Tackling Health Risks at the Root: The Vital Role of Asbestos Surveys

Asbestos is a highly harmful substance found in many residential and commercial buildings up until the early 1980s. Unfortunately, it is still present in many structures built prior to the ban. Exposure to asbestos can lead to various serious health issues, including lung cancer, asbestosis, and mesothelioma. Therefore, it’s essential to have an asbestos survey conducted for your property, especially prior to any renovation or demolition work. In this comprehensive guide, we will discuss what asbestos survey are, their types, the process, and the potential costs.

What is an Asbestos Survey?

An asbestos survey is a thorough examination of a building to identify the presence, type, and condition of any asbestos-containing materials (ACMs). These surveys are conducted by professionals trained to handle the detection of hazardous substances like asbestos. Their primary goal is to identify areas of ACMs and rate their level of damage and risk.

Types of Asbestos Surveys

There are two main types of surveys: the management survey and the refurbishment/demolition survey. The management survey is a less intrusive survey, which is commonly carried out for general maintenance and management purposes. Meanwhile, the refurbishment/demolition survey is a detailed and intrusive examination designed to locate and identify all ACMs before any renovation or demolition work. It’s crucial to ensure the right type of survey is carried out for the intended purpose.

The Asbestos Surveying Process

The surveying process typically begins with a thorough visual inspection of the entire property, including any service risers and environments. Afterward, samples of suspected ACMs are taken for analysis in the laboratory. The results of the laboratory analysis are then used to identify the presence of asbestos.

Potential Costs of an Asbestos Survey

The cost of an asbestos survey can vary depending on different factors such as the building size, the type of survey required, the location of the property, and the complexity of the survey. Typically, a management survey can cost anywhere from $200 to $500, depending on the scale of the property. Meanwhile, a full-scale refurbishment/demolition survey will cost significantly more due to its complexity.

Asbestos Survey Reports

Upon completion of an asbestos survey, a comprehensive report detailing the survey findings is issued. The report provides advice on the necessary ACM management and highlights any issues with the identified ACMs. It is important to note that any ACMs rated as high risk or suffering significant damage need immediate attention to prevent any risks of asbestos fibers being released into the air.


The importance of carrying out an asbestos survey cannot be overstated, especially in structures built pre-1980. The surveying process helps to detect the presence of ACMs, making it easier to plan and undertake renovation or demolition work. A comprehensive asbestos survey report highlights the necessary ACM management procedures and shows any critical issues that need urgent attention. While the cost of the entire process can be significant, it’s a small price to pay when it comes to protecting the health of individuals, especially those tasked with working in such environments. We hope this guide has provided you with invaluable information on asbestos surveys.


Ivy Skye Marshall: Ivy, a social justice reporter, covers human rights issues, social movements, and stories of community resilience.