How long does a valuation survey take

What Happens During a Mortgage Valuation?

If you have found a property that you like and are planning to purchase it using a mortgage, your bank or mortgage lender will carry out a mortgage valuation survey prior to accepting or rejecting your application. The purpose of this survey is to ensure that the house you want to buy is worth the price that you are planning to pay for it. This survey might also be required by the lender if you are looking to remortgage your current home, in order for them to get a better understanding of how the value of your home has changed since you purchased it and to ensure that the amount you are applying to borrow is in line with the value of the property.

What is a Mortgage Valuation Survey?

A mortgage valuation survey is carried out for the benefit of the bank or mortgage lender, in order to keep their risk levels low. It is designed to check that the property is worth the asking price and that the lender is not going to be putting themselves in any financial risk when providing you with a mortgage to purchase it. They will use the survey to determine whether or not the property is worth enough to act as security for the mortgage amount that you have applied for before lending. However, while this survey is typically done for the lender, it can also have a range of benefits for the buyer, including helping you ensure that you are not paying more than you need to for your new property. In some cases, it might also be able to help you get the property for less if you are able to use the valuation survey results to negotiate a lower asking price with the seller that is more in line with the figure that the surveyors have provided.

Is a Mortgage Valuation the Same as a Survey?

No. A mortgage valuation survey should never be used in place of a building survey such as a homebuyer’s report, which is designed to make sure that you are fully informed about the property before purchasing. Since the valuation survey is purely designed to double-check the value of the home and make sure that it’s worth the price you are going to pay for it, it will not typically go into any depth about the condition of the home or provide you with information on defects or pertinent issues that you will need to deal with once you move in. If the valuation survey finds that the home is worth the amount that you are planning to pay for it, you may not even see the results of this survey, which is why it is important to work with an independent surveyor to carry out a building survey on the home before going ahead with the purchase. There are three types of building surveys available to choose from which include:

  • Condition report: This is recommended for newer properties without obvious defects, and will rate each area of the property using a traffic light system to indicate its condition.
  • Homebuyer’s report: This is the most popular survey option to choose from, and recommended for homes that are of reasonable or average age and condition. It will provide you with a report on the condition of the property and any defects that might not have been obvious during the viewing such as damp issues in the walls or subsidence.
  • Structural survey: The most in-depth and comprehensive survey option, this is recommended for anybody who is looking to purchase an older property, a property with an unusual layout or design, or a property made with unusual materials. You may also want to opt for this survey if you are purchasing any property that you plan to carry out significant renovation work on in the future, since it will ensure that you do not miss any important information about the house before you buy.
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Along with the mortgage valuation survey that is carried out by the lender, some banks and mortgage lenders may require that you have a building survey carried out on the property before they will agree to accept your mortgage application.

What Does a Valuation Surveyor Do?

There are two ways that a surveyor can perform a valuation survey on a property. In the past, the surveyor would need to pay a visit to the property in person to inspect it and check that it was worth the asking price. But today, with an increasing amount of information now available for surveyors to find online about properties and houses in the surrounding areas, more and more valuation surveys are desk-based and do not require a visit to the property to take place at all. In most cases, where the mortgage lender or bank does not anticipate much risk with lending to you for the property purchase, this is the type of valuation survey that will occur. The surveyor will use available information on the property itself and information on similar properties that have sold in the area over the past six months to determine if the asking price is realistic compared to the value. In some cases, the surveyor might drive by the property to take a quick look at it in person and ensure that it is in line with the information that they have. They will not usually need to enter the property in this case.

In some cases, a physical inspection of the property may still be required, which will mean that the surveyor will need to get access to the property so that they can look around. This might be the case if the lender believes that there is a higher level of risk associated with the home in question, such as if you want to purchase a listed building or a property that has an unusual layout or construction materials. Your lender may also ask the surveyor to pay a visit to the property in person if they cannot find enough information online to make a decision or if they are new to lending in that area.

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How Long Does a Valuation Survey Take?

How long the valuation survey will take usually depends on the type of survey that the surveyor will carry out. If the surveyor needs to visit in-person, this is usually a very short inspection that can be expected to last around 15-30 minutes so that they can take a look around the property for any obvious defects or issues that could have an impact on the value of the home. They will also check to confirm key property details for the lender before making an assessment on the market value of the property by looking into at least three similar sales transactions for properties in the surrounding area over the past six months. They will also consider the supply and demand for property in the local market when determining how much the property is worth.

Will I Have to Pay Chartered Surveyor Valuation Fees?

A mortgage valuation survey will usually set you back between £150 and £1,500, depending on the type of home that you are planning to purchase. However, since this survey is mainly for the benefit of the lender rather than the buyer, you can often find lenders who will try and encourage new customers to apply for a mortgage with them by offering the valuation survey free of charge, which may be worth looking into if you are hoping to save money on the associated costs of purchasing a property. The final cost of the mortgage valuation is usually based on the property price.

What Happens After a Mortgage Valuation Survey?

After the mortgage valuation survey has been completed, the surveyor will provide your lender with their opinion on the value of the property. If the surveyor agrees that the asking price for the property is in line with its value, you are likely to be offered the amount of loan that you have applied for in order to purchase it. However, in some cases, the surveyor might determine that the property is worth less than the asking price. In this situation, you are unlikely to be offered the full mortgage amount that you have applied for and will usually only be offered a mortgage up to the given value of the property. In this case, you have the option of covering the difference using a different loan or savings, or you may be able to renegotiate the asking price with the seller in order to try and get them to bring the asking price down in line with the surveyor’s valuation. You may also want to consider trying to apply with a different lender who uses different surveyors, although this can be time-consuming and tricky since you will be applying for more mortgage credit in a short space of time which could affect your ability to get accepted.

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When buying a property with a mortgage, your lender will need to complete a survey to ensure that the amount they are lending you is in line with the value of the home.