Terms of Business

SCOPE OF INSTRUCTIONS

You have instructed us to undertake the professional work set out on the attached letter confirming our instructions. That letter also sets out the basis of our charges to which these terms and conditions of business will apply.

RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR WORK

The person responsible for ensuring that your instructions are carried out is the one named on the attached letter confirming instructions. He/she may be assisted by another qualified or graduate/assistant surveyor but if any queries arise on the work being undertaken they should initially be addressed to the person named on the letter confirming instructions.

PRIVACY, DATA AND GDPR

When you provide us with personal information such as completing an enquiry form, or to arrange the work you have instructed us to carry out, you have given implied consent to our collecting and using that information for the purpose of responding to you enquiry or performing the contract you have with us. If we would like your personal information for a secondary reason, like marketing, we will ask you directly for your consent. Withdrawing your consent: If, after you opt-in, you change your mind, you may withdraw your consent for us to contact you, or for the continued collection, use or disclosure of your information, at any time, by contacting enquiries@croftsurveyors.co.uk or writing to us at: 4 Northleigh House, Thorverton Road, Exeter, Devon, EX2 8HF.

We may disclose your personal information if we are required by law or if there is a lawful basis for us to do so; such as providing information to contractors, suppliers, solicitors or others when the work you have instructed requires this, or providing information to HMRC and legal advisors. To protect your personal information, our staff take reasonable precautions, and follow the GDPR guidance, to make sure it is not inappropriately lost, misused, accessed, disclosed, altered or destroyed. Electronic data is held on an EU based cloud server and password protected hardware. Hard copies are stored in a secure, locked facility. Croft Surveyors may retain your project data for up to 13 years to comply with HMRC Regulations and for Professional Indemnity purposes. If our company is acquired by or merged with another company, your information may be transferred to the new owner(s) but will be treated in the same way as we have described above and in our Terms of Business.

If any changes are proposed then we or the new owner(s) will contact you to obtain your consent to those changes. If you would like to: access, correct, amend or delete any personal information we have about you, register a complaint, or simply want more information contact our Data Controller David Vestey dv@croftsurveyors.co.uk or write to us at: 4 Northleigh House, Thorverton Road, Exeter, Devon, EX2 8HF.

USE OF IMAGES FOR PUBLICITY AND COPYRIGHT

We like to show prospective clients the type of work we do and the projects we have been involved with, and we like to use real projects on our website rather than stock images. For this purpose images of your property may be used by Croft Surveyors in their printed and online publicity, on social media, in newspapers and magazines and similar marketing media. Such images will be used anonymously with no reference to you or to the property address. If you do not wish us to use drawings or photographs of your property in this way please let us know. Information produced by Croft Surveyors remains the copyright of Croft Surveyors. Please contact us if you require information relating to your property to be released to a third party.

FEES

The company calculates its fees in one of three ways:

  1. A fixed fee quoted at the time of accepting instructions.
  2. A fee calculated at an hourly rate for the time spent on the work.
  3. A fee calculated as a percentage.

The attached confirmation of instructions letter sets out which fee basis will apply to your work. If no basis is stated then our time is charged at our current hourly rates. Any estimate of cost for hourly rate works will not be binding. Unless otherwise stated, we will also charge any out of pocket expenses incurred in carrying out the work (“disbursements”). This may include, but is not limited to, travelling, photocopying and statutory fees. VAT at the standard prevailing rate will be added to all fees and disbursements.

PAYMENTS TO THIRD PARTIES AND SUB-CONTRACTORS

During the course of carrying out your instructions it may be necessary for us to use third parties to assist us, or for us to incur significant costs such as the hire of a cherry-picker (MEWP) or drainage camera survey. Any sub-contract appointment will be charged as a disbursement, or alternatively we will ask the sub-contractor to agree terms direct with you. We do not accept liability for the work or advice given by sub-contractors we instruct on your behalf.

ABORTIVE WORK

Should our instructions be terminated before we have completed our work on a job where we have quoted a fixed fee or our fee is calculated as a percentage, we reserve the right to charge a fee on the basis of the time we have spent on the matter.

WORK OUTSIDE THE SCOPE OF OUR ORIGINAL INSTRUCTIONS

During the course of our work for you we may be called upon to provide advice and carry out work on matters outside the scope of our original instructions. In these circumstances we shall either agree our additional fee with you, or otherwise our fee will be charged on a time basis at our current hourly rates.

TERMINATION OF INSTRUCTIONS

We shall expect to continue to act for you until being advised otherwise by you in writing, or on completion of the instruction. In exceptional circumstances it may be necessary for us to cease acting for you, for example:

  1. A conflict of interest arises with instructions already received from another client.
  2. In fulfilling your instructions we or any member of the company would break the law.
  3. You do not pay any of our charges or disbursements within one month of receiving our invoice.
  4. We believe you are insolvent or unable to pay our charges.
  5. We consider our working relationship with you has deteriorated to the point at which we cannot continue to work constructively on your project.

THE RENDERING AND SETTLEMENT OF ACCOUNTS

In the case of fees, which are the subject of a fixed quotation or are calculated as a percentage fee, our accounts will generally be submitted to you when the work, or the stage of the work, we were instructed upon is completed. In the case of work charged on a time basis, we shall generally render an account when the work is concluded. In the case of any jobs taking longer than three months to complete whatever the fee basis agreed, we may submit interim bills at our discretion, normally on a monthly basis. Our accounts are due for settlement on presentation and no later than 14 days after the date of the invoice. We reserve the right to charge interest and penalties in accordance with the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998 – as amended, including compensation of up to £100 per invoice and interest at 8% above the Bank of England Business Base Rate.

LIABILITY

Our maximum total liability for any direct loss or damage whether caused by our negligence or breach of contract or otherwise is limited to the higher of £1 million or fifty times Croft Surveyors fee under this instruction. The Company’s Liability to the Client shall also be no greater than the sum which the Company ought reasonably to pay in respect of a claim, assessed on the basis that:

  1. All parties involved in the work had provided contractual undertakings on terms no less onerous than those in this Agreement;
  2. There are no limitations on liability, joint insurance or co-insurance provisions in the contracts between the Client and those other parties; and
  3. Those other parties had paid the Client the proportion of such claim which it was just and equitable for them to pay having regard to the extent of their responsibility.

Nothing in this contract confers or purports to confer on any third party any benefit or right to enforce any term of this contract pursuant to the Contract (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999.

COMPLAINTS HANDLING PROCEDURE

We operate a complaints handling procedure in accordance with RICS Requirements. A copy of the Complaints Handling Procedure can be obtained by request from any office of Croft Surveyors.