to require a RICS property valuation when you are trying to secure a loan against your property as the loan company may request a secured lending valuation. If you are purchasing a property, it is important to ensure that you don’t overpay, so getting a valuation report can help you determine the value. When you are on the selling end of a property, you also want to make sure that your selling price is fair for buyers. 

If you are trying to work out how to equally split the value of a joint owned property, a matrimonial valuation also known as an expert witness valuation*, can be used in the case of divorce proceedings. A valuation may also be needed when you are reporting on companies’ assets to provide the current market value of the property.

Standard RICS property valuations start from:

  • £349 for up to a 2-bed property
  • £369 for a 3-bed property
  • £399 for a 4-bed property
  • £449 for a 5-bed property

*Fees for expert witness valuations differ from the standard RICS property valuations. Please contact us for a quote for an expert witness.

Check our website for more information on RICS Property Valuations with Crest Surveyors.

Property Surveys

Property surveyors assess the condition of a building to determine if it is suitable for occupants, and use that information to create a comprehensive report. There are 3 different kinds of property surveys that you may require, that varies depending on the type of property that you are trying to buy or sell:

RICS Homebuyers Survey

Homebuyers surveys are used to assess every part of the property to evaluate its condition to help potential buyers make an informed decision. Depending on the size of the property, homebuyers surveys start from £529. Every accessible part of the property within the boundary is also assessed including the pavement surrounding the property. Any hidden defects such as timber decay and damp should be identified during the survey.

You could need a homebuyer survey for the purchase of properties built within the last 50 years and for standard construction homes. If you are unsure about the condition of a property you are wanting to purchase, it would be strongly recommended to have a homebuyer survey so you know that it is safe to live in. Other reasons to get a homebuyers survey include determining the extent of renovation needed, or to negotiate a lower purchase price.

Building Survey

Building surveys are an in depth analysis which determine any defects, damage or potential issues with the property which affects the suitability of living. This type of property survey is recommended for buildings over 100 years old, and for properties that have been altered or extended. If you are aware that the building has a history of structural damage or if you suspect it, a building survey can give you an accurate report of the damage. 

Building surveys start from:

  • £699 for up to a 2-bed property
  • £759 for a 3-bed property
  • £889 for a 4-bed property
  • £989 for a 5-bed property
  • Properties over £1million are charged at a higher fee.

Defect Analysis Survey

Defect analysis surveys can be conducted on both residential and commercial properties to detail any defects for owners and buyers to ensure they make informed decisions. Starting from £450, defect analysis surveys detect many issues including, dampness, structural issues, roof covering defects, downpipe and gutter defects to name a few.

The survey helps determine how serious defects are, what is causing the problem and recommended solutions for fixing the defect. The implications of leaving the defect as it is will also be included in the report along with a suitable time frame before it becomes a bigger issue.

Are Both Valuations and Surveys Required?

Although a RICS property valuation provides a detailed report on the visuals of a property, it will not list any faults or issues, so may not be sufficient enough on its own. If you are purchasing a property, you may choose to only have a valuation so you know that you are not paying over the market value. However, you won’t have details on any problems with the property that can affect your quality of life and safety.

It is strongly recommended that you have a combination of valuation and survey to ensure that you get all of the information required for the market value and whether it is suitable and safe for new occupants. 

RICS Property Valuations and Surveys at Crest Surveyors

At Crest Surveyors, all of our surveyors are members of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), providing RICS property valuations and property surveys . This means that not only do you receive a service second to none, but also receive the quickest and most cost-effective solutions for your survey and valuation needs.

Enquire today to find out how we can determine the value of your property, or ring us on 020 3940 1118.

Do I Need a Surveyor For Shared Ownership?

Purchasing or selling properties for the first time can be complicated, nevermind when you are under a shared ownership. As such, it is important to know the legal requirements regarding chartered surveying when you are under a shared ownership.  In this article, we discuss whether or not you actually need a surveyor for shared ownership. 

So, do I need a surveyor for shared ownership? If you own a property under a Help to Buy Scheme or Shared Ownership Scheme, and are looking to sell your shares or purchase more shares, you will need a surveyor. It is a legal requirement that a RICS chartered surveyor completes an independent valuation on shared ownership properties to justify the value before moving forward. 

Keep reading to learn more about surveys for shared ownerships, including what a shared ownership valuation involves, and what happens if you don’t agree with the lender’s valuation. 

Page Jumps:

Do I Need a Surveyor For Shared Ownership?

What is a Shared Ownership Valuation? 

What does a Shared Ownership Valuation Include? 

What Happens if You Don’t Agree with the Lenders Valuation? 

Do I Need a Surveyor For Shared Ownership?

