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How Long Do House Surveys Take?

When you're on the brink of purchasing a property, it's crucial to understand every nook and cranny of your potential new home. That's where a house survey comes in. But just how long does this process take?

We're about to dive into the intricacies of house surveys, shedding light on the timeline you can expect. Whether you're a first-time buyer or a seasoned homeowner, we're certain you'll find this guide useful.

Stay tuned as we unravel the mystery behind the duration of house surveys, providing you with the insight you need to plan your property purchase effectively.



How Long Does a House Survey Take?

When purchasing a property, a house survey is essential to ensure you're fully informed about your potential new home. Understanding the timeline for this process can help you plan effectively. The duration of a house survey depends on several factors including the property's size, age, type, and condition, as well as the surveyor's workload and availability. Let's break down what you can expect.


Typical House Survey Duration

For most standard properties, a house survey typically spans between 2 to 3 hours. However, more comprehensive surveys, such as a building survey, can require 5 to 6 hours. After the survey, it generally takes 5 to 10 business days for the surveyor to prepare the final report. These timelines can vary based on the surveyor's schedule and workload.


Factors Affecting Survey Duration


Property Size and Type


Smaller properties: Flats and smaller houses might only require around 2 hours.

Larger properties: A five-bedroom house or unique properties may take a full day.


Property Age and Condition


Modern, well-maintained homes: Typically need around 3 hours.

Older or dilapidated structures: Can take upwards of 6 hours due to more thorough inspections needed.


Surveyor's Workload and Availability


High demand periods or a busy surveyor can extend the time needed to deliver the report by an additional 2 to 3 business days.


Access and Cooperation


Smooth coordination with homeowners, agents, and tenants can expedite the survey process, potentially reducing it to as little as 2 hours for well-prepared properties.

A property surveyor conducting a house survey

House Survey for a New Build

For new builds, the survey process is generally quicker, often taking 1 to 2 hours. This is because new constructions typically lack historical issues that require extensive inspection. However, it is still advisable to conduct a comprehensive survey to ensure no construction issues are overlooked.


Homebuyer's Survey (Level 2) Duration

A Level 2 Homebuyer's Survey usually takes about 2 to 3 hours, although this can vary based on property size and complexity. For instance:

Modern semi-detached houses: Closer to 2 hours.

Large or period properties: Require more thorough examination, extending the survey duration.

Reports for Level 2 surveys are typically available within 3 to 5 working days post-survey, though complexities can extend this period. Expedited options are available for urgent cases.


Homebuyer's Survey for Older Homes

Older homes, with potential issues like damp, structural movement, or outdated systems, often require more time. A Level 2 survey on an older home can take up to 4 hours. The report usually takes 3 to 5 business days, though expedited services are available at a higher cost.


Building Surveys

Building surveys, which are more detailed and extensive, often require 5 to 8 hours. These surveys scrutinise elements such as:

  • Structural soundness

  • Dampness and woodworm

  • Dry rot and subsidence risks

  • Potential costly repairs

Post-survey report generation can take between 5 and 10 working days, depending on the findings' complexity.


Post-Survey Steps and Considerations

After receiving the survey report, review it carefully to understand the findings and implications. Maintain open communication with your surveyor for advice and clarification, especially if serious issues are uncovered. If facing a tight deadline, consider expedited report options, though these come at a premium.

In summary, while the time taken for a house survey can vary greatly, it is a crucial step in the property buying process. Investing the necessary time ensures you are fully informed about your potential new home, making it a wise long-term investment.


For help and advice with how long house surveys take and to arrange any inspection from an expert surveyor, get in touch with Midland Counties Surveyors today.

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