Mastering Snagging: A Surveyor’s Guide

Snagging surveyors are experts who identify a number of issues in new build homes. They will use tools and equipment like thermal cameras, electrical socket testers, humidity level meters to inspect a property, helping buyers understand and highlight any issues before they take possession. Snagging surveyors can identify a number of problems such as poor workmanship, incorrect specification, regulation breaches, and even items that will not be visible to the naked eye.

They also help buyers to negotiate with housebuilders over what should be repaired and what shouldn’t. As well as being invaluable to homebuyers, snagging surveys are often required by the government’s Building Control Regulations to ensure that a property has been built to a satisfactory standard and is safe for occupation.

The qualifications that snagging surveyors need vary, but the ability to identify faults and a background in housebuilding are essential. Many have a background in the construction industry, and a degree or diploma in property surveying, construction management or building design can provide the knowledge that is needed to enter the profession.

Snagging surveyors are a vital part of the building process and should be employed by builders from the early stages of construction through to completion of a project to ensure that the quality of work is high. They are able to identify problems that aren’t easily noticeable, such as sloppy plasterwork, poorly painted surfaces and doors and windows that don’t shut properly. They are also able to spot regulations breaches such as missing smoke detectors and untested electrical sockets.

There are no specific qualifications to be a snagging surveyor, but many snaggers will have a background in the construction industry and be members of RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) or RPSA (Residential Property Surveyors Association). They should also be fully insured, so homeowners can feel confident that their inspection will be carried out by a professional who has their best interests at heart.

Before hiring a snagging surveyor, ask how long they’ve been working in the industry and what their average survey price is. Make sure that they’re independent of any housebuilders and can offer a full, unbiased service. You should also look at what’s covered in the inspection, including testing alarm systems and whether they include a re-snagging survey should any issues be discovered after moving in.

While snagging surveyors can be hired after the property is complete, it is generally recommended that homeowners commission one before they move in to give them more leverage with housebuilders over repairing faults. Getting a snagging survey conducted before the completion date of the property can also be used as evidence if any problems are discovered after moving in, and it is generally less expensive than carrying out a HomeBuyer Report or Building Survey.

Snagging surveys are generally carried out by an independent third party. They can be costly, but the amount of money saved by identifying defects and problems that will need to be rectified in future can more than cover their fee. Some snagging companies even offer add-ons, such as thermal imaging, to improve their services and attract more customers.