The Latest Technology in Surveying

By James Brook FRICS on and updated on

As in so many areas of our lives, technology significantly impacts the world of surveying, helping to deliver clearer, more detailed building surveys with less impact on the homeowner. So what technology is already being utilised by surveyors, and what could be next?

Surveying Methods of the Past

To see how much the art of surveying has changed in recent years, it’s worth looking at how surveys used to be carried out. The process of surveying a property used to be a very analogue experience, with pen, paper and tape measure being the key tools. ‘Technology’ might come in the form of a damp meter and a camera. In the past couple of decades, thermographic cameras have come onto the scene, enabling a wide range of building performance issues and defects to be identified, such as poorly installed insulation.

Recent years have seen the utilisation of mobile technology such as tablets to quickly record and share data and images and more reliance on cloud services to access that information on the move. While this has helped to improve survey quality and efficiency, this was only the start of the rapid adoption of technology that is helping the sector evolve at pace.

Surveying Technology Available Right Now

While compact cameras and tablets meant it was easier to take photos to illustrate points in a survey report, the improvements in camera technology haven’t stopped there. For example, at Novello, we regularly utilise pole cams to access those hard-to-reach areas and offer a more comprehensive survey than would otherwise be possible without significant disruption to the property owner.

Drones have also been a major plus for surveyors and are starting to be used more widely across the industry. By using drones for roof surveys, for example, we can provide high-quality information on the state of a roof and its associated elements quickly, safely and much more cost-effectively than traditional methods. Drones with 4K cameras offer incredible clarity of detail and make it easier to access narrow spaces and hard-to-reach areas that a standard roof survey could miss.

Novello surveyors are given drone training, so they are not only RICS-qualified but also Civil Aviation Authority certified and authorised drone operators.

Surveying Technology of the Future

Of course, innovation in the surveying sector isn’t going to stop there. As 5G becomes more widely deployed, you could end up watching your survey in real time, asking questions and requesting further investigations as issues are found.

You could even choose a virtual home survey, where surveyors utilise video, cloud and geolocation technology to connect with clients remotely for a super-quick service.

Image recognition software could also play a role in the future survey, offering the opportunity to analyse data and pinpoint potential defects.

The Novello Approach

What’s clear is that innovation in the sector hasn’t finished, and ways to improve the quality of service on offer will continue to be discovered. At Novello, we’ve always been aware of the potential for technology to deliver a better service and enhance the experience for customers. We understand that nothing frustrates clients more than an unresponsive, slow surveyor who issues a low-quality report with little follow-up advice and care. We believe appropriately used technology can help to overcome this. This could be as simple as delivering survey reports via email, so you receive them in a matter of days. Or offering a drone roof survey as part of our exclusive Private Client Surveying Service, so you have a thorough insight into the state of your roof before you commit to purchase, without the seller having to endure any disruption. Utilising technology allows us to capture data on site quickly and accurately, ensuring we provide you with a high-quality report promptly.

It also plays a crucial part in our unique Private Client Surveying service, a bespoke offering that ensures you have the advice and information you need to buy a house with confidence and without stress. From ensuring we keep you updated via communication and collaboration technology to high-definition drones and the most sophisticated tools to inspect every nook and cranny of a home, we will provide one of the most informative and detailed building surveys available as a high-quality personal service you can rely on.

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