What is a new build snagging survey? A quick guide

Purchasing a new build home is an exciting venture, offering the promise of a fresh start in a property that has never been lived in before. However, the allure of pristine walls and untouched appliances should not distract from the essential steps required to ensure your new home is in perfect condition. 

Among these steps, the new build snagging survey stands out as a critical measure every new homeowner should consider. 

This guide will explore what a snagging survey entails, its importance, the issues it covers, and how Sett Mortgages can assist in your new build purchase journey.

What is a new build snagging survey?

A new build snagging survey is a thorough inspection designed to identify issues in new homes before the buyer moves in. 

Unlike standard home surveys, which assess used properties for signs of wear or damage, snagging surveys focus on defects in new constructions. These can range from minor cosmetic issues to significant structural problems, all of which can detract from the value and enjoyment of your new home.

Performed by professional surveyors, these inspections cover a comprehensive list of elements within and around the property. The goal is to compile a report of “snags,” or problems, that the builder is obliged to fix, usually under warranty and at no extra cost to the homeowner. Snagging surveys are a unique aspect of buying a new build, reflecting the reality that even newly constructed homes can have their flaws.

Understanding the importance of snagging surveys

The importance of snagging surveys cannot be overstated. They serve as a form of quality control, ensuring that your new home meets the standards promised by the developer. Without this survey, homeowners might not notice issues until they become more significant problems, potentially leading to costly repairs down the line.

Having a professional snagging survey done can strengthen your position when dealing with builders or developers. It provides a detailed, independent assessment of the property’s condition, which can be invaluable if disputes arise about the necessity of repairs or the quality of workmanship. A snagging survey is not just about identifying problems but about safeguarding your investment and ensuring your new home is exactly as it should be — in perfect condition.

What do snagging surveys cover?

Snagging surveys include a wide range of potential issues, from the foundational to the purely aesthetic. Below, we delve into the types of problems these surveys typically identify.

Structural issues

At the heart of any new build snagging survey is the examination of structural integrity. This includes checking the foundations, walls, floors, and roofs for signs of poor construction or potential weaknesses. While structural problems are rare in new builds, identifying them early is crucial for safety and for preventing extensive costs later.

Cosmetic imperfections

Cosmetic issues are more common in new builds and can range from minor annoyances to significant eyesores. Snagging surveys look for problems like uneven paintwork, improperly fitted fixtures, or damage to surfaces that occurred during construction. Addressing these issues early can prevent dissatisfaction and ensure your home looks as good as it was meant to.

Safety hazards

Safety is paramount in any home, and snagging surveys pay special attention to potential hazards. This includes checking electrical installations, gas connections, and the proper fitting of appliances and systems designed to keep you safe. Identifying and rectifying such issues before moving in can prevent accidents and provide peace of mind.

Finishing touches

Beyond the more significant structural and safety concerns, snagging surveys also assess the finishing touches of the property. This can include the proper operation of windows and doors, the condition of flooring, and the functionality of included appliances. Even small issues in these areas can significantly impact your enjoyment of the home.

External features

Lastly, a comprehensive snagging survey examines external features of the property, such as drainage, guttering, landscaping, and boundary walls or fences. Problems outside can affect the property’s overall condition and value, making this a vital area of the survey.

When should I get a snagging survey done?

Ideally, a snagging survey should be conducted before you legally complete the purchase of your new build home. This timing allows any identified issues to be addressed by the developer before you move in, minimising inconvenience. 

However, if this is not possible, most developers will still address snags identified within the first two years of ownership, under the warranty period. The key is to schedule the survey as early as possible to ensure any problems are rectified swiftly.

What to do with your snagging survey report

Once you have your snagging survey report, the next steps involve communicating with your developer to have the snags addressed. The report should be detailed and clear, providing a strong basis for any requests for remedial work. 

It’s important to maintain a constructive relationship with the developer during this process, providing them with the opportunity to fix the issues within a reasonable timeframe. If disputes arise, the report serves as a crucial document to support your case, potentially involving warranty providers or legal advice if necessary.

Sett Mortgages can help you buy a new build

Starting on the journey to purchase a new build home is an exciting prospect, and Sett Mortgages is here to support you every step of the way. 

From understanding the nuances of mortgage applications for new builds to guiding you through the process of snagging surveys, our team offers expert advice tailored to your unique situation. We believe in making the mortgage process as straightforward and stress-free as possible, allowing you to focus on the excitement of moving into your new home.

Sett Mortgages ensures that your new build purchase is not just a transaction but a well-supported journey into homeownership. Whether it’s securing the best mortgage terms for you or offering insights into the snagging process, we’re here to help make your dream home a reality — without the snags. Contact us today to learn more.


Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.


  • Elliott Benson

    Meet Elliott, a seasoned mortgage broker with over nine years of experience in property, and the founder of Sett Mortgages. With a background as a sales negotiator and mortgage services manager, he is a trusted professional with extensive knowledge in all things mortgages. Elliott's empathetic approach and clear communication style make him an approachable expert, decoding the complexities of mortgages for clients from diverse backgrounds. He stays up-to-date with the latest trends and regulations, offering cutting-edge solutions tailored to clients' needs. Committed to their financial well-being, he guides them through the mortgage process, ensuring countless successful and satisfied clients. Elliott's passion extends beyond his practice; he's a prolific writer, sharing his knowledge and insights in industry publications and blogs. His mission is to empower others with the information they need to make sound financial decisions.

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Your home or property may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.