If you own or are buying a property, then you will most likely at some point need the services of a chartered surveyor to survey and access the property condition. There are a variety of different surveyors, tailored to meet specific demands, therefore you will need to ascertain exactly what it is you need to ensure you have the most suitable surveyor.

Chartered surveyors are members of ‘The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors” (RICS) professional body, and as such have strict guidelines and codes of conduct to follow. When you are booking chartered surveyor services make sure that they are a member of this professional institute to ensure that you are working with a qualified professional and to give you some insurance that if your surveyor gives you bad advice, you have a professional body to go to for help and advice and most importantly, support. Furthermore, ensure that the qualifications the surveyor has are accredited by RICS and that they have at least 2 years of practical experience and have passed the APC exam.

There are a number of different reasons you may need to appoint a surveyor, here are a few:
• If you are selling your home you may want a surveyor’s report to show buyers, this will tell buyers exactly what condition the house is in, along with anything that needs fixing or changing to make the house completely safe and liveable. If you are unwilling to appoint a chartered surveyor, buyers may be put off putting in an offer on the property (unless the house itself is brand new).

• When selling a property it is advisable to get a professional valuation done on your property, this will help you to know what to price to list the property at, and also how much lower than the asking price you can accept without losing out.

• If you would like to renovate or make changes to a property, you can appoint a specialised surveyor, dealing in the area you specifically need help in. They an advice you on what you can do to make the property more valuable.

Specialised surveyors, include but are not limited to:
• Building Surveyors: this is the most commonly used surveyor service. A surveyor will advise on repairs and renovations on the property as it is or can help during the design and construction processes of a new building or house.

• Construction Surveyors: Construction on a larger scale, if you were building an entire housing estate rather than an individual house, you would need the help of a construction surveyor, this also applies for any other larger scale constructions, such as office blocks etc.

• Environment Surveyors: If you are building in an area that could be affected, or could affect, the environment or land, you will need to appoint an environmental surveyor for specialised advice.

• Rural Surveyors: If you are selling your farm, along with plant and machinery, a rural surveyor can help you to value the property and assets worth and also help you when dealing with local authorities

When you are looking for a chartered surveyor, the easiest way to find someone suitable would be to look on the RICS website, there is a search function available to help you to narrow your search. This is particularly useful as any surveyors the RICS website search tool recommends will be fully qualified and have the relevant experience and qualifications. Before appointing a surveyor, however, narrow down your search and do some additional research on each surveyor, look on the internet at other customer reviews and understand how ‘recommended’ each surveyor is. Use this as a basis for your decision, not just the various quotes given by different surveyors.

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