Main Issues Highlighted In A Full Structural Survey

When you’re purchasing a listed property, an older property, a property that has been renovated by a previous owner or a property you plan on renovating yourself, it is often recommended that you have a full structural survey carried out. This survey is the most comprehensive survey available for residential properties and it provides you with an invaluable insight into the condition of the property you’re interested in purchasing. 

A full structural survey isn’t a legal requirement when you’re purchasing a property and it is an additional expense to consider, however, it highlights any structural issues that you really should be aware of before going ahead with the purchase. Whilst all properties are different, some problems are regularly found during surveys and below we have listed some of the most common issues to be aware of. 

What is a full structural survey?

This particular type of building survey is usually conducted by a qualified member of the RICS called a Chartered Surveyor, however, it could also be undertaken by a Structural Engineer. During a full structural survey, all elements of a property are examined and the specialist conducting the survey actively searches for structural problems. 

You will be provided with a comprehensive report that tells you everything you need to know about the structural integrity of the property you want to purchase. Within this report, the condition of each element is described and any areas of concern are highlighted. You could then choose to conduct further investigations if you would like to. 

Ultimately, a full structural survey provides you with peace of mind and removes some of the risks associated with buying a property. It could also help you when you’re applying for a mortgage and prevent concerns relating to the mortgage valuation report. 

Issues that are regularly found during a full structural survey

Some of the most common issues highlighted in structural survey reports include; 


Unfortunately, damp is very common in all types of properties and it’s often found during a full structural survey. Whilst if left untreated damp could cause structural damage and even cause health issues, it is possible to get rid of damp and prevent it from returning. 

Electrical faults

Another frequent issue in properties is electrical faults. If homeowners have undertaken electrical work themselves without the required training, this could cause problems that would be highlighted in a full structural survey. As long as you don’t need to rewire the whole property, electrical issues are often quite easy to correct.  

Inefficient insulation

It isn’t uncommon for properties to have inefficient insulation and this is important to be aware of before you go ahead with a purchase. The insulation directly impacts the energy efficiency of a property and with the cost of energy bills rising, having good insulation is crucial. 

Roof problems

The roof of a property experiences a lot of wear and tear over time, and roof problems are regularly highlighted during full structural surveys. These problems range from missing and cracked tiles to blocked guttering and in some cases they could be more serious concerns relating to the roof structure. These are all problems you shouldn’t overlook. 

Non-compliant renovations

As DIY home improvements become more and more popular, more issues are being highlighted in relation to renovations. Any alterations made to the original structure need to be compliant with building regulations and if they aren’t, this would be noted during a full structural survey. 

You may be able to get building regulation indemnity insurance for non-compliant renovations, but it is incredibly important to discuss this with an experienced professional in more detail. 

Need some assistance getting a mortgage?

If you’re in the process of buying a new house, whether or not you decide to have a full structural survey carried out, our team at Mortgage Required can help you to find a suitable mortgage. For over two decades now we have been helping buyers navigate the mortgage market and we offer a whole of market service. Our experienced mortgage advisors can help you to compare mortgage lenders and mortgage deals, ensuring you choose the right product for your specific requirements. 

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