If you are applying for a mortgage your lender will insist that they carry out a basic valuation. The purpose of this report is for the lender to be satisfied that the property you wish to buy is adequate security for the mortgage you are applying for. Although it is carried out by a suitably qualified surveyor it is not a survey and should not be treated as such.
The Homebuyers Survey is a mid price and mid range option that usually follows a standard form for the surveyor to complete when he/she visits the property. A mortgage valuation is usually carried out at the same time. This type of survey is considered suitable for properties that are of standard construction and in reasonable condition. This type of survey will highlight major defects that should be addressed before contracts are signed, will test for damp in the walls and damaged timbers including woodworm or rot and will look at the condition and effectiveness of any past works done to the property such a damp course.
Full Structural Survey
This survey will go in to the most detail of all the surveys and is strongly recommended when you are purchasing a property that is listed, of non standard construction or older than 150 years old. It is the most comprehensive option available and advised for a property that you wish to renovate or carry out extensive alterations to.