RICS Surveys

Buying a property is a major investment, whether you are purchasing a family home or buy-to-let property. The common law principle of caveat emptor (‘buyer beware’) puts the onus squarely on the buyer to investigate the property before signing on the dotted line, which is why having an independent survey carried out by a professional RICS accredited surveyor is highly recommended.

Why do I need a RICS survey?

Investing in property should never be undertaken lightly. Buildings can potentially have all sorts of issues that may not be obvious to the untrained eye. From timber defect to damp issues, outdated electrics to serious structural damage, only an independent survey will give you the peace of mind of knowing that an experienced Chartered Surveyor has taken a proper look and reported on their findings.

It is unfortunately the case that too many buyers don’t bother with a survey, especially if the property looks perfectly fine to them, and the mortgage valuation has thrown up no queries. This is a risky decision and one that could cost you dearly. The main benefits of a RICS property survey is that it will give you the necessary information regarding any defects, along with recommendations for remedial action, so that you can make the right decision on whether and how to proceed with the purchase.

Which RICS survey is best for me?

At SSJ Surveyors, we have a wealth of experience to put at your disposal. We offer the full range of RICS property survey, along with professional guidance to help you choose the best survey for your requirements.

  • RICS HomeBuyer Report: Best suited to properties of conventional construction that are in reasonable condition and have not been significantly altered, and where no significant defects are suspected
  • RICS Building Report: Recommended for older properties, non-standard properties or those that have been significantly altered or need substantial refurbishment

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) is a highly respected independent professional body, and the leading organisation of property professionals in the world. RICS membership requires a high degree of experience and education from its members. Members, including the experienced Chartered Surveyors at Silk Sharples Jennings, are closely regulated and each surveyor has to follow a strict code of conduct to ensure high standards.

Why choose Silk Sharples Jennings?

Silk Sharples Jennings have been surveying property for over 20 years, having amassed a wealth of specialist knowledge of properties in Shropshire and across the West Midlands. We deal with all kinds of residential and commercial property, providing impartial advice to clients who trust our independent professional judgement and expert technical skills.

Get in touch for more information

For details about any of our RICS Surveys, or to obtain a no-obligation quote, please contact Silk Sharples Jennings. You can reach our team by phone 01743 461777 or email info@ssjsurveyors.co.uk, or send us a short message via our Contact Us page.

Residential Property Surveys


Why do I need a survey?
Buying a home is one of the biggest financial decisions you will ever make. Having a detailed property survey carried out by an Independent Chartered Surveyor is undoubtedly one of the best and most cost-effective ways to protect your investment.

As independent Chartered Surveyors, Silk Sharples Jennings are not affiliated with any specific estate agents, banks or building societies, meaning we can assess a property’s condition with complete impartiality. That way, property buyers have complete peace of mind of knowing that the building in question has been thoroughly inspected by a qualified Chartered Surveyor.

We undertake a variety of surveys including Valuation Reports, Homebuyers Survey, Building Surveys (formerly known as Full Structural Surveys) and Building Defect Reports. Whether you are considering the purchase of an apartment in a modern block or a period conversion, a terraced, semi-detached or detached house, a newly built property, or a listed building, Silk Sharples Jennings Chartered Surveyors will conduct the right survey to ensure that you have all the relevant information at your disposal to make an informed judgment about whether and how to proceed with your purchase.

Undertaking the survey and delivering the report constitute the main part of the process. In addition, we feel the most important aspect is being available to discuss the survey findings with you, once you’ve had an opportunity to digest the report findings.

Surveys can be tailored to your specific requirements, although please refer to our general guide on the different types of surveys.
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Valuation Report

This type of inspection is primarily designed to determine the correct market value for the property. It includes a brief inspection of up to an hour to assess the basic construction and condition and advise on any obvious defects.
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Homebuyers Survey

This is the most popular survey for the majority of purchasers, delivered in a recognised survey format endorsed by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). The relatively detailed report consists of an assessment of individual elements of the property using a rating system ranging from 1-3 (1 – satisfactory, 2 – requiring repair as part of normal maintenance, 3 – requiring urgent repair or further investigation for a significant defect).

We will arrange for a site visit with an inspection duration of around 2-3 hours depending on the size and type of property. The survey report aims to highlight any significant defects found and give advice and direction as to the most appropriate action in terms of obtaining further quotes and information. The final report, which is presented in a standard report format of up to 15 pages, a valuation of the reinstatement cost for insurance purposes.

A Homebuyers Survey and Valuation is most suited to properties of conventional construction that were built less than 150 years ago, where there are no suspected major defects and where the property has not been significantly extended or altered.
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Building Survey

The RICS Building Survey was formerly known as a ‘full structural survey’. It is a detailed and comprehensive report on the construction of the property and any related defects. Not only is this the most in-depth investigation endorsed by the RICS, it delivers far more details and recommendations on how to approach any remedial work along with an overall indication of the potential costs involved.

A Building Survey inspection will normally take 3-5 hours depending on the size and type of the property. The report is more extensive and will incorporate photographs of the property to identify and illustrated defects where possible. While the Building Survey is suitable for all types of property, it is particularly suitable for larger buildings, structures that have been significantly extended or altered, or for older properties. Buildings of a more unusual or non-traditional construction should also be considered for this type of survey, as should those with a listed building designation.
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Building Defect Reports

There are occasions where a general survey may not be needed for purchase, or where a previous survey has highlighted a defect that now requires further or more skilled investigation. As Chartered Building Surveyors, SSJ offer specific Building Defect Reports relating to such areas as structural movement, cracking, drainage issues, damp penetration, or issues to do with isolated parts of the structure that require in-depth investigation. The report will be tailored to individual requirements and can be a more cost-effective option for situations where a general Building Survey may not be required.
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As Chartered Valuation Surveyors, Silk Sharples Jennings offer a full range of valuation services for private and commercial property clients.

We provide RICS compliant valuations for a variety of purposes depending on individual properties and circumstances including:

Reinstatement Cost Assessments/Insurance Valuations

For all enquiries regarding residential or commercial property valuations, please contact Mark Jennings MRICS.
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Silk Sharples Jennings are qualified Domestic Energy Assessors and undertake inspections to provide Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) for residential properties. These can be delivered on a larger scale to estate agents and letting agents, or on an individual basis to property owners and landlords. 

If you are looking for a detailed measured survey of your property in order to provide full building drawings, we are able to provide this as part of our architectural design services.
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