The ISVA HomeSurvey is broadly equivalent to RICS ‘Survey Level Two’ and is available exclusively from members of the Independent Surveyors’ and Valuers’ Association.
The information is provided in a straightforward report format, which is easy to read and understand. It is divided into numbered sections and will comment upon those major defects and shortcomings that might affect your decision to purchase. Near to the beginning, the report includes the ‘Surveyor’s Overall Opinion’, which is a general overview of the property. At the end, the ‘Summary of Condition and Recommendations’ brings together the most important findings under three headings:
These are matters that in the opinion of the surveyor should be remedied as soon as possible after you have completed the purchase of the property.
Matters Requiring Further Investigation
These are matters that in the opinion of the surveyor will require further investigation before you make a legal commitment to the purchase.
These are items that in the opinion of the surveyor do not have an immediate impact on the performance of the building but which may prove to be a significant future liability and which could affect purchase negotiation.
The report is based on a visual inspection of as much of the interior and exterior of the building as is reasonably and safely accessible. A full description of the service is given in the Terms and Conditions of Engagement leaflet, which your surveyor will provide but the report will include:
- Comments on the internal and external condition of the property (including an overview of the service installations).
- Comments on any major defects or other shortcomings likely to affect your decision to purchase the property.
- Comments on the overall condition of any permanent outbuildings and in relation to the site.
- Any particular points or issues that you should refer to your legal adviser
The option to include an opinion of the Market Value of the property; if required by the client and if the surveyor agrees to provide this service.
- The option to include the estimated rebuilding (or “reinstatement”) cost of the property for buildings insurance purposes; if required by the client and if the surveyor agrees to provide this service.
This type of report is suitable for most conventionally built residential properties, constructed since around 1900. Properties that are unusual, by virtue of their design or construction or those that are particularly large might require a more detailed report, such as a Building Survey. Your surveyor will advise you further in this respect, during the preliminary discussion. You can download sample Terms and Conditions of Engagement.
A copy of the HomeSurvey template and a typical report can be obtained by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.