Used by both buyers and sellers, an RICS condition report is primarily utilised within the residential market as a method of showing problems in both newer and older buildings alongside evidence of the property’s condition.
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Everything you need to know about Condition Reports
Before buying a property, it can be preferable to see evidence of the building’s condition, particularly if it is old or there are potential concerns over the condition following uncertainty caused by the seller, debatable issues flagged during the property survey valuation, or a surprisingly low asking price that contradicts the perceived quality of the property.
Likewise, the seller of the property may see benefits of providing transparency over the current condition of the property they are selling. For instance, offering evidence of the property’s condition could contribute to selling the property quickly or justify setting an ambitious asking price.
Sometimes titled aRICS condition report, home condition report (HCR), property condition report, level 1 condition report, or simply as a level 1 survey, a condition report is a form of building survey in the form of a professional and objective report designed to reflect the current standard of a property to potential buyers prior to purchase.
What is a Condition Report?
A condition report is an opportunity for a potential homebuyer or seller to see an overview of a property with highlights of immediate risks and maintenance requirements following a comprehensive survey on a room by room basis. Suiting a number of purposes, RICS condition reports can be requested by clients for a variety of purposes and are often utilised for analysing an existing dwelling in a reasonable condition.
Most commonly, a client selling a property would acquire a level 1 condition report with the purpose of removing any concerns and increasing the desirability of their property. It isn’t uncommon, however, for someone to ask for a RICS condition report as a method of gaining assurances over a property they are looking to buy.
As condition reports are often created for clients buying or selling conventional properties, they are written and presented in a style that avoids lingo, simplifies important factors as much as possible, and is easy to understand. However, in certain circumstances, a RICS condition report may also be used in commercial projects to indicate the value of existing infrastructure, as well as in the commercial and residential rental market to reflect a standard before and after entering into a rental agreement, protecting both landlords and tenants.
Benefits of a RICS Condition Report
In order for a mortgage provider to determine the value of a property, they will conduct a brief property valuation survey. A more advanced and comprehensive version of this process is a homebuyer report, which some property buyers will arrange as thorough building surveys to establish an extensive understanding of a property and all potential flaws before completing the process.
While each form of building survey governed by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) offer numerous advantages and disadvantages, a basic overview within condition reports bridge the gap between a mortgage provider’s valuation and a RICS homebuyer survey:
Below, we have provided a list of benefits to choosing a level 1 condition report survey ahead of other similar alternatives:
Acts as a supplement to a mortgage property valuation
Advises on necessary further investigations
Cheaper than a RICS homebuyer survey
Details the condition of the property and the description of the construction including whether it is a standard or non-standard construction project
Formatted to set out a concise description of findings
Highlights serious issues that require urgent attention
Offers information to bring light to factors that could be a risk to the building
Outlines both obscure and obvious surface level issues on the property using a visual traffic light system
Prepares clients for the sale or purchase of the property
Written clearly in plain English
A key similarity between a RICS condition report and a homebuyer report is that both use the same traffic light system to grade the defects on the property identified during home or building surveys. The traffic light rating is formed from four stages, ranging from urgent issues at a rating of three to confirmation that no attention is needed at a rating of one, as well as a stage that reflects no inspections are needed or that none were carried out.
For an indication of how the condition rating traffic light system works, see the image below:
The Condition Rating Traffic Light System –
RICS Condition Report
All of the assessments we offer to clients are conducted under strict specifications and standards to ensure that they are carried out with a level of accountability and consistency. We work on behalf of clients to provide a service that suits their needs and requirements, so if they have certain specifications to achieve predetermined goals, we are happy to adjust our approach to factor in these considerations providing they don’t harm the integrity of the assessment. However, we universally follow the guidelines of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) to guarantee an expected standard in all building surveys we undertake.
