A review of how having a full structural

survey on a residential property is a must

before putting in a bid at an auction


Independent Building Surveyors

If you are in the process of purchasing or selling a property 1stAssociated.co.uk can provide help and advice with regard to building surveys, structural surveys, home buyers reports, independent valuations, property surveys, engineers reports, structural reports, specific defects reports or any other property matters.

Free phone 0800 298 5424

Buying a property at auction caveat emptor

Whether you are buying a property at auction or otherwise you should always remember the saying caveat emptor, which translates as buyer beware. The onus is on you to find out everything you need to about the property before you commit to purchase, otherwise once you have purchased the property all responsibility falls on you. It is therefore very important, we would say essential, to have a survey carried out by a chartered surveyor before you buy the property.


If you are interested in buying at auction you may be interested in the following articles we have written:

Buying at auction

How to buy a property at auction

Buying property at auction

Location, location, location

Our client was determined to live in a particular town and had been waiting for the right property to come up. He was looking for a family home, with three bedrooms and a reasonable sized garden, but unfortunately property prices in the area were quite high and generally more than he could afford.

The Victorian end of terrace property he was interested in had everything he wanted; three bedrooms, good sized rooms and a good sized garden. However, the reason that he could afford this property was that it was in a dilapidated state having been occupied for many, many years by the same owner who lived there until well into old age, and who had not carried out any repairs or maintenance for many years and as a result the purchase price was greatly reduced.

Street view of Victorian properties


We recommend meeting the surveyor at the property during the survey


Our client met us at the property and was able to explain exactly what he wanted from the survey and that because he was buying at auction in two day's time he needed to know all about the property very quickly to make an informed decision as to whether to buy or not.

We have written the following articles about buying property and why you should have an independent building survey carried out:

What is a building survey?

Building surveys, often known as structural surveys

Do estate agents tell the truth?

Why you have never seen a survey like ours

To buy or not to buy, that is the question

We found more than an average amount of problems with the property:

The chimney had been removed at roof height and this was causing dampness within the property. We could see rot visible in the ceiling joists.



Rotting timber

The roof had had been braced but this often causes the walls of the property to get pushed out, known as roof spread. This in turn can cause cracking, which is what had happened with this property, we could see movement and cracks to the walls. We also noted cracks visible inside the property.
Roof spread

The property had timber windows which were rotting and needed replacing.

There was also dampness within the property but particularly in the cellar area, which would benefit from having a sump pump fitted.

The whole house generally needed general TLC, both inside and outside to bring it up to modern day liveable standards.


A pause for thought, read the survey report in full


These were many things wrong with the property and we recommended our client read the report thoroughly before making a decision to go ahead and try and buy the property at auction and not be a desperate buyer. Just because the property was in the client's preferred location in his price range did not necessarily make it the best purchase as there were so many problems wrong with the property that it could become a money pit and not be a cost effective purchase long term.



We aim to complete our survey reports in three working days

As this property was being sold at auction in a few days time we needed to carry out the survey and type it up within three working days of the survey, which is exactly what we did This gave the client time to read and digest everything in the report before going to the auction.

This is a service we offer all our clients, as we understand you are keen to know whether to proceed with the purchase or not.


What do the circles and ovals mean in our reports?

The red ovals and circles are a system that we use within our structural surveys and building surveys to help explain to you or highlight problem areas or characteristics of a property. If the report, along with our photos, does not explain the problem or characteristics of a property enough then we also have a vast range of sketches that we have had commissioned exclusively for us that we can use in our reports.

Air brick acting as a gutter

Air brick photo


Compare our Building Surveys but don't compare Apples with Thursdays

If you require a Building Survey or a Structural Survey on a home, house or commercial property we believe as Building Surveyors we have a wealth of experience and expertise that we can utilise to help you.

We are more than happy to send you examples of our Surveys that we have carried out on similar properties to yours and pretty much have always carried out a survey on similar property to the one that you are looking at although we do appreciate that all properties are unique.

We really believe that you should see what you are getting in the form of an example Survey before you purchase a property. What is more is that we are so confident with our higher than average standards that we believe that there is no other comparable survey available in the UK property and surveying market.


Examples of our survey reports


If you are thinking of buying a property and are interested in having a Structural Survey carried out or if you are trying to sell a property and would like a Pre-Sales Survey please call us on free phone us for a friendly chat on 0800 298 5424. We would be happy to email you several examples of our tailor made reports.


All rights reserved by 1stAssociated.co.uk

All rights are reserved the contents of the website is not to be reproduced or transmitted in any form in whole or part without the express written permission of www.1stAssociated.co.uk


building engineers

Home Buyers Reports Property Surveys - why we're the best. Engineers Reports
© Copyright 1stassociated.co.uk

1stassociated-logo-for-footer IVSA-badge IVSA-putting-client-first call-us-for-footer

We have thousands of free property articles to help you - or call us freephone on 0800 298 5424

We have been working in the property industry for many years and have been
providing free property articles for over ten years. All for free and to help you with buying your next property.

