Inspecting Building Inspectors

Inspecting Building Inspectors

It doesn’t matter whether you’re looking to sell your old home, or instead you’re looking for a new place to live, it’s important that you get an inspection of the building done as soon as possible. Inspecting the building is an absolute necessity in some cases, especially in houses that are at least several decades old. Why, though? Here’s what you need to know.

About Building Inspections

So when is the time for a building inspection? Traditionally, building inspections are done either before buying the new home, right after a new building has been recently finished, or right after renovation work has been completed on the property. The whole point of these inspections is to check for defects within the property, in each of the three scenarios mentioned earlier there are numerous reasons behind the necessity of each one, but their goals are all one and the same. They’re needed to protect the people who will be or are living there. This can be everything from a structural collapse, and in some rare cases, due to toxins previously trapped within old fibres that were then released during a renovation. More often than not though, building inspections are often simply a basic check list, a thorough overview of the building’s faults on what the owner should be concerned about.

What Do Building Inspections Cover?

A proper inspection will cover the following:

  • Drive-ways
  • Walls
  • Retaining walls
  • Outer Buildings
  • Gutters
  • Drain Pipes
  • Underfloor spaces
  • Underroof spaces
  • Attics
  • Electricity
  • Plumbing
  • Fitting and Fixtures

The Limitations

There are several limitations that you should be aware of when considering a building inspection. First, be aware that a standard building inspection will only report on the basic condition of the building, which means that there will be no cost estimates when it comes to repairing the problems. This is due to the different estimated values multiple contractors might give after they conduct their own review of the damage. Second, the report only covers serious issues, which means that any purely cosmetic defects the house might have will be completely ignored and listed as insignificant. Third, the inspection report does not give any details on whether any termites were found and in what number. As this is a specialised task and not one of a building inspector, it is best to leave such matters to an extermination specialist. While the report might make no mention, you might be able to get some more information from the Inspector himself if this is a major concern for you. Fourth, if you have any concerns regarding special situations, you may request a special purpose property report and/or a pest inspection, in addition to the initial building inspection. These extra reviews will help give you a definitive if it is what you’re looking for.

Who does the Inspections?

Any inspection should be carried out by a qualified inspector, with full licensing and insurance. They must also be experienced; they can only teach inspectors so much and like most field work professions, there is a learning curve with it. An experienced inspector will easily find potential hazards that may otherwise remain hidden.

When it comes to the report, it should be plain and easy to read with all the relevant details regarding the property that was inspected. When you first talk to an inspector, it’s best to ask for a quote, and an estimated time for them to complete and inspection and to get the following report to you. This is especially important for people who are looking to buy property, or if you have plans to renovate as slow processing could cause serious delay.

If you need a Building Consultant/Inspector then find your nearest inspector on our list.

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