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House Floor Plans: What’s the Problem?

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What’s the problem with house floor plans?

We’re here to tell you exactly what – setting the record straight once and for all.

Time to say goodbye to the days of misleading information!

Don’t take house plans at face value

Each estate agent will commission a specialist floor plan company to come in and measure up the property.

Results will vary; discrepancy can affect the value of the property. Asking prices are often decided by using a pounds per square metre referencing tool.

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Why is there a difference in floor plans?

What is the discrepancy down to? Is it bad measuring devices? Bad maths? Dodgy ethics from the floor plan company/estate agent?

Unfortunately, there are no set rules or regulations for determining floor space and creating a floor plan. The accuracy is entirely reliant on the surveyor, their tools and software used to create the plan.

The difference between two floor plans

In a past survey of over 200 properties carried out by Energy in Demand (analysed by the Financial Times), more than half had floor plans much larger or smaller than another agent selling the same property. The difference between two floor plans could be as large as 300 square foot.

Why do home plans vary?

So what are the reasons for discrepancies?

Companies have different policies regarding walk-in wardrobes and utility rooms – to name two examples. Some counted them, some didn’t.

On further investigation, there are other extras which may or may not be included by floor plan companies, including:

  • Roof terraces
  • Hallways
  • Staircases
  • Outbuildings
  • Storage facilities
  • Attics, eaves or alcoves
  • Plans with open spaces

There are no prices guaranteed – it entirely depends on the company!

If your dream home is dependent on square footage, many buyers may have paid for space they can’t use, or even worse, doesn’t exist.

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What are the consequences?

Evidently, with all the inconsistencies and inaccuracies, buyers and tenants can be led to believe that a property is bigger than it is.

Size is often a hugely determining factor in how much someone is willing to pay for their home. So, many of us end up spending more than we should.

Alternatively, you may find you don’t have enough space for all your belongings, as you’ve been given false measurements about the size of your home.

How is the RICS working to solve the problem?

Luckily, there’s a solution, provided by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

Its new guide known as Measurement Matters will help buyers and renters pay a fair price based on the accurate size of a home.

This will implement mandatory measurement standards, helping ensure home across the country are measured fairly.

This will:

  • Implement consistent and fair standards
  • Encourage property professionals to adopt the standard, to help protect buyers and tenants
  • Highlight the importance of renters and buyers checking who measured their property

The floor plan solution

So, what can you do?

Make sure you’re fully aware of what the existing floor plan does and doesn’t include. Get the estate agent to confirm exactly what space has been measured and ensure no unusable areas have been snuck in to boost the price. Don’t be afraid to arm yourself with a tape measure for the house viewing.

Most importantly – always inquire as to who has measured the property. Remember – this is your potential future home!

Moreover, when you instruct your survey, try asking your surveyor to check the accuracy of the estate agent’s floor plan.

Knowing the facts about a property can save you valuable time and money. 

Need a good surveyor? We can put you in touch with experienced, licensed professionals who can get the job done for you. Get your free surveyor quote below.

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Last Updated: August 12th, 2021