House and Home Surveys and Useful Information

All you need to know about Building Surveys

Building Control, what do they do?

Designers and Architects will they save me money or will they cost me money

Enviroment, Your Building and Garden Gnomes

Estate Agents help sell houses and work for the vendors

Have a Structural Survey to protect you against structural problems

Home improvements, builder problems and ideas for you on how to solve them

How a Surveyor values a property, Chartered Surveyors and Regulated Valuers

How Chartered Engineers and Building Engineers can help you

Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas

NHBC National House Building Council

Structural Surveys and How We Can Help You

Traditional and Non-Traditional Houses and Mortgage Problems

Valuations and how much is the building worth?

Whats the difference between a Chartered Building Surveyor, Chartered Surveyor and an Independent Surveyor

Useful property problem articles by Chartered Surveyors explaining building issues to avoid

External - Helpful information on building problems on the outside of the property

Chimney issues and problems

Cracking and Movement Problems and Surveying Solutions

Flat Roof Problems, how we can solve them

Foundations and Structures and Settlement and Subsidence and Underpinning

Pitched Roofs Problems and Solutions

Roof Problems

Wall Problems

Windows and Doors and Fascias and Soffits and Wet Rot and Dry Rot and other problems

Internal - House problems we have investigated inside

All you ever need to know about floors

Asbestos in your home, what you need to know

Ceiling Cracks and Structural Problems

Condensation, Damp and Black Mould Problems

Cracking and Movement Problems and Surveying Solutions

Windows and Doors and Fascias and Soffits and Wet Rot and Dry Rot and other problems

Woodworm is it a problem or not? Is it active or not?

Services - Building help and advice on costly services

Drainage, what's underground can affect what's above ground

Heating; I just can't get my house warm enough or alternatively I just can't get my house cool enough

You can't mess around with the electric, you need an expert


Commercial Property Services

Building Terms Explained and Directories

Commercial Property Surveys

Commercial Structural Surveys

Leisure Facilites

Offices Large and Small

Shops and Retail

Warehouse and Industrial Buildings

Dilapidations Help and Advice What is a Dilapidations Notice?

A Beginner's Guide to Dilaps

Damp Mould and Condensation

Dampness Rising Damp Mould Black Mould Condensation

Dilapidations and Negotiations

Dilapidations Claim by a Landlord

Energy Saving what can I do?

Finance what is a Financial Adviser (We are not Financial Advisors)

Fire Risk and Help

Health and Safety Risks

Insurance how do I get the correct property insurance?

Landlords Surveying Advice

Property Investment how can I invest in property?

Property TV Reviews by an Independent Surveyor

Schedules of Condition Leasing a Commercial Property

Scotts Schedule and Section 18 Valuation

Tenants Surveying Advice

Weather how does weather affect my property?



Snow and Ice

Strong Winds

Reviews from clients on Commercial Building Surveys

Churches and Charities, helpful reviews from our clients

Industrial Buildings and Warehouses and what our clients say about us

Offices Large and Small, reviews and feedback from our clients

Pubs, Restaurants, Hotels and other Leisure facilities we have surveyed over the years

Shops and Retail, helpful reviews from our clients


First Time Buyers

Buying a Leasehold or Shared Freehold Home

Buying and Selling Houses for the experienced house and home purchaser

First Time Buyers how do I go about buying my first house and home?

Improve your property knowledge with our presentations on house, homes and commercial property

Building Surveys

Building Surveying Useful Information


Dilapidations Presentations in Detail

Final Year Building Surveying Exams for University Students or those that would like to know more

How old is your Building? Which era was it built in?

Party Walls

Surveyors and Design Tools

Disputes and Party Walls

Boundary Disputes

Building and Property Disputes

Party Wall Book Reviews

Party Walls Your Rights and Responsibilities

1stAssociated Surveyors Review for Structural Surveys and Building Surveys

Building Surveys, reviews and feedback from satisfied customers

Buy to let property clients, what they say about our structural surveys

Buying at auction, review of the survey

Buying bungalows and retirement properties and how our surveyors can help

Both at work / busy couples, how we can help and some 1stAssociated client reviews

Families with a young person flying the nest, reviews and feedback

First Time Buyers, what they say about us

Listed buildings, structural surveys

Older buildings, a review of buying an older house

Families with children looking for a new home, feedback and reviews

Buying a Non-Traditional Property

Residential Surveys

House and Home Surveys

Commercial Building Surveys

Commercial Surveys

1st Associated Surveyors Are Also Available in the Following Areas:

East Anglia and East

South and South East

West Country and South West


North and North East



London Markets

London Parks



Areas of Britain

1stAssociated Independent Expert Property Surveyors

Specialists in Home Buyers Reports, Building Surveys and Structural Surveys and Schedules of Condition

All Surveyors are Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors qualified and RICS regulated

and are Members of the Independent Surveyors and Valuers Association

Putting the Client First

We do not accept service of documents by email or fax