Valuation survey: The complete guide

Set on your new dream home? It's a good idea to get a valuation survey done before you commit.

Valuation surveys, otherwise known as mortgage valuations, can give you a rough idea of whether you are paying too much (or too little) for a property.

In this guide, we’ll look specifically at what a valuation survey is, what type of property it can be used for and what it covers.

What is a valuation survey?

They are one of the most basic types of property survey available that will give you an accurate idea of the value of the property you’re interested in, along with any obvious damage.

This survey is as much for your mortgage provider as it is for you because it offers peace of mind that you aren’t paying over the odds.

Without a reliable valuation, it’s possible that your new purchase could be based on a false price, which could cause all sorts of issues for you and the mortgage provider.

What happens during a valuation survey?

This survey is not as detailed as the other types available, as it simply provides you with an overall valuation of the property and any obvious defects that could affect the price.

It’s important to note that it will not highlight any hidden problems, which is why a homebuyers survey is often recommended too.

For a valuation survey, the mortgage surveyor will only note down any obvious defects or damage that will affect the property’s price. You will not be advised on any maintenance or repair work needed.

The process will take between 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the size of the property. You should then receive the report within two to three working days.

Valuation surveys and mortgages

Getting a valuation survey is a vital part of getting a mortgage.

Knowing the value of the property you want to buy will show you whether what you have offered or what you plan on offering is a fair and reasonable price.

It’s also almost always required when making an application for a mortgage, in order for it to be successful.

What does a mortgage surveyor look for?

This survey is not as detailed as other types available, as it simply provides you with an overall valuation of the property and any obvious defects that could affect the price.

It will not highlight any hidden problems, which is why a homebuyers survey is often recommended. You can even ask for a valuation alongside the homebuyers report, ensuring you get more for your money.

The mortgage surveyor will only note down any obvious defects or damage that will affect the property’s price, so you will not be advised on any maintenance or repair work needed.

The condition of the property is observed and visible issues like damp, electrical problems and obvious structural damage are highlighted.

How much does a property valuation cost?

This will usually cost around £300-400 for an average house, priced between £100,000 and £249,000. As the valuation survey isn’t anywhere near as thorough and detailed as the other types of survey, it’s a fair amount cheaper.

What’s the difference between a valuation survey and other options?

A mortgage valuation may be all you choose to opt for, but as it goes into very little depth, it may be worth considering other options available to you.

Homebuyers survey

This is an excellent choice for the majority of homes. It often highlights the most common areas of concern based on the building’s general condition and it is relatively low cost, compared to the building survey anyway.

But remember that only areas that are easily accessible are surveyed, this means things like drains and under carpets are not assessed.

Building survey

This is the best option for older homes, those that may have structural issues or are built in an unconventional way. The survey will be comprehensive and thorough and can include projected costing and timelines for any repairs.

This option will be particularly useful if you plan to convert or extend the property.

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