Many thanks for instructing us to undertake your RICS Home Survey!


Please record any concerns you have in the form below that you want us to know about or pay particular attention to before we attend.

Please use the AA part of the reference number in your terms or engagement email (for example, if your reference number is 20000101_AA00500_SW11AA_1 please use the AA00500 as your reference) or you can use your surname as a reference.

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Thank You! This information will be provided to your surveyor prior to them attending the property! We look forward to speaking with you afterwards

Where do you inspect from (houses)

We inspect the subject property from both its private or communal grounds, and the public highway. We do not enter private property other than the subject property. 



We will comment on the outside of the building in detail for areas immediately adjacent to the subject property and generally for other areas. We do not comment on other flats doors or windows, but you may have a liability for them, and your legal advisor should confirm this. 

Where it is safe to do so, we will inspect from a 3-meter ladder.


How do you report the severity of defects?

For each building element, we will report on a traffic light system:

Red elements require urgent investigation/ obtaining of quotations before legal commitment to purchase. Sometimes  for services, this only relates to safety checks.

Amber elements are considered medium terms repairs that can be dealt with after taking ownership of the property. 

Green items may still have minor defects, but these are considered annual maintenance type repairs only.


The Inspection

For each element, we will comment on the construction of the element, the defects to the element, and give the element a rating. We will also report on limitations at the beginning of each section. 



Chimney stacks

We will inspect this element with binoculars and comment on any structural defects, waterproofing defects, and any evidence of water ingress/ damp penetration below


We will comment on the type and condition of the covering, whether an underlining is present, and any evidence of water ingress/ damp penetration below

Rainwater goods

We will comment on the type of rainwater goods and any damage, blockages, or leakage


Including commentary on structural movement, including subsidence, and including testing for and commenting on dampness


Including testing a sample of windows and commenting on operation and decay


Including testing doors and commenting on operation and damage/ decay

Conservatories and porches

Including quality of construction, damage, structural movement, and dampness


Including decay


Including balconies/ porch canopies etc



Roof structure

Where it is safe to do so, we will inspect the loft void. The loft will be entered where fixed boarding is present. In the absence of fixed boarding a ‘head and shoulders’ torch inspection will be undertaken

Commentary includes defects to the roof structure, evidence water ingress, services within the loft, party walls, the condition underside of the roof, insulation and ventilation


Including commenting on type and condition, dampness, and potential asbestos content

Internal walls and partitions

Including alterations, structural movement, the condition of plaster and testing for dampness


Including type, structure, and sub-floor ventilation

Fireplaces and chimney breasts

Including condition, dampness and removal of chimney breasts and any associated concerns/ recommendations

Built in fittings

Including quality, damage, and leakage


Including checking staircases and doors and checking for woodworm

Bathroom Fittings

Including quality, damage, and leakage




General commentary on all individual elements of the garage as outlined in the sections above

Permanent outbuildings

General commentary on all individual elements of substantial outbuildings as outlined in the sections above


Including commentary on areas of hardstanding and boundaries



We are RICS surveyors and cannot give ‘unqualified’ advice on the safety and operation of services. We do not test services, although we will comment on any visual defects of obvious obsolescence

Upon arrival to collect keys or when meeting vendors at the property, we will ask for test certificates for the electricity, gas, heating, and water heating. If we are not presented with these at the time of inspection, they will be recorded as a condition rating 3 (RED on the traffic light system) with a recommendation for all services to be tested


Commentary on obvious visual faults and comments if obsolete


Commentary on obvious visual faults and comments if obsolete


Commentary including checking for leaks in accessible areas


Commentary on heating type, obvious visual faults, and comments if obsolete

Water Heating

Commentary on heating type, obvious visual faults, and comments if obsolete


Commentary on above ground drainage and gullies. For houses, we will attempt to lift inspection chamber covers and comment on the below ground drainage installations



Do you comment on cladding?


Do you check for Japanese knotweed?


Do you check for subsidence?

We comment on all elements of structural movement, including subsidence

Do you check for asbestos?

We do not undertake an asbestos survey, but we do comment on materials likely to contain asbestos

Do you check for damp?

Yes. We test for dampness with an electronic moisture meter, both intermittently and also in higher risk areas, e.g. under windows/ roofs 

Do you check for rodents?

We will comment where there is evidence of rodent activity or pest control

Can you tell me if walls are load-bearing?

Confirming whether walls are load-bearing requires destructive investigation so we cannot comment on this

Do you comment on planned extensions?

We do not comment on proposed extensions/ alterations 

Do you look at white goods?

We do not inspect or test white goods

Can you recommend someone to do the repairs?

As a company, we do not make specific recommendations for tradesmen because we offer an independent and impartial service to our clients and do not want recommendations to potentially be perceived to compromise this. Similarly, we cannot guarantee fair pricing/ quality of work from any recommendations we may make.

Can you tell me how much the repairs will cost?

We cannot comment on repairs costs. This is specifically excluded from this service

My environmental searches showed a risk of ground instability. Will you look at this?

Much of Greater London and the Home Counties are built on shrinkable sub-soils and this search result is often not specific to either the site or the neighbourhood, compared to the wider locality. We will look for and comment on structural movement related to ground movement/ instability



Farrow & Gould Limited trading as Farrow & Gould Chartered Surveyors
Registered Office: 124, City Road • London • EC1V 2NX
Company Number: 14876073

VAT Registration Number: 457 7583 42

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