If you have purchased a property under a shared ownership agreement, such as a Help to Buy Scheme, and are wanting to sell it, or want to buy more shares in the property (also known as staircasing), you will require a valuation. In this case, it is a legal requirement that the property must be surveyed by a RICS registered surveyor. This will ensure that an independent valuation is provided for the property and factored into the mortgage valuation when the property is sold. 

If you wish to sell off, or buy more shares in your property, the chartered surveyor completing the valuation must be registered under RICS. This is important because it will ensure that a valuation is formed with no bias towards either party. The RICS’s qoverning body is a globally recognised governing body, that promotes some of the highest standards in property surveying, so you can be confident that you will be receiving a fair and accurate valuation on your shared ownership property. The Government normally part-owns shares within Help to Buy properties, therefore they will arrange their own surveyor to visit your property to calculate a valuation. It is important that you arrange for an independent surveyor to complete a valuation on your behalf, to cross reference against the other party’s valuation.

What is a Shared Ownership Valuation? 

A shared ownership valuation is an independent valuation that is completed when someone wishes to buy more shares of, or completely sell their property, which falls under a Help to Buy Scheme or a Shared Ownership Scheme. The valuation takes into consideration the condition of the property and other aspects such as the area, to calculate a numerical value for the property. From this, an agreement can be formed, and a price can be offered for the buyer to purchase more shares in their property or for them to sell their property. 

What does a Shared Ownership Valuation Include? 

When a shared ownership valuation is completed accurately, it takes into account a variety of factors which are then used in the calculation of the valuation. It is important that each of the factors are considered properly because if one is missed out it may significantly affect the figure of the valuation, which may result in the owner paying more for additional shares than they should be. Below we have detailed the main factors that should be considered in a shared ownership valuation. 

Inspection of the Location and Construction of the Property: A local chartered surveyor will be required to complete an inspection of the location and construction of the property. This can include assessing the local amenities, landmarks, and transportation accessibility as well as recognising any key issues with the structure of the property. These two factors can alter the value of the surveying significantly, especially if the area is well-known for crime or the property has a serious structural issue that could affect the future of the property. 
Overview of the Properties General Conditions with Photos Taken:A local chartered surveyor will be required to complete an inspection of the location and construction of the property. This can include assessing the local amenities, landmarks, and transportation accessibility as well as recognising any key issues with the structure of the property. These two factors can alter the value of the surveying significantly, especially if the area is well-known for crime or the property has a serious structural issue that could affect the future of the property. 
Details of 3 Similar Nearby Properties: As part of the shared ownership valuation, the chartered surveyor will also need to identify 3 similar properties in the area that are close in size, age, and type. The 3 properties must also be within a 2 mile radius of the property being valued to ensure that there is a realistic comparability between the locations of the properties. By identifying 3 similar properties in the area, the surveyor will have some guidance on what similar properties are valued at and this can be very useful in calculating the property valuation. 
Valuation of the Property:Once all of these factors have been considered, the RICS chartered surveyor will come to a decision on a valuation of the property. This should include a detailed description of any issues found in the property alongside evidence in the form of photographs. Assumptions made on the property in terms of area or structural problems such also be explained in this section too. 

What Happens if You Don’t Agree with the Lenders Valuation? 

In most cases, under a shared ownership valuation, the chartered surveyor will come to a similar valuation as the surveyors provided by the Government. However, on some occasions they may not agree, so it can be helpful to know what your options are. Below we have explained the options you have if you don’t agree with the valuation provided. 

Provide Evidence of 3 other Properties: 

If you do not agree with the valuation provided by the Government, one of your options would be to contest it by providing evidence of 3 other similar properties. These properties must be similar in size, age and location to be considered truthfully comparable, but if so they can be a great argument for disputing the lender’s valuation. 

Send the Valuation to the Government:

If the lender is from a private company, you can gather your evidence and send it across to the Government to be appealed. The Government can then assess the information and recommend an alternative valuation if they find it appropriate to do so. This may not work in your favour every time, but is still an option. 

Cease the Application and Request Another with a New Surveyor: 

If at this point you are still not pleased with the valuation you have received, you can cease your application and restart the whole process. This might seem like a tedious process but it means that you will be able to request a different surveyor. It is important to note that you cannot request a specific surveyor but you can request an alternative one. If you truly believe that the valuation is not accurate, then this can be a way of getting a different opinion. 

Shared Ownership Valuation Surveyors at Crest Surveyors

Crest Surveyors are experienced RICS registered chartered surveyors who can be trusted with RICs property valuations and Shared Ownership Surveying. Providing both independent and honest valuations for your shared ownership properties, means that you can feel confident when looking to sell or buy more shares in your property. 

If you are interested in our Shared Ownership Surveyor services, click here to find out more.