Types of Homebuyer Survey in Northern Ireland?

Types of Homebuyer Survey in Northern Ireland?

Buying a property will most likely be the biggest investment you will ever make. For many people it is a dream to own their own home, however, if you do not do your homework on the property, that dream could quickly turn into a nightmare. It is estimated that 17% of homebuyers who do not undertake a survey prior to purchase end up having to fork out in excess of £12,000 in order to just make their home habitable. For many of us who have just bought a home, we do not have the disposable income to sort these issues quickly so we can move in.. 

The demand for pre-purchase surveys is increasing with more and more people starting to understand the importance of identifying potential issues before they complete a home purchase. This allows the buyer to negotiate on price, have the problem rectified by the seller or have an understanding of the investment required following purchase. 

What are the Types of Homebuyer Survey in Northern Ireland?

The most common type of surveys in Northern Ireland are RICS Surveys which are essentially property health checks. There are three levels of survey and as with many services, the more you pay the more you will get with Level 3 being the most comprehensive: 

  • Level 1 Survey – Condition Survey 
  • Level 2 Survey – Home buyer survey
  • Level 3 Survey – A full Building or Structural Survey 

The level of survey you get may depend on your budget or the age/condition of the property that you are investing in. However, even if the property appears to be well maintained, these surveyors may spot structural issues or problems which are not easily identified. If you are purchasing older properties, you should be aware that the building regulations were not as strict during the period that the building was constructed, therefore you may be required to make alterations to bring the property up to current standards. 

You can find a registered RICS Surveyor by clicking here.

Other types of Surveys 

In addition to the RICS home surveys, there are a range of specialist surveys which focus in on one specific element of the building that there is concern about. These specific issues are usually raised during an RICS report or you may identify an issue when viewing a property. These investigations usually confirm the presence of an issue with specialist knowledge and equipment, giving you the information that you require. Some examples include: 

  • Heating System Survey
  • Asbestos Surveys 
  • Damp Surveys 
  • Drain Surveys
  • Invasive Weed Survey 
  • Snagging Surveys 
  • Thermographic Surveys 
  • Acoustic Testing 
  • Air Leakage Tests 
  • Electrical Surveys 


Spending money on these types of survey when purchasing a property seems like an unnecessary cost, but undertaking this due diligence will almost certainly avoid you inheriting a costly issue and give you peace of mind!