As a method of visually explaining how a typical report would look, RICS published an empty condition report example online. You can see this yourself or read our easy to understand breakdown of what you would usually find in a completed RICS condition report below:
Condition Report Example
A cover page with details of the property address, client’s name and the date of the survey
Full contents with information about the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) detailed below
An introduction to RICS condition reports including an extensive explanation of the assessment process and purpose
Further information about the survey such as the surveyor’s name, RICS number, company name, date of the survey, report reference number, full property address, weather conditions on the day of the survey, and property status
An outline of the condition rating system used, including how the traffic light format works
Details about the property such as the type of property, approximate dates it was built, extended or converted, and information relevant to corresponding flats and maisonettes
A selection of tick boxes for rooms present in the property, the energy efficiency rating and environmental impact rating, and details about the gas, electricity, water and drainage
Details about features outside of the property such as chimney stacks, conservatories and porches, main walls, outside doors and patio doors, rainwater pipes and gutters, roof coverings, windows, and other joinery and finishes
Details about features inside the property such as bathroom fittings, built-in fittings, ceilings, fireplaces, chimneys, breasts and flues, floors, roof structures, walls and partitions, and woodwork
Details about services across the property including common services such as drainage, electricity, gas, heating, oil, water, and other limitations to the visual inspection
Details about other grounds such as garages
Information about any factors that need to be assessed by regulators or other applicable professionals
Information about any possible risks to the building, grounds and people, with the traffic light score listed beside each highlighted risk
A closing declaration from the surveyor that confirms they have inspected the property and completed the jargon-free report in full and correctly using the traffic light system, followed by a RICS disclaimer
A comprehensive description of the RICS condition report service
A diagram of a typical house with all potential features included such as:
Damp-proof courses (DPC)
Damp-proof membrane (DPM)
Gable end walls
Soil and vent pipes
Surface water drains
RICS Condition Report Cost
In the process of selling a property, one of several financial considerations is the option of requesting a RICS condition report. Alongside the numerous fees that accumulate through putting a property up for sale – as well as the fees from purchasing a new home – a level 1 condition report may seem like an unnecessary additional component to pay for.
A RICS condition report, however, offers a multitude of benefits that could contribute to a quicker sale and a higher sale price, helping to save money in the long run. As such, whether you are selling a property or are looking to buy a new property, it can be worthwhile to factor a level 1 condition report into your budget.
How Much Does a RICS Condition Report Cost?
Our pricing structure for RICS condition reports is based on the size and nature of your property. Factors that could affect the cost of a level 1 condition report include the type of property (terrace, semi-detached, detached etc), quantity of bedrooms, bathrooms, other rooms within the property and outbuildings, and the value of the property. Simply provide us with these details, as well as the address of the property, and we will be able to help you with your enquiry and produce an accurate quote.
On average, the cost of a reasonable condition report would range between £200 and £450. However, the price will be higher if other forms of assessment are included, or if a more detailed survey needs to be added following the identification of certain features in the property. A common example of an assessment that could be conducted simultaneously would be an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR).
Electrical Installation Condition Reports (EICR)
Alongside the broader RICS condition report, The Survey House offers in-house expertise into other specific features within a property, including periodic inspection and testing of the property’s fixed wiring in the form of an Electrical Installation Condition Report.
What is an Electrical Installation Condition Report?
Also known as a landlord safety test or homebuyers test, an Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR) is a regular assessment of the safety of a property in relation to fixed wiring. An EICR inspection is usually carried out every few years to ensure that there are no issues with the wiring that could pose danger to the property or its inhabitants such as electrical shocks or fires.
Over the course of an Electrical Installation Condition Report, a qualified electrician will be required to tick several boxes. For instance, the electrician will need to check that all electrical installations are safe and free from shock risk before providing results of the inspection in the report. At this point, they will also identify any signs of wear and tear that could impede safety, and ensure that the installation of electrical items has been completed correctly in accordance with IEE Wiring Regulations BS 7671. Within the report, the electrician will detail whether the installation is satisfactory or unsatisfactory and update ongoing records of the condition of the electrical installation.
Electrical Installation Condition Report Example
After an electrician has carried out a visual inspection on the electrical installations within a property and completed the EICR, the client will receive the comprehensive yet easy to understand report split into several core sections.
An Electrical Installation Condition Report will typically include:
A safety record summary including the client’s details, the electrician’s details and conclusions from the assessment
A landlord electrical safety certificate with confirmation that the electrical installations passed the assessment
Information on the process of conducting an assessment for an EICR
Details of the electrical installations on the property in regards to circuits, earthing, voltage and other technical information
Listed electrical installations on the property with the standard of each element labelled beside them
A test schedule that outlines when electrical installations have been assessed and when another assessment will be needed
Electrical Installation Condition Report Cost
As with the pricing of a reasonable condition report, the cost of an Electrical Installation Condition Report will be determined by the details of the property and the number of rooms being inspected.
An EICR would usually cost around £125 for one bedroom or somewhere over £300 for five or more bedrooms. However, as numerous factors can affect the price of an inspection, it would be advisable to speak to us directly so we can review the details of your property and provide you with a bespoke quote. Unlike a service provider with a set price, we will make your quote tailored so we only charge you what you need to pay and you can save money.
