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Does the Seller Get a Copy of the Survey?

Adele MacGregor

Written by

21st Nov 2022 (Last updated on 16th Feb 2024) 5 minute read

In most cases, sellers do not get a copy of the survey results. This is because, in the majority of the UK, buyers must arrange and pay for the property survey. The exception to this is Scotland where sellers must pay for the survey and provide all potential buyers with a copy.

Surveys provide essential information about the condition of the home. They help the buyer make an informed decision on the home.

  1. Who Gets a Copy of the Survey Report?
  2. Do Estate Agents Have to Disclose Survey Results?
  3. Home Report in Scotland
  4. What Can a Seller Do to Protect Their Interests?
  5. What Happens After a Survey on a House?
  6. What If I Get Bad Survey Results?
  7. How to Find a Surveyor?

Who Gets a Copy of the Survey Report?

If the buyer arranges a survey on the home they want to buy, only they will get a copy of the survey report. The results will not be sent to anyone else, including the seller. It is up to the buyer whether they wish to send it to the seller or other third parties.

The only difference is with a new-build snagging survey. This is shared with the developer building the home. This way any issues or potential problems can be resolved before the buyer moves in.

Otherwise, a surveyor cannot discuss the report or its contents without the buyer's knowledge or consent. The seller will only know what the survey uncovers if the buyer chooses to disclose the results to them.

Do Estate Agents Have to Disclose Survey Results?

An estate agent will not know the contents of a survey unless a buyer wants to share the results with them. Remember that an estate agent works for the seller, not the buyer. The buyer is not obliged to make the estate agent aware of issues found in their survey. As a result, they would be unable to share these details with other or future buyers.

However, if the estate agent is aware of issues or potential issues, future buyers do need to be made aware. Under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008, anything that could influence a buyer’s decision must be disclosed.

With this in mind, estate agents must not mislead the buyer. It is an offence for them to withhold any “material” information.

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Home Report in Scotland

In Scotland, the process is different. It is the seller's responsibility to arrange and pay for a survey of the home. This is known as a Home Report. They are then legally required to provide a copy of the Home Report to all prospective buyers.

Sellers need a RICS registered surveyor to carry out a Single Survey and Energy Report on their home. The seller then completes a Property Questionnaire. The three elements make up the Home Report.

What Can a Seller Do to Protect Their Interests?

As a property seller, there are a few ways you can protect yourself.

  1. TA6 Form: First of all, be as accurate and honest as you can when filling in the TA6 Property Infomation form. This provides the buyer with vital up-front information about the property.
  2. Indemnity Insurance: Your conveyancer may suggest a policy to protect yourself from any third-party claims. This policy will be valid once the ownership of the home is transferred to the buyer.
  3. Prepare Your Property: Making sure your home is looking its best is essential for enticing buyers. This includes repairs, curb appeal (maintaining the front of the house) and cleaning.
  4. Get a Valuation: Having your home valued will give you an idea of how much the home is worth and what to list it for. It can also assist you when it comes to negotiations, ensuring you don’t sell for below the home's value.

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What Happens After a Survey on a House?

After a survey, the prospective buyer is given a report on the findings. It is then up to them if they want to continue with the purchase or not.

If the survey is reassuring or the buyer is happy to accept that some work may be required, the sale can continue. From here, the conveyancing process will move forward.

This includes:

  • Property searches (if they haven’t already been completed)
  • Drafting and negotiating the contract
  • Agreeing on a completion date
  • Exchanging contracts
  • Completion day

If the survey reveals significant issues, the buyer may want to pull out of the sale.

What If I Get Bad Survey Results?

The course of action after a “bad” report depends on how bad the situation is. If there are significant structural issues with the home, the advice is usually to pull out of the sale. This would cost a large amount of money to rectify and could lead to further issues in the home.

If this is your dream home and issues are fixable, you could instead negotiate the price with the seller and submit a lower offer. Some sellers may offer to rectify the problems before the sale is complete. Others will negotiate the selling price with you to cover some or all the repair costs. If they can come to an agreement, the process can move forward. If not, again, the buyer may walk away.

For more information on bad survey results read: What to Do After Bad House Survey Results

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How to Find a Surveyor?

When looking for a surveyor, you should ensure they are RICS registered. RICS is the governing body for surveyors in the UK. RICS-registered surveyors must have the necessary experience and qualifications. They must also follow the organisation’s guidelines.

At Compare My Move, we can match you with up to 6 local RICS-registered surveyors in the local area. We can also save you up to 70% on your surveying costs. All our surveying partners have passed our strict verification process.

Another way of finding a surveyor is to ask for recommendations from friends and family. Be aware that many surveyors will be restricted by location. That is why getting matched with professionals local to you is important.

Need a Removal Company?

Once your survey and property transaction are complete, you will likely need to hire a removal company. Our integrated surveying form allows you to request removal companies in just a few extra steps.

We can connect you with up to 6 removal companies, allowing you to save up to 70% on your removal fees.

Adele MacGregor

Having worked at Compare My Move for over five years, Adele specialises in covering a range of surveying topics.

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