What it is?
A Building Survey (which used to be called a Structural Survey) is the most comprehensive type of survey, and, of course, the most expensive. It can take several days to complete (depending on the property) and up to a fortnight to return.
The Building Survey will include all the features of a Home Buyer Report but is invasive, so the surveyor may look to open up part of the building if they consider it necessary. For example, it they suspect an issue in the cavity wall, a brick may be removed so that a camera can be inserted to examine the cavity.
A Building Survey is only recommended for large, very old, listed or dilapidated homes, and for buildings that are undergoing a change-of-use, for example, a barn conversion.
How much does it cost?
Costs vary widely according to the size and age of the property but typically start at £850.
What to expect:
Take a look at this sample Building Survey from the RICS.