RICS Condition Report Service
Following years of experience providing professional advice and identifying possible risks, The Survey house is a trusted and reliable option for RICS condition reports and any other type of survey involving assessing your property’s condition. As a level 1 condition report will require varying degrees of insight and knowledge, our chartered surveyors are licensed and capable of providing professional advice over the course of a detailed survey.
Each of our chartered surveyors are suitably educated with relevant qualifications from recognised institutions and accreditations from relevant governing bodies. We also guarantee that the surveyor sent to your property for a RICS condition report will possess the necessary experience and expertise to undertake an assessment to a high standard and create an accompanying report capable of reaching your specifications and achieving your goals.
We are aware that a RICS condition report may be required anywhere in the UK, so as a result, we have done all we can to cover as many areas across the country as possible. Through our company structure, our licensed chartered surveyors are situated all over the UK, meaning that we are available to carry out the right survey on various property types in your local area, assessing your property’s condition and making an informed decision as part of a level 1 condition report, with no limitation based on the type of building surveys you need or your location.
RICS Condition Report Quote
Our clients often contact us in regards to different parts of the services we provide. In terms of an RICS condition report, you may be a landlord in the process of renting out conventional properties formed from a variety of property types and need a basic overview showing problems and obvious defects on the properties, or you may be a homeowner that owns a conventional house and wants evidence of building control issues and control matters alongside obvious surface level issues that need repair work on the property.
It could even be the case that you are in the process of buying a new home and have been recommended by legal advisers to obtain information that isn’t easily accessible, maintenance history, or proof of repairs required on the property to make an informed decision before completing the overall purchase. If you are aware of the service you need or require help with navigating the right survey, get in touch with us, and our friendly team can offer support with arranging a RICS condition report in your local area or, if necessary, point you in the direction of a more detailed survey you need – such as an EICR – on your property.
Book a Condition Survey
For a free quote without obligation, call us directly, fill out our quick quote form or visit our contact page. You can then give us information about your property and the purpose of the RICS condition report, and we can price up a bespoke quote based on your details.
Whether you are working on conventional properties, older buildings, or a non-standard construction with a number of different parts, repair work needed, obvious defects, uncertain and possibly not easily accessible maintenance history, or building control issues, speak to our team and we can guarantee a competitive price and professional advice through a detailed survey with one of our chartered surveyors.
Sharing similarities with the pricing, the length of a level 1 condition report is dependent on the size of the property. That said, this type of survey would usually take around four hours excluding the travel time of our chartered surveyors. It is also worth noting that the overall time spent to complete a RICS condition report includes the building survey and the creation of the physical report back at the office.
It is important to avoid confusing a RICS condition report with a homebuyers report or the sort of property survey valuation that banks, buildings societies or legal advisers would undertake prior to a property purchase. A level 1 condition report does not include a property survey valuation, meaning that another form of new home survey such as a homebuyers report and property survey valuation would need to be arranged separately if both are also required in the conveyancing process.
We are fully aware that our clients may be in need of a quick and efficient level 1 condition report as soon as possible in order to avoid delaying their house selling process, particularly if they are involved in a chain and are also buying a new home. A standard RICS condition report survey can be completed within ten working days as part of our standard pricing structure. However, we can also offer a speedier service for analysing the property's condition using the traffic light system and the same level of attention to detail if the client needs it. For instance, for a higher fee, we can deliver a rapid RICS condition report within five days, or a next day service for even more time-sensitive cases.
An important factor for anyone arranging for an Electrical Installation Condition Report on their property is the duration that an EICR will remain valid for, especially considering it will determine when another inspection is needed. Previously, an EICR was valid for ten years, but with new regulations in place, an EICR is now valid for a maximum of five years. Due to this, shortly before the last EICR reaches five-years-old, another inspection on the property should be arranged.
Condition Reports Done in 3 Simple Steps
We know that you want your Condition Reports done quickly and efficiently to avoid delays and to help your project run smoothly. Our simple process makes everything hassle free and straight forward.
Give us a call or fill in our quick onlne quote form to tell us about the project you need a survey for.
We will put a quote together based on the information you give us and we’ll get in touch via phone or email if we need any more information.
You'll get your free, no-obligation quote via email. If you are happy with the quote, simply let us know and we will book in a conveinient date to do your survey. Finally, we’ll send your report a few days after the survey.