What is a stock condition survey?

If you live in a rental or social-housing property, then you may be asked to prepare for a stock condition survey to take place in your home. All social housing properties within the UK are required to fall within the ‘Decent Home Standard’ as part of the law. This includes ensuring that your home is an adequate size, has a kitchen that is 20 years old or less, possess sufficient heating and ventilation, and more. This can often be a routine inspection, so it’s best to be clued up on what to expect, and why they’re required in the first place. 

So what exactly is a housing stock condition survey? A stock condition housing survey, otherwise known as a stock condition report (SCR) is a detailed visual inspection of the inside and outside of a property. They are typically used in rental properties to check for damages or any maintenance issues that need attention. 

Usually, a SCR does not take longer than 30-minutes to complete, but we understand that they may feel invasive and intrusive. Despite this, they are solely designed to help ensure that your property is of a reasonable standard. To help you learn more about this survey, and why they are used, our expert team at Crest Chartered Surveyors have written this short guide for you to explore. Simply keep reading to learn more about SCR’s. 

What is a Stock Condition Housing Survey for?

The standard of social housing in the UK has been in a state of disrepair since the 1980s. In the early 2000s, this issue began to be confronted with the emergence of the Social Housing Green Paper, followed by the approved Social Housing White Paper, which was approved in late 2020. Completed with the Levelling Up White Paper, a new set of reviews and guidelines were issued that required full reviews of social housing, and an urgency to address the improvements to living standards. 

The result was the use of a Housing Stock Condition Survey to provide a quick, yet thorough visual inspection of a property by an impartial, RICS-qualified professional. This survey is typically paid for by landlords or housing managers and is a great way to ensure that properties are being maintained and meet the current living standards. After the inspection, your Chartered Surveyor will write a report detailing all findings, a review of the current living condition, and a list of any maintenance issues if any are unveiled. 

What is inspected in a Stock Condition Housing Survey?

During a SCR, all the rooms and cupboards inside your property will be visually inspected for defects or maintenance needs. In particular, your RICS-trained surveyor will examine:

  • Cracks
  • Damp
  • Unpleasant smells
  • Spongy floors
  • Crooked walls
  • Appliances
  • Heating systems
  • Doors
  • Windows
  • Ventilation

The outside of the property will also be examined. This will include:

How long do they usually take?

The duration of your inspection will depend entirely on the size of your property. Usually, they do not last longer than 30 minutes to 1 hour. You don’t need to do anything to prepare for your inspection; they are solely used to check if there are any issues for the landlord or property management company to address, such as if appliances are not working properly, or if any defects need fixing. 

What happens if a surveyor finds a problem?

Following your survey, a report will be sent to the landlord or property manager that details all findings, including the current condition of the property, and any defects that require maintenance. Finding minor defects during inspections is normal, and typically nothing to worry about. 

Who pays for any issues to be resolved will depend on your situation. If you live in social housing, then it’s usually the responsibility of your landlord or property manager to pay for any repairs. If you rent privately, then who pays depends on who caused the damage. For example, if the damage was caused by the tenant, then it will be their responsibility to pay. On the other hand, if the damage in question falls under property maintenance, then they will be required to fix any issues. If you have any questions, your surveyor will be able to provide you with more information. 

Enquire for your Stock Condition Housing Survey with Crest Chartered Surveyors in London

If you’re looking for a RICS-qualified surveyor to carry out a Stock Condition Housing Survey on your property, then get in touch with one of our valued team members today. Our tailored service includes a consultation, a full valuation and a completed report detailing our findings. We provide ourselves with cost-effective, high-quality service that’s accessible for all those available in London and the surrounding counties. 

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