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Things You Should Know About Listed Building Surveyor

Listed building surveyors play a crucial role in preserving UK’s national heritage buildings and structures. Also, the job responsibilities of a listed building surveyor is very versatile and help them earn a good amount of money. 

However, this article will give you an overview of these professionals and a brief idea of the UK’s listed and historic building surveys.

Table of Contents

Who is a Listed Building Surveyor?

Listed building surveyors are professionals who would advise their clients regarding existing properties, historic properties. In addition, they also suggest the ones under construction. Their advice is on various disciples such as new designs available for a building and extension costs.

Similarly,  renovation, the market value of a property are included too. They are also known as historic building surveyors. Because a considerable part of their work involves researching and analysing, it also includes preserving historic structures by carrying out landmark building surveys. 

Therefore, we can say that listed buildings are similar to historic buildings. They work for both clients, government and real estate companies. These works are versatile.  Because listed building surveyors would work for all sizes of buildings.

Building surveyor working on site

Responsibilities of a listed building surveyor 

A list of some of the responsibilities of listed building surveyors include:

  • Making sure that the construction takes place on time in the given budget.
  • Valuing an asset. Banks or other financial institutions hire them to evaluate a specific asset. It regards loan refinancing or a new home or equipment loan.
  • Scheduled meetings with clients to discuss ongoing construction projects.
  • Building inspection- to look for any faults or damage.
  • Preparing relevant paperwork- insurance assessments, tenders, legal notices.
  • Advising clients on sustainability and other environmental factors. All of these might affect building designs and construction.
  • Advising the health and safety issues associated with a constriction.

Therefore, we can say that their job responsibilities match a lot with a professional auditor. Because financial auditor digs down into every nook and corner of an organisation.  They look for any type of faults.  A listed building surveyor also does something similar.

They carry out listed building surveys to identify and note any unauthorised extensions or alterations in a listed building. 

Lastly, an auditor also gives comments and feedbacks to fix the issues they have found while auditing. 

Similarly, a listed building surveyor will provide you with suggestions on any future renovations that need to be made. They have their own set of rules and regulations set by the UK government to carry out these listed building surveys and abide by them.

A list of listed building surveyors is available on LPOC’s site. It would be handy for both owners and listed building surveyors

Existing or potential owners can put an ad for properties for sale. They also look for reliable listed building surveyors to carry out their listed building surveys.  It is for renovations, alterations, etc. 

What is a listed building survey?

The other name for listed building surveys is “historic building surveys.” UK Secretary of State describes listed buildings as historical interests or unique architectural buildings. 

The listed building surveys include buildings and national assets. They hold a vital cultural and heritage significance. 

Although a structure is classified as a listed or historic building, it might not be grand and beautiful structures from its outlook. Small designs such as water pumps, types of machinery, etc., might even be listed in the listed building survey. 

In addition, listed buildings cannot be demolished, renovated, or altered without special permission from the UK government.  This rule set by the UK government has only one primary objective: preserving the heritage sites or monuments. 

Historic site of Great Britain

Listed and historic building surveys are grouped into three categories: Grade I, Grade II*, and Grade II. But, what are the main differences between these two grades? 

Grade I

Grade I category buildings hold an extraordinary historical, architectural, and national significance. 

These buildings or structures hold the highest value for a particular nation, termed red inexpensive federal heritage buildings. They have an exceptional level of social interest.

Examples of some Grade I buildings in the UK are Edinburgh Castle, London Bridge, Buckingham Palace, and Manchester Liverpool Road Railway Station.

Grade II & Grade II

Grade II category buildings in the UK are further divided into two parts. The more important ones are labelled as Grade II.

Those that hold a little less significance and only keep a specific national interest are labelled as Grade II*. 

The numbers of Grade II buildings are 90% higher than the Grade II* one. 

Grade II buildings hold a particular interest from the government and can be any religious building or complex. 

But the owner needs to request the local council to renovate the holding since it holds national interest and the government tries its best to preserve them. For example, Broomhill pool, BT Tower, and Whitechapel Bell Foundry. 

However, Grade II* buildings hold only a minimal level of particular interest from the government. For example, include Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral, Rise Hall, and Capel Manor House.

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Listed building surveys/ historic building surveys

Listed/historic building surveys need to be carried out by a highly experienced building surveyor. 

However, these buildings need to be older than 1850 for a survey to be carried out. 

There are some specific guidelines listed in  RICS Guidelines for Surveyors. All the professional listed building surveyors need to follow these guidelines before undertaking their tasks. 

Historic Building

Most importantly, the guideline states that listed building surveyors have to be familiar with the buildings. They have to have a clear understanding of the building history and type of structure beforehand.  

Listed building surveys are very complicated because it has historic buildings also have a story and emotion attached. 

Therefore, the surveyors need to be fully efficient for this. They need to be extra careful before suggesting any renovations too. 

However, a slight mistake of asking the client to change a particular door can bring a big problem in their professional career.

