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I probably shouldn't get involved with this, buuut...

edited 31 October 2013 at 8:32PM in House Buying, Renting & Selling
5 replies 1.1K views
LucyeffLucyeff Forumite
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edited 31 October 2013 at 8:32PM in House Buying, Renting & Selling
..does anyone know of a really good and reasonably priced surveyor who would cover the West Yorkshire area, please?

The people whose property we are buying will be using the proceeds of their sale to buy their next property and so would have to arrange their own survey. Their agents and the solicitor their agents have recommended have been worse than appalling so far. I have an awful feeling that their agent would also be recommending a surveyor to them at some point (assuming they will take a cut of it) and as the people we're buying from are really decent people who don't have the comfort of the internet and reviews and Google, I'm conscious that they will end up with a duff firm.

The surveyor who came to ours didn't do a damp meter check, which I was amazed about. As these folk are cash buyers and so lovely, I want to help them avoid any disasters as much as possible (not that our house is damp! But you get the gist).

Can anyone recommended a decent, honest and fairly priced firm at all, please? I used to process mortgages many moons ago and we used Countrywide quite often..does anyone know whether this would still be a good recommendation at all?

Thanks in advance for any help you can offer. I know this probably above and beyond what I should be doing, but I hate seeing good people being taken advantage of :(

Lucy

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  • LucyeffLucyeff Forumite
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    Actually, even though our financial adviser has 'eeeked at us being so involved with our lovely vendors, I won't apologise for it. Even in a cut throat transaction like this, I'm still an MSE-er after all! :j
  • edited 31 October 2013 at 8:48PM
    kingstreetkingstreet Forumite
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    edited 31 October 2013 at 8:48PM
    Lucyeff wrote: »
    I used to process mortgages many moons ago and we used Countrywide quite often..does anyone know whether this would still be a good recommendation at all?
    Er... no.

    The survey firm is "alright", but recommending anything to do with Countrywide sticks in the throat.

    I've been on the end of too many "obtain specialist timber and damp report due to high meter readings" to worry too much about a surveyor not measuring moisture, as TBH it's mostly rubbish and nothing to do with rising damp, as they suggest.

    It's normally about soil bridging the damp course, leaky rainwater goods etc.

    Surveyors are probably responsible for more unnecessary damp courses, second only to the actual contractors who get work from their spurious "reports."
    I am a mortgage broker. You should note that this site doesn't check my status as a Mortgage Adviser, so you need to take my word for it. This signature is here as I follow MSE's Mortgage Adviser Code of Conduct. Any posts on here are for information and discussion purposes only and shouldn't be seen as financial advice. Please do not send PMs asking for one-to-one-advice, or representation.
  • We're in West Yorkshire and used Langleys - we have a Halifax mortgage and they recommended them.

    TBH they picked up on things that my hubby (a builder) didn't think were issues, and missed something that was...but they were friendly to deal with and I'd use them again.

    One massive thing to point out though is that most houses in West Yorkshire are 'damp' because of the stone that was used to build the houses in the 1800s. Yorkshire stone retains moisture, so there will always be a level of damp showing. A well insulated and heated house will push the moisture out (rather than in) so it shouldn't be an issue. I'm happy to share more details if you want to PM me.

    Hope that helps.
  • LucyeffLucyeff Forumite
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    Thanks for your replies.

    The house they're buying is of standard brick/tile construction as far as I know, and there *shouldn't* be any problem but I feel a bit (over?) protective towards them because they're such nice folk and I'd hate them to end up losing out because of someone doing a half hearted job.

    I would like to help them find a surveyor who is experienced and human enough to do a decent job. I'm gradually learning that this type of professional are few and far between these days when it comes to house buying, at whatever stage you're at :(

    I'll give Langleys a call on their behalf and see if I can have a word with the valuer, thanks so much for the recommendation. I had asked our financial adviser but I can imagine he won't be so comfortable suggesting firms in case of any come back.

    Thanks again!

    Lucy :)
  • lessonlearnedlessonlearned Forumite
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    I have used a company called "E-Serve". They are internet based so I assume they would cover Yorkshire (I'm Derbyshire).

    They charge £180 for a Home Buyer's Report (more detailed than a Lender's Valuation).

    In both cases they took approximately 2 hours on the day and a detailed written survey report took about a week.

    I was actually present at one of the inspections and the guy actually talked me through his findings before he left.

    By the way, you can buy a damp meter for about £20. I bought one from Jewson's.
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