Structural Surveys Mallorca

Common questions and survey fees :-

For an immediate quote call 0034 653733066                                

(Also see main home page) - Surveyors Mallorca 


Why have a structural survey?

surveyor mallorca

You can save money and avoid problems by having a survey carried out on a prospective purchase property. Buying a high value property in Mallorca (Majorca) or Spain does not automatically infer that the build is of high quality and indeed many very smart and well located properties can prove to suffer significant defects (as for many cheaper properties). For this reason a high value property can simply mean higher investment risk, so appointing a professional building surveyor to asses the condition of your chosen Mallorca property is strongly advised.

The less obvious defects spotted by the building surveyor can be used to negotiate a lower price and knowing the true condition of a building will help you to make better investment decisions when buying in Mallorca the Balearics and Spain. 



Construction techniques in the Spanish territories are often quite different to those in northern Europe, the US, Russia and other countries, and the survey will point out the benefits, disadvantages and implications of various build methods and allow you to evaluate one property type against another. (Reports can be produced in any language subject to the translation fee*).

surveyors in mallorca
Defects which are more prevalent in Spain and Mallorca include:- Insect attack (including termites), damp, steel reinforced concrete decay, water pipe decay and slope subsidence to name just a few. The structural survey will assess the building for signs of these and many other possible defects and includes damp meter inspection. CCTV camera inspections are also available where required. Whilst surveyors in Mallorca may be rare, defects in buildings (new and old) are common. 
For new build properties, an interim inspection of the structural elements (prior to completion and final payment) can be highly valuable, in order to highlight any significant omissions or defects which might be covered up later and to help ensure that the constructor addresses any issues, essentially before they have received all monies. Works vigilance is also a common surveyor function, as architect control can be poor in Spain. A snagging service on completion is also available.

In addition to surveys for prospective buyers, existing owners may need advice on specific known defects such as timber insect infestation ongoing subsidence or damp. Investigative opening up of elements and written expert  opinions can also be prepared for court actions and ‘Decenal’ (10 year) insurance policy claims. If your purchase is new and 'guaranteed' it is important that you still have a survey. Claiming against the constructor, architect or decenal insurers is costly and typically requires the slow process of a court action.


Are Building Surveyors the same as Architects or Engineers?

Building Surveying is a specialist ‘stand alone’ profession. While Building Surveyors also train in design, draughtsmanship and structural calculations, importantly they undergo specialist training in the recognition and understanding of building structure and fabric related defects, remedial solutions and materials. Building Surveyors therefore predominantly specialise in structural condition surveys, while Architects generally specialise in new build and  reformation design and specification issues, and Engineers specialise in structural calculations and structural specification for both new build and reparation works. Whilst the professions share some common ground, Engineers and Architects are not Building Surveyors, just as GP’s are not Dentists, so it’s important that the client consults the right professional for the right task or stage of works. In Europe, Building Surveying is very much a British profession, which is why some estate agents may tell you that ‘they don’t do surveys in Mallorca or Spain’, whilst it is correct that surveys are less common, there are a hand full of English Surveyors in Spain and the islands that offer their services, predominately catering for the demand from UK and other English speaking buyers. We produce reports in English or Spanish (we are happy to arrange professional translation of the report in any language subject to an additional fee), such that these buyers can fully understand what they are purchasing. (NB:- there are 19 different and diverse types of surveyor, from Arts and Antiques to Mineral Surveyors. ‘Building Surveyors’ are the ones that specialise in Structural Surveys. Always check that your surveyor is degree qualified in Building Surveying, belongs to a recognised chartered professional body and holds professional indemnity insurance.Their qualifications should also be officially recognised and registered in the Spanish territories.


The Consejo General de la Arquitectura Tecnica de Espana (CGATE), officially define ‘Building Surveyor’ as ‘Experto en Construcción’ – ‘Expert in Construction’.


Is a mortgage lender valuation the same?

Most mortgage lenders will send their in house valuer (‘Tasador’)  to assess whether or not a property is worth the money being loaned, in order that, should repossession be necessary, the lender can recoup the loan. As property generally goes up in value and borrowing is rarely 100% of the value, the mortgage lender’s valuation will normally be very quick (20 mins) and rarely focus in detail on any issues. As valuation is for the lender rather than the buyer, the buyer will not normally get any form of advice or structural report. A lender’s survey or valuation should therefore never be relied upon as a structural assessment of a property. Whilst a property might be cleared for lending purposes, it may still suffer from serious insect attack, rising damp, subsidence etc. In contrast an average structural survey of a high value property involves 3hrs or more on site.

What does a survey cost?

