Full Guide to hiring a Professional Residential Structural Engineer

birds eye view of a residential structural engineering project

Hiring the right residential structural engineer is a crucial factor in any construction project, whether you’re a large construction company or a homeowner looking to make improvements to your property. Therefore it’s crucial that you select the right person for the job to ensure your project not only goes smoothly but is able to meet all of the requirements you need.


If you’re like many Britons, you’ve probably grown to dislike at least one thing about your property in 2020, in fact, 35% of homeowners have noticed details they’d like to make changes to, and on average, these homeowners are expected to spend £1,179 on improvements. Of these homeowners looking for improvements, 28% are craving for more space, which is exactly when the need for a highly skilled and qualified residential structural engineer will benefit you the most.


So, you’re looking to make improvements to your property and you’ve been told either by a construction company or friends and family that you’re likely to need a residential structural engineer. But you don’t know what they do.. so let’s break down their role for you in simple terms to see if it’s still a fit.

What is a residential structural engineer?

man performing a residential structural engineering survey

man performing a residential structural engineering survey

Breaking the definition into two, a structural engineer is an engineer that specialises in the structure of buildings. Their role is to determine durability, strength and feasibility of a structure (building) and are a key member in the construction process. Not only are they experts in determining the strength and structure of a project, but they are also able to provide specifications, calculations and often materials suitable for the design and development of a structure.

Residential Structural Engineers still provide all of the services a traditional structural engineer provides, however, they have more experience with residential projects (home’s extensions, renovations etc). Their knowledge of the residential industry means they are able to provide you with; inspections and surveys, extensions and conversion assessments, party wall disputes and plans and calculations.


We’ve also written a more comprehensive article about ‘what to look for in a residential structural engineer’  if you want to learn more about residential structural engineers.


Tips to Hiring a Residential Structural Engineer

You’re confident you need a residential structural engineer, great! It sounds like you’ve got an exciting project on your hands. Now the task of hiring the right professional.


In order to hire the best residential structural engineer for the job, we recommend you follow the below checklist, as we’re obviously biased, we’ve used HLN Architects & Engineering as an example for each point.


1. Reviews & Testimonials

A big selling point when it comes to trusting an online entity is to look into their reviews, these will tell you how experienced the company. At HLN, you’ll find great testimonials across various rating agencies for us, or you could take a look at our testimonials page.


2. Accreditations

It goes without saying that when you’re looking to make changes to your property, you want a highly-skilled professional with the correct industry qualifications. If you pay for someone to make chicken scratch calculations on the back of a napkin, you’ll likely end up with a structure that you then need a qualified residential structural engineer to rectify for you. The main qualifications for this industry, and the ones you need to look for, are the Institution of Structural Engineers (IStructE) or the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE). Are HLN accredited with these institutions? Yes. Scroll to the bottom of the page to see the rest of our qualifications.



If you’re looking for a residential structural engineer then you’re most likely looking to make some significant changes to your property. These decisions shouldn’t be made lightly, you should do your own due diligence in choosing the right company for the job. The level of expertise you pay for will show through in years to come when you find out if the structure is still safe. As a multi-disciplinary Architecture and Engineering company, HLN has worked on just about every project you can think of.

If you’ve got any questions about your project and believe we’re the experts right for the job (great decision), feel free to give us a call: 020 8099 6388 or an email: mail@hlngroup.co.uk, and one of our dedicated residential experts will happily discuss your project.

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