Purchasing a Listed Building

Listed Building Surveyor

If you are one of the fortunate few who get the opportunity to purchase a listed building, it could be best described as obtaining a piece of history.

All buildings still in their original condition and built before 1700 are classed as listed.  This also applies to most buildings constructed between 1700 and 1840. Post-1840 buildings can be listed, but have to meet a strict criteria. There are very few listed buildings under 30 years old.

The Listing process does not necessarily freeze a building in time and is also not a preservation order that will prevent change to a listed building. The purpose it serves is to identify and protect buildings of exceptional architectural or historical special interest. Whilst changes can be made, additional consents are needed in order to safeguard a listed buildings future.

You will find there are three categories or grades when listing a building.

  • Grade II makes up 92% of all listed buildings.
  • 5.5% are Grade II* listed (of more importance)
  • 2.5% are Grade I listed, (sometimes of international importance).

Before you consider  the purchase of a listed building it is very important to ensure you have had it thoroughly inspected by a Listed Building Surveyor who is conversant with historic buildings. You will need to understand how the building has been constructed, how it has been adapted and of course its state of repair.

Improving and repairing listed buildings is more costly than modern properties, requiring specialist skills and materials.

You must ensure that any changes made to a listed building are completed with Listed Building Consent; it is the responsibility of the owner to ensure compliance, even if unauthorised changes have been made by the previous owner or occupier.


British Listed Building Surveyors have years of experience surveying listed buildings and recommend using their chartered surveyors to provide you with the right advice, before you commit to the purchase.

Call today on 0800 298 5424 (Freephone)

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