Survey fees* depend on the type of survey and size of property. Given that property is a substantial investment, a full written report is highly recommended. The fee for a survey inspection and written report including photos and remedial advice/costings is typically 0.1% of the property value (for properties over €1m*). Clients that are in Spain or the islands may sometimes opt for the cost saving alternative of a surveyor accompanied walk through. On site verbal advice for existing owners, where known defects (e.g. decayed timbers, structural cracking, defective pools or retaining walls) need assessment is also available. Written reports on specific issues are available for an additional charge including invasive investigation (opening up) of defect areas and non invasive (Micro CCTV camera) inspection.

Advantage Building Surveys focus on providing clients with a high quality service (client testimonials/references are available on request). Contact Mark Paddon T 0034 962807247 M 0034 653733066 (7 days)  for free initial advice and an immediate fixed survey quotation.  

*Travel expenses may apply. Please telephone or e-mail the details of the property (No of bedrooms or m2 of residence, location and price) for a fixed survey quotation.
The identification of any significant visually evident defects by the surveyor will normally allow the buyer to make a justified offer of 1 to 20% below the asking price, therefore a survey will typically save the buyer thousands of euros and occasionally help them to steer clear of a real liability, or even allow them to move quickly and snap up a bargain. Likewise in dispute situations expert diagnosis and evidence can assist in reaching settlement.
Is a survey a guarantee of condition?

A survey is not a guarantee, but a present time assessment of a building, which can be likened to a personal medical or car MOT inspection. Just as a medical or MOT is obviously not a guarantee that illness or breakdowns won’t occur in the future, the survey is not a guarantee of future property condition and clients are required to sign a legal disclaimer to this effect. (Professional indemnity insurance is held  and underwritten via Lloyds of London).


Will my estate agent be happy with a survey?

Most professional estate agents will welcome your request for a survey, though you may find the fact that the service is available locally comes as a surprise to them. A few agents use independent surveyors as part of the whole purchase process, much like in the UK. Normally, in the unlikely event that the survey causes the buyer to seek another property, the same agent will be able to demonstrate alternative properties and therefore a good agent will rarely have a problem with a surveyor giving a property a full inspection (normally 3hrs on site), however in the rare event that an agent actively discourages you from carrying out a survey you should exercise special caution, as they may be worried that you will be made aware of significant defects already known to them. Whilst a few agents and developers wish that surveyors did not exist, most understand that the surveyor has to act entirely in the interests of the prospective buyer and therefore that the survey may occasionally deter them from a purchase.


The independent assessment is designed to give the client a completely unbiased third party opinion, paid for directly by the client and without any financial links  to any agencies. The Surveyor’s remuneration is therefore unaffected, whether or not the buyer decides to progress with the purchase in question. The surveyor will act solely in the interests of the client at all times.


How do I arrange a structural survey?

Where client time permits enquiries can be made by e-mail to  , as however many buying decisions may be made at short notice, please feel free to call (0034) 962807247 or mobile (0034) 653733066 (any day including weekends between 8.30am and 10.30pm) and we will do what we can to fit in with your timescale and requirements. Most survey reports will be e-mailed to the client within 4 days of access to the property (following receipt of payment), key points can be discussed by telephone prior to completion of the report, where the client needs to make a quick decision.


Wherever possible, please try to arrange your survey prior to paying any deposits or actually completing on a purchase as the survey may well reveal unforeseen defects that might affect your offer price or purchase decision. You should ensure that your Lawyer includes 'subject to survey' when drafting contracts for any deposit payments.

Always use a reputable independent lawyer when purchasing property in Mallorca (Majorca) and Spain.  Should you require legal assistance we are happy to recommend Martin Hayes of Poveda Hayes . The practice has operated for 50 years in Spain. Mr Hayes is also Honorary Consul to the United Kingdom. E: M: 0034 699843120


We can also recommend reputable third party property related services:-

building surveys mallorca
- Tax efficient purchasing options and advice (see below)
- Trusted currency exchange facilities with market beating rates** 
- Valuation service for UK court actions**
- Specialist trades recommendations for structural repairs. 
Protect your heirs with Wincham's tax efficient purchasing plans - (click to visit Wincham's website) 
Back to main home page - Surveyors Mallorca
When purchasing a property in Spain Mallorca (Majorca), Menorca or Ibiza it is highly recommended that independent professionals are consulted for the purposes of legal conveyancing and structural survey services. As respected building surveyors for Mallorca and Spain we pride ourselves in helping our clients to make informed property investment decisions.
All advice is provided in strictest confidence.
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Advantage Building Surveys . Mark Paddon BSc Hons Building Surveying. MCIOB. FAS.CAAT.

Chartered Institute of Building, Faculty of Architecture & Surveying Member No: 1470272. . Member of the Colegio Oficial de Aparejadores, Arquitectos Técnicos e Ingenieros de Edificación de Valencia No: 5949

Professional Indemnity Insurance underwritten by Lloyds of London. 
                                                           mallorca CIOB    
Contact: - T: 0034 962807247 M: 0034 653733066 E: