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Surveyor help please

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in House Buying, Renting & Selling
9 replies 653 views
housebuyer1919housebuyer1919 Forumite
5 posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in House Buying, Renting & Selling

I'm looking for some advice if possible. My partner and I have purchased our first home. We paid for a home buyers report. As the man's website states this is only required for this age etc... the report came back with minor things, (decoration and new kitchen and bathroom) That was fine as we wanted to put our own stamp on things anyway.
It stated that the walls were fine, Windows fine, electrics had a modern RCD board so we have adequate protection etc...
On moving in, we have noticed cracks on the outside and after stripping wall paper, these cracks show something more substantial. The lintels are sagging and when the wall paper has been removed they mirror what is outside to inside and vice versa. Cracks both sides. These are visible from the outside and no need to strip paper to see. I just assumed that visible things like this would be picked up on?
The RCD box is not modern and very old apparently, but he wrote is was new. We have been told not to use the shed as the electrics running through would electrcute us. The doors under the living room Windows are hard to open because the lintels have sagged, because the back door is next to these doors, we didn't go through them at time of viewing.
His report states that the brick work is fine and no repointing is necessary as all is fine. We've been told that it does need repointing a lot.
I have contacted another surveyor and he asked for some photos, he emailed straight back and asked to see the report and will try and advise.
Where would we stand with this? Don't know what to do? Do we have any kind of legal right/help?
Thank you


  • Presumably you paid for a home buyers report, not a structural survey or an electrical report?
  • edited 10 October 2018 at 5:58PM
    Tom99Tom99 Forumite
    5.4K posts
    1,000 Posts Second Anniversary
    edited 10 October 2018 at 5:58PM
    [FONT=Verdana, sans-serif]Assuming it was a professional surveyor (RICS ?) you employed they if then were negligent you could sue them for professional negligence.[/FONT]
    [FONT=Verdana, sans-serif]RICS surveyors are required to hold professional negligence insurance and it is on that you would be claiming.[/FONT]
    [FONT=Verdana, sans-serif]If things are as bad as you say then use the 2nd surveyors report to approach the 1st surveyor saying you are holding them responsible for the loss you have incurred.[/FONT]
    [FONT=Verdana, sans-serif]They will pass your claim to their insurance co and you will take it from there.[/FONT]
    [FONT=Verdana, sans-serif]However, don't expect them to cave in and for it to be a easy ride.[/FONT]
  • Thank you Tom99. Yes I got his details off RICS. Thank you for that. Your comment is most appriecated
  • G_MG_M PPR Forumite
    52K posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    As above - if you want to challenge the 1st surveyor about this there are 2 ways to go

    1) start with a friendly approach, see if he'll agree to come back to look again, and see if he'll aknowledge his errors. You never know!

    2) but any formal challenge if he is less forthcoming will need supporting by another RICS report.

    I'd wait to see what the 2nd surveyor advises. Based on that, I think I'd try 1) above first before paying for the 2nd report and see what response you get.
    ** If I include a blue link in my post, click and read it before posting a follow-up question. The answer may be in the link! **
  • Ok I've had an email back this afternoon (2nd opinion) that the issues that we have on the property should have been raised and not one has been raised. Alot more than I've discussed above. Please someone tell me that I have somewhere to go with this as this is absolutely gutting.
  • SmashedAvacadoSmashedAvacado Forumite
    1.3K posts
    1,000 Posts First Anniversary
    You should see a solicitor and ask them to advise you in relation to making a claim against (ultimately suing) the solicitor. your home insurance may have some legal expenses cover. The surveyor will need to contact its insurer so its unlikely that they will admit anything that they havent admitted already openly. Look for a solicitor that specialises in professional negligence claims.
  • Thank you. Already called Direct Line and apparently, so I've been told, that we instructed the surveyor before the insurance was in place but we didn't know we were going to buy it until the surveyor report was given so a double edge sword scenario. They said it's unlikely to provide legal cover. Does this sound right??? We've paid for the premimum service. ����
  • Sorry I've tried to edit the post....
    But the insurance company have said they won't help because of the timing of the surveyor ????
  • teneightyteneighty Forumite
    1.3K posts
    If you believe the surveyor has made a mistake with a Homebuyers Report of Building Survey the process is very simple, you do not need solicitors or surveyors reports and you certainly do not need to sue the surveyor. The main test is would the defects have been visible at the time of the survey and should a competent surveyor have been able to identify them. So if the cracks had been hidden under wallpaper or the vendor piled up heavy furniture in front of them then the surveyor is not liable.

    All RICS firms have a complaints procedure that they must follow. The first step is to make your complaint to the surveyor, it can be reasonably informal to start with such as a phone call or email. The firm should investigate and respond.

    If you are not happy with the response the next stage is a formal complaint. Ask for details of their complaints procedure and follow the steps. It involves a more in depth internal investigation by a senior member of staff normally.

    If you are not happy with the results of the formal complaint the next stage is to take it to the ombudsman. This is an independent body and is entirely free. The ombudsman scheme changed this year to a new provider but the survey firm should have signed up with the new provider.

    If you are not satisfied with the result of the ombudsman's investigation then you could take legal action against the surveyor but to be honest if the ombudsman did not find in your favour you are probably wasting your time.
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