What is a Building Survey?
A building survey is the most comprehensive survey you can have for a property, and is particularly suited for older properties. It looks at all aspects of the property and usually includes any problems together with suggested repair implications. Obviously the exact details of what will be covered will depend on the Surveyor chosen, and it is really important to check any Surveyor you choose has the appropriate qualifications, experience and expertise to meet your particular requirements. It is also worth checking exactly what is included in the report. Some Surveyors will include photographs automatically, whilst some only do so if you specifically ask for them.
What is a Homebuyer Survey?
A homebuyer survey covers a couple of different types of survey, so you need to make sure you know what you want before placing any orders.
A HomeBuyer Report (which can also include a valuation as an addition) is provided by RICS approved Surveyors. This will not include as much detail as a Building Survey, but typically does highlight anything that will have a affect on the value of the property or anything that will require further attention. it only covers areas that can be seen without having to take any further action - so they will not drill into walls or lift up carpets.
A Homebuyer Survey could be provided by a non-RICS registered Surveyor, or by a Home Inspector or Energy Assessor. This does not have a standard format, and so you will really need to discuss your requirements prior to the commencement of any work to make sure you are getting everything you need.