What Is The Difference Between a Homebuyers Report and a Building Survey?

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RICS Homebuyer Report - Traffic Light System VS RICS Building Survey

The main difference between a HomeBuyer Report & Building Survey is that a RICS Building Survey is significantly more comprehensive. A Building Survey involves:

  • Inspecting the roof space, grounds, floors & services
  • Establishing how the property is built, the materials used & how these will fare as the property ages over time
  • Suggesting the repair options of any faults & explaining the consequences of not acting on them.

Comparing the Different Types of Home Survey
Our home surveys comparison table explains the main differences between Homescore Reports, RICS Homebuyer Reports & RICS Building Surveys:

Feature of Your Home SurveyHomescore ReportRICS Homebuyer ReportRICS Building Survey
Report completed by an RICS qualified surveyor
Describes the condition of the property on the
date of the inspection
Aims to show up potential issues and defects,
before any transaction takes place
Aims to identify any problems that need
urgent attention
Aims to identify things that need to be investigated
further to prevent serious damage
Includes the standard visual inspection during
which secured panels, electrical fittings etc. are
not removed
An enhanced service that includes a more
extensive roof space inspection and comments on
underground drainage
Aims to identify any repair or restoration work which
can be factored into price negotiations
Provides a market valuation--
Provides a reinstatement cost for insurance
Report delivered to you electronically within 24
hours of the inspection
Simple score ratings with no complicated language--
A comprehensive visual inspection which includes
a more thorough consideration of the roof space,
grounds, floors and services
Aims to establish how the property is built, what
materials are used and how these will perform in
the future
Aims to outline the repair options, whilst explaining
the consequences of not acting

If you’d like a print friendly version of our home survey comparison guide, you can download your very own copy to take away:


Which Property Survey Do I Need?

VIDEO: Which Type of Home Survey Is Right For Me?

If you still need a helping hand to decide which home survey would be best for you, watch our helpful summary video:

Want to learn more about a specific type of home survey? Our individual product pages go into more detail on the individual types of property surveys that SDL Surveying provide:


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4.3 771 reviews

  • Avatar Karen Howells-Lee ★★★★★ in the last week
    Great service from this company. Arranged by my lender, SDL rang to book an appointment … read more very quickly. Then rang back to offer an earlier slot. Paul rang 30 mins before arriving as promised. He was extremely pleasant, helpful and thorough. No complaint from us at all.
  • Avatar Greg Gibson ★★★★★ a week ago
    The surveyor who attended was extremely professional, showing covid awareness and … read more politeness from the very start. He was informative, engaging and made what could have been a strictly procedural meeting, a more personable and enjoyable one. We shared good conversation and SDL should be made aware that this surveyor represents the company in an excellent way. Would definitely recommend their services as a result
  • Avatar Michael Carney ★★★★★ 5 months ago
    I thought the service provided by Richard from SDL Surveying was fantastic. Gave … read more me a call the day of the survey to talk through his findings. Then once I had received the report, kindly talked me through the final report and answered my many questions. In what can sometimes be a painful experience, Richard made things super simple.