The main purpose of a building inspection is to get an idea of the overall condition of a building structure and surrounding property.
You would think to get a building inspection in the following scenarios:
A pre-purchase building and pest inspection will reveal any issues with the property before you buy, so you won’t be blindsided by expensive defects discovered after you’ve signed on the dotted line.
A pre-sale building and pest inspection will identify and allow you to fix any issues before they deter prospective buyers.
A construction handover inspection ensures your new property or renovation meets the top standards of a licensed builder, this report will identify any defects and/or incomplete finishes, so you can be certain your builder has completed the work properly before you pay the bill and finalise the contract.
Now that we’ve established when you might get a building inspection done and why, lets cover what is usually covered in a report!
A building inspection usually covers obvious major defects to the building included but not limited to, significant and extensive cracking to the building elements, footing or foundation settlement, corrosion and decay issues, water escape from wet areas and any resultant damage.
Site drainage is also commented on, with recommendations or further inspections by a trade specialist. Most drainage improvements can be implemented after the purchase of the property, however, awareness is important for future costings.
Inspection of the interior covers serviceability of windows and doors, taps and light switches, cracking of wall or ceiling linings, condition of flooring etc. An inspection of the roof cavity with comments on insulation, sarking, ventilation, any significant defects to the roof frame and termite damage.
An inspection of the sub-floor is also done with comments on the condition of the piers, drainage, ventilation, current or previous water escape and termite damage. The roof is also inspected (dependant on access imitations), with comments made on the condition of the tiles/roof sheets, flashings, gutters etc.
Keep in mind, your building report will compare the property to similar designed properties of similar age, where the majority of the minor defects are generally typical, with no repairs or improvements required.
If buying a house it’s crucial that these defects are identified before the exchange of contracts for any price negotiations or pulling out of the purchase altogether. If selling you don’t want to deter genuine buyers particularly if the remediation work could be inexpensive and actually add value to the property.