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What is a house survey and do I need one?

Updated: Feb 1, 2022

What is a house survey and do I have to get one?

Two of the most common questions we get asked rolled into one!



So what is a house survey?


A house survey is essentially a full visual inspection of the condition of a property.

The survey is carried out by qualified surveyors, who are registered with a governing body, insured and experienced.

The surveyor will do a full walk around the property, inside and out, they’ll go into each room individually, they’ll get up into the attic to have a look around, and they’ll go outside to take a look at the roof and check the ground the property is built on as well as any boundary structures.

Detailed notes are taken on the condition of the property and any issues will be highlighted, any concern where they feel the condition is not up to standard will be flagged in the written report you will receive at the end.

Maybe most importantly, they’ll also flag and health and safety concerns they observe.

Another aspect of the survey is to highlight any planning issues or building regulation concerns.

Once the surveyor is finished in the property, they’ll type up a full report. This report gives you a full overall picture of the condition of the property so you are fully informed before signing any contracts.

Do I have to get one?

Technically, no.

A pre-purchase survey is not a legal requirement but they are advised.

In some cases your bank or lender will request one and in most cases your solicitor will strongly recommend you get one done to check certain issues such as planning regulations and building regulation compliance.

We regularly use the second-hand car analogy, if you’re planning on spending €300,000 on a second-hand car you’re going to want a mechanic to inspect it for you first.

They check that it works, the condition, the overall health and safety of the car and they’ll flag any concerns or things to look out for!

That's what you’re getting with a house survey, you’re paying for an expert in the building, maintenance and refurbishment of properties to come out and give you their professional opinion so you can decide whether you want to proceed with the sale.


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