We get a lot of calls on a weekly basis here at Home Heroes for all of the services we offer and I am not scared to admit I probably convert around 30% of the enquiries to good quality leads that move to the next phase, now in reality 30% is a horrible conversion rate getting an enquiry is costly and in a lot of businesses this would be classed as a failure.
I am not worried because I know why this is. We are not cheap in fact we are probably in the top 10% for survey costs in the area. Strangely about average for Party Wall Matters.
Which I find really strange, See this is the first issue I charge about the same regardless of the task being undertaken whereas a lot of surveyors charge a lot more for certain tasks, like party wall work.
Its also worth mentioning now, of that 30 % we don’t end up doing the work in about 80% of cases. We pass the qualified lead (free of charge no cost to you or the surveyor) to someone we feel is qualified and able to offer a reasonable service for the specialism you have requested, as we feel this is the best way to help you.
Shouldn’t all-time cost the same?
Let’s put that into perspective, some surveyors fee for a HomeBuyers Report (Now a Level 2 Survey) will cost you £400 on a £400k house but they will charge £125 P/H as a Party Wall Surveyor so £400 equates to 3.2 hours of party wall work.
The problem I have with this is its the same surveyor so if there worth £125 as a Party Wall Surveyor does that mean your home buyer report is taking less than 3.2 hours (Including Desktop Research, Travel, On-site Survey and Report writing) the short answer is no in most cases surveyors are diligent and will give you a reasonable standard of report, but why is one task cheaper than the other when its the same person.
We are not the cheapest but we don’t keep it a secret.
Our pricing has never been a secret, in fact, it has been on the site since day one, you can view it here as can every single visitor to this site, the fees are reasonably fixed. I’ve been known to offer a discount for a bulk booking or even if I really want to do the survey (usually a beautiful historic building and not listed on the matrix so very large surveys) That being said I don’t do a survey every day at most there would be 8-10 a month giving me plenty of time to produce a quality survey and offer great customer service.
It is fair to say the base price of our surveys are much higher with them increasing marginally based on price and more specifically rooms, the larger jumps as traditionally the larger properties have larger grounds and additional rooms and thus cost more but this cost is proportional. This is the reason our heritage surveys cost more as additions and changes can take a couple of hours in addition to a standard report.
A few things that come as standard with our surveys, we are usually on-site for several hours, in fact, it is not uncommon for us to be asked why it takes so long, it’s not unusual for me to be on-site for 6 hours for a particularly rough Level 3 survey, the way I book work in affords me the opportunity to “follow the trail” and leave no stone unturned and this is the way I like things.
An adaptable survey report
Firstly we use a custom word document for our reports, designed to comply with the Home Survey Standards 2020 and offer you our customers the best possible experience while also allowing us to avoid having to pay RICS Licence Fees for each survey and having cookie-cutter surveys which are of no use to our clients. We’ve taken the good bits out of all the survey products, on the market and adapted them. Using a word based product allows us to add sections split them and adapt the survey to suit the property we are surveying.
Our Surveys are Different.
We use high-level photography in all surveys where weather and local conditions permits, this allows us to see up to 10 m from the ground and allows us to view all the roof, the flat roof, even check valleys and gutters for debris build-up and damage. Its great for looking at a chimney too, the pole cam is one of my favourite tools you can see some photos I’ve taken using it here. There is no additional charge for this
In addition to the pole cam, we also utilise state of the art 360 degrees images for our internal surveys again these are used at no extra cost if time allows and there is a benefit to the survey we will use this technology. If we utilise the technology we will make the photos available via a google drive folder for the potential homeowner so they can view the rooms in 360 degrees so they can remember what the rooms look like and visualise where the problems are.
If a room is particularly troublesome we can even hotspot those 360 degrees photos so you can visually see the issues again we don’t do this on every survey and in every room but we have the ability and we don’t charge extra for it. See the below example
This can be offered as a bolt-on for all defects we discover internally
If I have it with me and I feel the survey would benefit from its use out comes the thermo-imaging camera and it will be used to get information for you, i.e to see if a particular fault is being caused by what I feel it is and this will save you an additional visit or the visit of a specialist.
I take hundreds of digital photos of all types, Normal, high-level and 360 and those which make it into the report are annotated where appropriate so they are easy to understand and direct you to the problem. I feel this is genuinely beneficial to our customers to see the example below
Our average Level 3 survey is just over 90 pages full of screen captures, infographics and photos. This takes time to compile and the work that goes into the report after a 3-6 hour survey can be twice the time that was on-site. This is the reason our default delivery is PDF not only is it better for the environment but it allows you to zoom in and view the photos and annotations as we saw them on the screen.
Our standard turn around time is 2-5 working days to allow us the time to really reflect on the survey. Typical Workflow will be to scan the site notes, get the photos off of our devices, upload them to google drive and then begin pulling out photos to use within the report. Then we will come back to it and write the report annotating and manipulating photos as needed to give you the best possible service.
So I feel our surveys are exceptionally good value for money, not only do you get a qualified surveyor, with all the best on-site kit available to them, who has the time and experience to do what needs to be on site.
In addition to this, you get graphics drawn for reports, the best technology available with 360 degree photos shared, specialist 360 defect hotspots where needed and appropriate, a high-level pole cam and someone to talk to on the phone after a survey if you need it.
All in all, we provide a professional friendly service and our fees may not be the cheapest but they are fair for the product and experience we offer. I am often told they are more expensive than others, I am aware and I hope this post helps you to understand why.
Home Heroes Limited are a Construction Consultancy based in Canterbury, Kent Specialising as Party Wall Surveyors, Building Surveyors Canterbury and Historic Building Consultants you can contact us by filling in the contact form, emailing [email protected] or calling 01227 806334
We cover Canterbury, Margate, Ramsgate, Whitstable, Herne Bay, Folkestone, Dover, Deal, Ash, Sandwich, Faversham, Sittingbourne and Other Kent Locations for all Our Party Wall, Building Surveys, Level 1, Level 2 and Level 3 Surveys