There has been much publicity recently on television and in the national press, snagging is the new “buzz word” when it comes to the purchase of new homes.
The number of companies offering snagging inspections on new homes has increased and it can be difficult for the new home buyer to select the company most able to give the best value and service. Here is a guide on what to you should consider.
Who owns the company?
- Who owns the company, what is their background, how much construction experience do they have and what qualifies them to be able to operate a snagging company?
- Is the/are the owner(s) of the company involved with it on a full-time, daily basis?
- Can you speak with them without being passed around the office like a hot potato?
Personal care and experience are essential
The competence of the inspectors is perhaps the most important consideration.
- What are their qualifications and experience?
- Are all the inspectors interviewed and assessed?
- Do the inspectors have a thorough knowledge of the latest building regulations and NHBC standards?
Level of service
- Are the staff trained and knowledgeable working from an established office that will be able to provide you with help and advice over the telephone, not just for the initial inspection, but throughout the two year warranty?
- How quickly are they able to carry out the inspection and produce a professional report for the builder to action?
- Does the inspection service extend nation-wide or is it confined to one locality? A national company will undoubtedly have more experience than a local company.
- How long does the report take to produce? Ideally a report should be back next day 24 hrs or failing that 48 hrs. The housebuilder will need the report as quickly as possible so that items identified can be attended to. If you do not get a time guarantee, use a different company.
Do they work for the builders?
- Can the company deal professionally but resolutely with housebuilders, or are they in partnership with them providing services for builders? This may influence and regulate how thorough your inspection is. It is impossible for a snagging company to remain impartial when they rely on the business they get from housebuilders. It puts the company and the client in a compromising position.
Of course those that work for the builders will claim they are helping to raise the standards in the industry and to some extent, this can be true. It is impossible to conceive that any company which purports to act on behalf of the homeowner could snag other properties by the same builder and not have the consequences of a bad report in the back of their mind.
Value for Money
Sometimes it’s only possible to judge when it is too late! However, you should consider the following questions:-
- Does the service provided include revisiting the home to check defects have been dealt with?
- Does the service provided include dealing with any problems or disputes with the builder for the full two-year warranty or does it just provide a one-off inspection report?
- Why should a company ask you to pay in advance or make a deposit for a service that you have yet to receive? Any company that cannot fund its operations without having your payment in advance does not either trust its clients to pay or has cash flow difficulties.
- Is the website full of useful accessible information that house buyers want or is it mere self-promotion?
- Are there useful links to other sites, which can provide relevant information for the new homebuyer?
- Are testimonials from satisfied clients provided on the website?
- Can you see a sample report on the website? Why hide what the service involves, if it is good then everyone should be able to see what a typical report is like.
It is always a good idea to compare costs. Websites: select a company where the costs are simple and clearly laid out are more likely to be best. Find out what is included in the fee. Do not assume that most expensive is the best, larger companies will be able to make use of economies of scale and therefore pass on cost savings to their customers.
- Does the quoted price include or exclude VAT?
- Does the inspection company you have selected carry professional indemnity insurance against advising you poorly? It is all too easy to set up an inspection company, but insurers will only insure companies that have professionally qualified inspectors. So ask to see a copy of their policy
If you are looking for a reputable snagging inspection company, then reach out to us here at Citi Snagging. We are backed by many years of experience within the industry, with unmatched insight into the mindset of property developers, our surveyors are truly specialists. It is vital that you assess the condition of the property with a critical eye to offer the best snagging inspection. Even minor faults can lead to more serious issues in the future. Contact our team at firstname.lastname@example.org now.