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Structural Surveyors Report on a leaning gable end at Nottingham

Measurement with a spirt level suggest that the top fifteen course of bricks are out of plumb by 150mm from above the point at which two purlins bear into the gable wall. The top ten course of the wall are built with a single skin of bicks and are likely to be unstable. The the likely cause of the leaning wall is failure to ties it into the strcture at the time of construction.

Our surveyors suggested that the top fifteen courses of brickwork should be rebuilt with a 225mm wall that is inherently more stable. Straps set into the centre of the wall can be secured to the roof structure. The straps can be secured to the existing longitudinal timbers and to planks screwed across and perpendicular to the rafters just below each side of the apex. 18mm x 120mm x 2.4m floor boards or similar would suffice.  

Sadly in this instance the purchaser had relied on a mortgage valuation for the purchase of the late 1920's house which is thus about nintey years old. The surveyor thus had no duty to report the leaning wall to the purchaser as he was only worried about his mortgage lender. The purchaser will now have to stand the cost of about £250.00 of labour and about £750.00 of scaffold if the wall is to be properly repaired by rebuilding it. A homebuyers survey by Steve Butler Chartered Surveyors Nottingham would have cost about £400.00.

Derby RICS Chartered Surveyors Expert Report on a rght of way and parking dispute

Our RICS Nottingham Expert Witness Surveyors look at badly laid out Yellow Lines, clamping signs and whether a Derby access road is a private right of way or public highway

The dispute was about a parking ticket issued for parking on the yellow lines in a restricted zone on Full Street a public highway. The road is an access to a service yard off Full Street Derby. Steve Butler Chartered Surveyors argued for the recipient of the ticket that the car was on a private right of way and not the public highway. The City argued that the highway ended at a gully that runs across the road marked the end of the highway. Steve Butler Chartered Surveyors argued that if the gully was a juncture of public and private highway that there should be a T bar to mark the distinction and that gullies have no place in highway law. There was also a ‘no parking or you will be clamped sign’ on a car park wall just in front of where the car was parked. The City Council argued that the signs had not been put up by them despite their distinctive logo and that they owned the car park. A clamping sign on building on the opposite side of the road way was approximately mid-way between two T bars that stretch beyond where the car was parked. Our expert surveyors argued that the T bar at back of the pavement would be considered by a reasonable member of the public to be the end of the highway and that the section of road between the two T bars would be considered to be private as the clamping sign was at the centre.


Independent RICS Chartered Surveyors Report on a 1950 semi detached house Grantham 

Our Grantham RICS surveyors found severe damp problems, dangerous decking, and a collection of junk in the garden. 


 Chartered Surveyors Newark Homebuyers Report on a 1940 Terrace at Newark


Our Newark Chartered Surveyors found substandard underfloor ventilation, unvented chimneys, an inadequate roof structure, limited insulation and amateurish electrics


Independent RICS Surveyors Property Survey of a 1930 Semi detached house in Newark

Our Newark RICS homebuyers surveyors found damp floors, an uninvited guest, fractued concrete roof and widely spaced stair rails 


Homebuyers Survey of a Grantham 1910 Semi detached house by our independent property surveyors

Our Grantham Chartered Surveyors found structural cracks, a long standing leak, frost damaged bricks and a bowing ceiling whilst carrying out an RICS Homebuyers Survey of this Grantham 1910 semi detached house


Photographs from our independent RICS Chartered Surveyors Homebuyers Survey and Report on a 1932 Nottingham Terrace

Our Nottingham surveyors found leaking rain water goods, condensation and corrosion of a lintel on the survey of this 1932 Nottingham terrace house.


Property Survey Photographs of a 1930's Nottingham Terrace

These photographs were by taken by our Nottingham Chartered Surveyors during a Property Survey of a typical inter-war three bedroom house. Our Nottingham Surveyors found loose elad flashings, missing window lintels, sagging gutters, exposed metalwork on electrical fittings and salts in a roof void chimney breast. Click on the above links to see what else our Chartered Surveyors were able to find.


Property Survey Photographs of a 1970's Nottingham Bungalow

 Front of 1930's Semi Damaged weather proofing Mising Lintel  Meatal Casing Salts on Chimney Breast

These photographs were by taken by our Nottingham Chartered Surveyors during a Property Survey of a late 1970's bungalow. Our Nottingham  Surveyors found a root infested drain, a  garage wall distored by heavey clay and substandard electrical fittings. 



Steve Butler Chartered Surveyor has lived in Nottingham all his life and is thus very familiar with the area. He attended Nottingham Trent University to take his Chartered Surveyors examinations. Steve has been surveying, valuing and managing a portfolio of properties in Nottingham since qualifying as Chartered Surveyor in 1992. Steve Butler has also passed the Government's Home Inspector Examinations and is a qualified commercial energy surveyor and associate member of the Chartered Institution of Legal Executives.


Low Fees

Our RICS surveyors provide a rapid response in the Derby and Notingham and areas at low cost. Homebuers Report and Building Survey prices are fixed and as there is no hidden VAT so you know exactly where you are.



If you are you buying a property in Nottingham and Derby then a pre-purchase Building or Homebuyers Survey may help avoid future expenses.

