Congratulations on your recent home purchase! You’re probably over the moon about finally having a place to call your own. At the same time, you’re stressed to the max. A multitude of questions, concerns, and to do’s are racing through your mind at lightning speed.
How long will it take to pay off the mortgage? Which way will I arrange the sitting room furniture? Is my brother going to help me move? He better! Will this be as disastrous as when Tom Hanks bought that seemingly sound mansion in that 80’s movie?
The Money Pit is “that 80’s movie” just in case you were having a hard time remembering. You’ve got too much on your mind to be concerned with specific movie titles from nearly 30 years ago. Ol’ Tom would’ve been in much better shape if he’d had a house survey done before he sunk all his money into the place. It’s a good idea for you to splurge on one as well depending on which you need.
If you’re new home was recently built, say in the last decade or so, a condition report is best for you if you have no or minor concerns about the place. You gave it a good inspection yourself before you decided to buy, (you’re doing home buying wrong if you didn’t) and didn’t notice any cracks, leaks, or groaning pipes.
A condition report will do much the same but will catch a few things you may have missed. It’s the most basic of the home surveys, providing you peace of mind with a professional building surveyor’s opinion.
A Homebuyer’s Report is more in depth than a condition report. If you did notice some defects, seemingly minor at a glance, the building surveyor conducting the Homebuyer’s Report will give you advice on how to repair those defects. He or she will not be invasive with their inspection. So there’ll be no pulling up boards or moving furniture for a better look.
This house survey is best for you if you have minor concerns about your home’s structural integrity. It’s good for newer homes and some older ones as long as they’re in overall good condition.
Maybe you did buy a home like Tom Hanks. Beautiful but very old, and definitely in need of repair. A Buildings Survey is what you need because the building surveyor will perform an invasive inspection. He or she will get in that nasty crawlspace, pull up floorboards, and everything in between.
The surveyor will be thorough and advise you on the all the repairs required. You can also request projected costs and time needed to complete the repairs.
As with all things home buying related, the home surveys can be a little pricey. A condition report is the cheapest, Homebuyer’s Report is mid-range, and a Buildings Survey has the biggest price sticker. The prices of these surveys depends on the value of your home. Keep in mind they’re not the same as a mortgage valuation which tells lenders if the house is worth the lending amount. You’ll spend a lot of money over the years, but a new home is worth it.