You’ve decided to buy a new build home. You will be the first to live in it – the smell of new carpets and fresh paint and the instruction manual still in the oven!
With all the costs associated with buying a house, you’ll want to make savings where you can. The developer may provide a snagging list, covering the property’s physical condition, and this might tempt you to skip a survey. But it doesn’t cover the issue of value.
To avoid unexpected costs and nasty surprises down the line, we’ll explain why it’s worth getting a property survey on your new build home.
Pros and cons of a new build property
One of the benefits of buying a new build property is that it’s less likely to require the same level of maintenance you would face with an older build. This may lead you to think that everything’s is in ship-shape condition.
But you should remember, a new-build home may not be ready for you to move straight into. Most developments are done to tight timelines and budgets – you or the developer could miss things.
A new-build snagging list helps check the physical specifications of the property and may even cover some structural reporting if you’re lucky.
But, buying a property is not just about appearance. It is also about value – you want to know you are paying the right price for the property. The developer’s list price is just an asking price after all.
This is when paying for a property survey as well as a snagging list, might just save you time and money. It could also help you negotiate a house price if any issues are flagged.
Are you paying too much for your new build?
Are you paying a ‘new build premium’ for example? This term suggests new build homes can be pricier than older, but otherwise similar properties.
Paying more than a property’s worth could see you struggle to sell it for the same amount in the future – you may even fall into negative equity. It may also stop you getting a mortgage in the first place.
Not checking on the value of the property and just relying on the snagging list may prove penny-wise and pound-foolish.
Physical and financial benefits of a survey
There are many different types of property survey, each varying in price and depth levels.
A homebuyer report costs on average £450 and can offer physical and financial peace of mind even on a new-build property.
If you choose a homebuyer report, including a snagging survey, the surveyor can identify any material issues. A homebuyer’s report tells you if there are any structural problems, such as subsidence or damp. It can also uncover other unseen issues inside and outside so it’s more thorough than a snagging list alone.
Having an expert look at the property at this stage could save you expensive repairs down the line. For example, if the report flags an issue with the damp-proof course, there will also be an estimate of how much it costs to fix. You can then use this to negotiate on the asking price.
Some homebuyers’ reports include a property valuation, so be sure to ask for one when booking your survey. This will compare the property’s price with similar ones locally and give a good idea if you are paying too much.
Using your homebuyers report, you are in a strong position to go back and renegotiate a price more in line with the valuation it gives, and hopefully, save some money!
Arm yourself with all the facts you can to make a well-informed decision not to pay over the odds, and get yourself the best deal.
Double up with a snagging survey
A snagging survey costs from £300 but, as the name suggests, just covers snagging. But if your surveyor does snagging surveys, they should be able to incorporate this as part of the homebuyer report.
You will want the significant issues dealt with by the homebuyer report, but you still want to make sure bathrooms and kitchens are correctly fitted! Snagging will ensure these details are handled.
Doubling up on a Snagging Survey and a Homebuyer Survey may seem like an unnecessary cost but may pay off in the long term.
Having a professional handle this for you means that they deal directly with the developer on any issues helping your purchase runs more smoothly and make sure the property is ready to live in.
Make sure your new build is right in every way
A house survey report can only tell you so much.
Knowing everything about the property and area can give you greater peace of mind. To help you decide, look at Phil Spencer’s Property Reports.
This will tell you everything about an area, from local schools to nearby planning applications. After all, you can change many things about a property, but not the area it’s in!
Need to find a surveyor?
It makes sense to get someone who knows what they are doing to inspect your new-build property.
Hiring an expert reduces the chance of any nasty surprises and helps ensure you and your mortgage lender will be happy. After all, you are about to make the most important financial investment of your life, so you’ll want to know everything – good or bad!
Unsure where to start? We can put you in touch with one of our RICS approved surveyors. Each one is professional and happy to help. Getting started couldn’t be easier, simply fill in your details! Get survey quotes for free below.
Last Updated: June 23rd, 2021