Snag It! – Because brand new doesn’t always mean defect free

The main advantage of buying a new build property is that everything is fresh and new, and no maintenance or decorating is needed when you first move in. Quite rightly, most people consider their new home to be a blank canvas – ready to live in and easy to personalise much later when time and finances permit – no urgency, no stress, nothing to do except enjoy the new space.

In the main this is true however, even with a new home there can sometimes be things which aren’t quite right, and it pays to address these before maintenance and repair become your responsibility. At EHL Conveyancing we always recommend that buyers consider a Snagging Survey at the very earliest opportunity; if possible before completion, but where developers will not allow this, then certainly within the first few weeks of moving in.

So what exactly is a Snagging Survey?

A Snagging Survey is a specific property inspection carried out by a professional surveyor to identify any areas of the new build which need attention. In the main, the snags identified will most probably be cosmetic – decorating, plastering, woodwork etc. – but there may be some things which warrant a little further investigation to ensure that there is not a more serious, structural issue.

New homes are built to stringent standards but occasionally things do go wrong. Something vital to the integrity of the building may have been omitted, incorrectly installed or simply not be of high enough quality. In our opinion it is better to find out about anything like this as early as possible – definitely whilst the developers have responsibility for the maintenance and repair!

Who can carry out a Snagging Survey?

In all honesty – anyone. There are templates available online and some buyers believe it is something they can do for themselves.

We urge caution with the DIY approach for a number of reasons: -

• The move in is a busy time and it is easy to try to ‘snag as you go along’ but the survey is so important that we believe it needs sufficient time and full concentration to be effective

• Professional Surveyors will know exactly what to look for, will know what is acceptable and, most importantly, will know the tell-tale signs of something more serious requiring attention

• Getting developers to accept responsibility or prioritise repairs can be difficult, but a professional report adds credibility and demands action in the way that an informal snagging list won’t (especially if the survey is carried out by an experienced, Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors registered company)

Invest in Peace of Mind

Buying a new home is an exciting time. We want our clients to not only enjoy their new property but to also have complete confidence. Confidence that they have received it in the very best condition possible and that there are no nasty surprises lurking under the fresh new paint.

If you want the assistance of professionals to ensure that your investment is exactly as it should be then visit our website at and use our handy online conveyancing tool to get a free quotation in seconds.


The materials on this website do not constitute legal advice and are provided for general information only. Whether express or implied, no warranty is given concerning such materials. We shall not be liable for any technical, editorial, typographical, or other errors or omissions within the information provided on this website, nor shall we be responsible for the content of any web images or information linked to this website.

The information contained in this article does not constitute financial advice or recommendation and should not be considered as such. Arrow conveyancing does not offer financial advice and is not regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the authors of this article are not financial advisors and are therefore not authorised to offer financial advice.

Published on :  

January 29, 2024

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