However, you must be wondering that since these listed building surveys are very complicated, they must be super expensive too, right? 

Well, the answer is yes. 

Although, depending on the level of surveys, costs would vary from one surveyor to another. Prices would range from a minimum of £300 to a maximum of £4000 or even more. 

On top of that, such high prices are because all of the listed building surveys need to be performed on-site with much research on the building and its history. 

The UK government’s legal legislation and rules mark that this listed building is a significant national heritage and holds many national interests.  Therefore, the listed building surveyors charge a high amount of money.

Types and costs of listed building survey reports

There are three types or levels of listed building surveys as per RICS guidelines.

Condition Report  

Conditional reports give a clear understanding of the building to the new or potential clients. This report includes the risks and legal issues that can arise in the future and identifies any defects in the property.  

It will help you manage the building in different ways that would benefit you and the government in the long run. These reports would not provide any professional advice from the listed building surveyor, neither will they conduct a valuation on the property.

Moreover, this report signals the clients about any potential hazards relating to the property. The costs are very cheap due to this. You can get a conditional report for only £200-400.  

Homebuyer report

A HomeBuyer Report is a study appropriate for regular properties insensible condition. Costs start at £500 and can exceed according to the nature of the work. 

It will help you see any underlying issues, like subsidence or clammy, just as some other secret unwanted problems inside and outside. The HomeBuyer Report doesn’t look past the flooring planks or behind the dividers. Some house purchasers’ reports incorporate a property valuation. 

Therefore, you could reconsider your offer if the overview uncovers a lower cost than the home loan moneylender’s valuation. But, If there’s no valuation included, you could utilise the report’s ideas for fixes to reconsider the cost. 

For instance, if it might cost you £4000 to complete work on the property’s distorted floorings and damp ceilings, so you should be offering an amount near to this. 

Listed building survey

This survey provides a piece of in-depth knowledge of the building. These surveys are usually carried out for older properties because they need significant extensions and alterations. 

In addition, a  point-by-point report provides you with a top-to-bottom investigation of the property’s condition. Also, it features a scope of issues that remember guidance for deformities, fixes, and support alternatives.

Included with the RIC Building Survey are exhortation sheets on the best way to manage a portion of the more normal issues that have been found at the property. 

Besides that, it includes a framework of fix alternatives and the outcomes of not addressing any potential issues featured inside the report.

These reports can range from £500-1000. However, the process would be a bit higher if the valuation for the property is included too.

Valuation Survey

This survey helps determine the overall market value of any property. It can be a rental, sale, or even a listed property. 

The valuation of a property allows marketers or real estate agents to determine a price for their listing. 

The costs associated with this survey depend on the property size to a greater extent. It would range roughly from £500 to £2000. 

The valuation reports would help you compare the property’s price with other listed building properties in the area.

Similarly, you can also go back to the property seller and bargain on the price based on this lender’s valuation report carried out by a professional listed building surveyor.

Related: How to Become a Building Surveyor: A Beginners’ Guide

How to become a listed building surveyor?

As mentioned earlier, you would find a professional listed building surveyor in either RPSA or RICS. These websites have a range of surveyors listed for different locations all over the United Kingdom. 

You need to keep in mind that these surveyors are members of a recognised professional body.  Such as RPSA (Residential Property Surveyors Association) or RICS (Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors). 

Moreover, These professional governing bodies would only accept members to accredited listed building surveyors

Becoming a listed building surveyor To become a listed building surveyor and get accredited, you can enrol in a Building Surveyor Training. Furthermore, this course would give you a deep understanding of listed building surveys and techniques. It would also qualify you as an accredited surveyor.

Therefore, it allows you to work legally as a listed building surveyor in the United Kingdom. It might get a bit challenging to find a job as a listed building surveyor straight away. But, you have to work hard and look for one.

Although, once you get exposed to the industry and gain a good professional experience, the sky is your limit. These professionals are high in demand in the UK because of many historic sites, both in the Grade I & II categories.

Also, the surveys and techniques they carry out are more complex than a standard building survey, increasing their demand even more.

Building Surveyor Training Hide
Become a qualified building surveyor and equip yourself with the skills fill out the role of inspecting buildings and construction sites
Building Surveyor Training Hide
Become a qualified building surveyor and equip yourself with the skills fill out the role of inspecting buildings and construction sites


The listed and historic building surveys help in maintaining the sites that hold some level of government interest. These surveys not only help to preserve them but also makes them available for tourists. 

Moreover, This helps increase revenue for the country in the broader picture.  Hundreds of tourists visit the United Kingdom every year. They see all these historic buildings and sites such as Buckingham Palace. 

However, if these buildings were not looked after well, it would downgrade their market value and importance to the general public. The profession of a listed building surveyor or a historic building surveyor is highly in demand all over the UK for this reason.

Therefore, if you want to start a profession in this sector, go for it. It would give you excellent professional recognition and a chance to nurture the UK’s listed and historic buildings. 

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December 6, 2021

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