Letter: Briefly

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Contrary to Jeff Howell (Travel and Money, 11 May), many thousands of home buyers every year are glad they consulted a surveyor. A survey that reveals unexpected faults could affect a decision to buy, save substantial expenditure on repairs or help in negotiating a price reduction. Few would think of buying a second-hand car without having it checked by an expert; how much more important to take professional advice when making life's longest purchase.

Claire Makin, The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, London SW1