Level 3 Home Survey
(formerly known as a Building Survey)
The Level 3 service is for clients who are seeking a professional opinion based on a detailed assessment of the property.
The service consists of a detailed visual inspection of the building, its services and the grounds and is more extensive than a Level 2 survey. Concealed areas normally opened or used by the occupiers are inspected if it is safe to do so (typical examples include roof spaces, basements and cellars). Although the services are not tested, they are observed in normal operation – in other words, they are switched on or off and/or operated where the occupier has given permission and it is safe to do so.
The report objectively describes the form of construction and materials used for different parts of the property. It describes the condition and provides an assessment of the relative importance of the defects/problems and usually includes photographs to help illustrate points made. Additionally, it should:
- describe the identifiable risk of potential or hidden defects in areas not inspected
- propose the most probable cause(s) of the defects based on the inspection
- outline the likely scope of any appropriate remedial work and explain the likely consequences of non-repair
- make general recommendations in respect of the priority and likely timescale for necessary work and
- give an indication of likely costs (this aspect would not normally form part of the level three service, but some RICS members may choose to include it). Where costings are included, this must be reflected in the terms and conditions.
Where an RICS member feels unable to reach the necessary conclusions with reasonable confidence, they should refer the matter for further investigations. However, at survey level three such referrals should be the exception rather than the rule. A Level 3 survey report should aim to provide the client with all the information they need to make a decision.
This level of service will suit any domestic residential property in any condition depending on the competence and experience of the RICS member.
A buildings insurance figure or market valuation are not part of the standard report but can be included for an additional fee.