Our RICS surveyors specialise in surveying and valuing residential property in Nottingham and Derby, offering a rapid turnaround with efficient and competitive service.

An RICS Building Survey will tell you about the condition of the property including the state of the chimneys, roofs, rainwater goods, roof edges, walls, floors, ceilings, partitions, windows and doors. We can tell you whether there is any structural movement or settlement, wet rot, dry rot, woodworm or damp problems. We give you an overview of the services such as the electrical installations, boiler, central heating, hot and cold water.


RICS Building Surveys: Click for sample report

RICS Building Surveys provides a more detailed picture of a property’s construction and can be carried out on practically all residential properties.

The report is bespoke and tailored to your requests.

It is most suitable when the building is less conventional. This could be because it is very old, it has been built using unusual construction methods, or it is dilapidated. Similarly, it can be very informative if a building has been extensively altered


RICS Homebuyer Reports: Click for sample report

A standardized report produced by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) to highlight significant problems and matters requirng urgent investigation.

It is designed to flag up major defects and problems that need urgent or significant attention, because such issues will affect the property’s value.

It is the cost effective choice for the majority of property purchasers.

A valuation of the property and estimation of reinstatement cost for insurance purposes is included as standard in both our Building Survey  and Homebuyers Survey reports.

Due to the time taken to measure the property Building Surveys cost considerably more than the Homebuyers Report, however you should bear in mind that they are unlikely to find any serious defects to the property that the Homebuyers Survey and Report will not.

It is considered that the Homebuyers Survey and Report will be suitable for most clients.

All Building Survey and Homebuyers Reports are undertaken by Steve Butler RICS Chartered Surveyor personally ensuring that personalized service to all our clients.


Surveyors Defect Photographs from Homebuyers Building and Structural Surveys in Nottingham Newark Grantham

Here is how a small problem becomes a big problem when nothing is done about an initially small defect. In this instance a failure of a valley gutter has allowed water to drip into a side porch until it has eventually decayed the rafters and roof plate. The rafters are now hanging from the apex of the roof unsupported at the base and the ceiling has also collapsed. The repair will be expensive whereas the initial leak might have been stopped for a few or tens of pounds.

This Nottingham garage has distorted. The distortion shows as horizontal fracture on the wall of the garage and the wall below the fracture being out of plumb having been pushed into the garage. The likely cause is heavy wet clay leaning against the garage. The wall adjacent to the retained ground should have been engineered to act as a retaining wall.

This photograph shows that wall from inside the garage. Our Nottingham surveyors recommended digging a trench against the garage and filling it with stone chippings to improve drainage.


Note the narrow sides of the dormer window in this dated roof conversion. They are unlikely to be insulated and will be particularly cold because of the lead cladding used to water proof the sides. There is a high risk of condensation forming on the sides of the internal faces unless heating and ventilation are very well manged. It might be possible remove the plaster and install rigid insulation sheets. The timber window frame will be difficult to redecorate without an expensive scaffold and will probably be left to rot until it is replaced with plastic.

Amaturish wires

You don’t need to be a surveyor to know that this is a Sunday afternoon job. A professional would have ensured that the wires have protection from mechanical damage preferably with metal casing. They would have also ensured that the sockets are above floor level so that they cannot be damaged by a vacuum cleaner. Skirting board mounted sockets were popular in cheap 1980's and 1990's rewires as a means of avoiding damaging wall paper above the skirting board level.

Easement over roof

Here is a small and unusual potential easement. For some reason the owner of the overflow pipe has decided to drain it over the roof of the adjacent property rather than their own. The juncture of the properties can be seen at the step in the roof levels next to the soil and vent pipe. At present the pipe is probably just the nuisance of trespassing but if the owner of the pipe is allowed to carry on unchallenged for twenty years then they may succeed in acquiring an easement which would give them a permenant interest. In this case the matter is likely to be trivial but in other cases failure to take action against somebody using your land can have serious consequences as rights that are very detrimental to the value of your property can be acquired.

 Plastic undersheet

Plastic used to line a roof void in a 1930's house. Such roofs did not have liners as seen in most post war roofs. The undersides of the tiles were either lined with mortar in in high specification houses timber planks. The mortar and timber planks stop wind disturbing tiles on the roof in extreme weather conditions and also help stop rain driving within the roof by acting as a barrier to the wind. The plastic liner has probably been installed to stop mortar breaking out from between the tiles and collecting as dust on the roof void floor or things stored in the roof void. The plastic may prevent ventilation increasing the risk of condensation. Our surveyors always suggest plastic liners are removed from roof voids.

Straps and bracing

This is a post war roof structure built of a number of factory assembled trusses that are lined up in a row with a crane. When they first became popular they were only connected together with the battens on which the tiles sit. This caused some such roof structures to topple over like a row of dominos in extreme weather conditions. To combat this horizontal and diagonal bracing timbers were installed in roofs after about 1970 to tie the structures together so that all the trusses act as one structure. This roof does not have the bracing timber that would be expected to be seen running across the trusses just below the apex. It is also good practice to strap the end building of the structure to the roof structure to ensure that they are restrained. Here the steps can be seen nailed to two of the trusses. However it is better practice to nail a timber across the trusses and then nail the straps to the timber.









For Birmingham Surveyors check out our surveyors websites at Sutton Coldfield and Solihull 

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