By Charlie Penrose, a partner at chartered surveyors Arnolds in Norwich
From the April 1, the existing Royal Institutions of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Homebuyer Survey & Valuation (HSV) was replaced with the new HomeBuyer Report (HBR). The HSV was first introduced in 1993, was aimed to be a concise report sitting in the middle ground between the Mortgage Valuation and the more extensive Building Survey. It has been updated twice since its introduction. Generally speaking the format has been successful and has served residential Surveyors and the public well. However, the political and financial context has changed dramatically over the past sixteen years and has rendered the HSV rather tired and dated and the format was considered by many to be
rather confusing. In addition since the launch of Home Information Packs (HIPs) there is an expectation for more up front information and the need to comment on the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). The RICS carried out research into how the survey could be improved which has led to the introduction of the new HomeBuyer Report. The aim of the report remains to help a purchaser make a reasoned and informed decision on whether or not to proceed and what is a reasonable price taking into account any repairs or replacements required. It also considers what further advice they should take before Contracts are Exchanged. The new report takes on a different format, but the principle change is that individual elements of the property will be condition rated 1 to 3 (1 represent where there are no repairs needed, 2 where repairs or replacement is required, but is not considered serious or urgent and 3 where the defect is serious or urgent and repairs are required). The new HomeBuyer Report remains a relatively low cost survey which is generally considered suitable for more modern and smaller properties. However, with the changes that are now underway we hope that it will provide advice that the buyer will find easier to understand and more relevant to the current buying and selling process.
For further information please contact Charlie Penrose at ACSSurvey@arnolds.uk.com