Is a Valuation the Same as a Survey?

A toy house with a magnifying glass and floor plans

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.

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