When it comes to buying or leasing commercial real estate, there are many things to think about. One vital job to get done is surveying the property itself. This will allow you to get an accurate idea of its worth and also the condition that the real estate is in before you commit to it. Many people will be used to getting a survey done for private property deals, but it is also something to do for commercial properties.
What is a commercial survey?
In essence, a commercial survey on a piece of real estate performs the same function as a survey on private housing. It allows you to get an accurate idea of the value and condition so that when you buy or enter into a lease on the property, you do so armed with all the information you need.
Commercial surveys are usually more comprehensive than domestic ones due to the nature of commercial real estate. Commercial buildings can often use different materials or design processes from standard houses, which the surveyor you use will need to fully look into for any issues.
A commercial survey can also help to formally document the condition of the property when you have first leased it, so you can avoid any costly litigation around any repairs that the landlord may claim you need to cover. It can also help with finding out about costly repair jobs before you buy or sign the lease – very often in commercial leases, the tenant is liable for any repairs that need doing while there, which can be a costly surprise for you.
Five reasons why commercial surveys make sense
If you would like to find out just how a commercial survey can help your business, then read on:
- Reduction in business rates – if there is one bugbear for every business landlord, it is the business rates that they pay. This is usually calculated using a rateable value that your local authority will then use to work out how much you should pay. Not many businesses know, but you can challenge this and get your business rates lowered if successful. A commercial survey from RVA Surveyors can help with this as it is an area in which they specialise. It is always worth using a surveyor that specialises in specific areas for tasks like this.
- Effective property management – leasing or buying a commercial property is naturally a large financial commitment. A commercial survey allows you to produce a maintenance plan for the property that can take into account any defects that have been noted and the schedule to deal with them. This is key so that you can plan properly for the maintenance needed and spread the risk.
- Health and safety – one area that a commercial survey is vital for is health and safety. All businesses need to comply with the law in this area, and this includes the premises that their staff work in. A commercial survey will allow any issues to be picked up on and rectified before they become a bigger issue.
- Avoid any nasty surprises – as with a domestic survey, a big reason to have a commercial survey is to avoid any nasty shocks. This could be after signing the lease, buying the property, or at the end of your lease contract. No one wants to move into their new premises and have the wall fall off within the first week, after all! Similarly, it will also help you fully understand your lease responsibilities.
- Help ask the right questions – without a commercial survey, you are effectively going into the transaction to lease or buy blind. You have no idea of what questions you or your lawyer should be asking about the property or any issues it may have.
Get a commercial survey done
By now, it should be obvious that getting a commercial survey done is vital. It means that you not only go into the property transaction with your eyes open but also with a clear understanding of the value. It also flags up any issues that may need dealing with and allows you to plan for the future maintenance of the premises. Once in the premises as tenant or owner, it can also to help reduce your business costs.
Of course, it is key to find a reputable and experienced commercial surveyor to do this, so you get the full benefit that this service brings. With the completed commercial survey in hand, you will have all the information that you need to move forward.