A building and pest inspection is an important thing to consider before purchasing a property. It helps determine existing and potential problems in the home or building and provides expert advice on the general condition of the property. Plus, with the inspection report in hand, you'll be able to negotiate the property price with cold, hard data. The pre-purchase building inspection is indeed a very useful tool for property buyers, but keep in mind that it also has its limitations.
Here are some things your inspection doesn't cover:
1. Everything that is hidden by walls and ceilings
Building inspectors won't be able to assess things on a property that aren't accessible during the inspection. It includes anything that is inside the walls and ceiling or covered with large furniture, such as electrical wiring, plumbing and building frames, gas and sewer installations.
2. Household appliances
Some properties are sold with built-in appliances such as oven, air conditioner, dishwasher, InSinkErator, ducted vacuum, and range hood. Remember that the inspection does not check whether these devices work or not. Be sure to inspect them yourself, especially if the devices are included in the property's sale price.
3. Other home accessories
The alarm system, CCTV cameras, fire and smoke detectors, intercom system, television reception, and lawn sprinkler systems are also not covered by your inspection. Like appliances, you need to personally check them so that you can negotiate a lower price if those items don't work.
4. The size and layout of the rooms.
Pre-purchase inspections also do not include verifying the location of existing furniture in bedrooms. The size and layout of the rooms are already indicated in the property's sale announcement. Therefore, before hiring home inspectors, you should have already decided whether or not to leave your old furniture.
5. Operation of chimneys, swimming pools and related equipment.
Fireplaces, pool filters, and saunas are some of the other things that are not covered by your inspection. These are not common property areas and inspection of these places will only be done if you request a special inspection.
6. Review of health hazards and general building safety problems.
The pre-purchase building inspection does not include a review of the establishment's compliance with building codes or regulations. It will not detect the presence of toxins or hazardous materials in or around the building. It also does not include inspecting the land where the property is located to determine if it is prone to landslides, erosion or flooding. It is advisable that you do your own research on these things before even entering into the property negotiation.
7. Other exclusions
After your building inspection, you will receive a detailed report with the results. It is important to note that your report will not include the following information:
- Minor defects or flaws, that is, things that do not require major repairs or urgent attention and rectification, taking into account the age and condition of the building.
- Settle or provide the costs of any repair work.
- Comment on the structural design or suitability of any construction element
- Detection of wood destroying insects like termites (therefore we recommend combining your building inspection with a pest and termite inspection as well to examine your property for damages and evidence of termite’s activity.).
So what do we check during a building inspection?
A standard building inspection will include detecting minor to a significant structural damage on the areas of the property that are easily accessible. These areas include:
- Interior and exterior walls
- Ceiling space
- Roof exterior
- Floor and basement space
- Garage, carport and shed
- Stairs / steps, fences and paths
- Non-structural retaining walls
If you are concerned about things that are not covered by your inspection, you can always request a special inspection. For any area that is outside the scope of your inspector, you should seek another consultant with a related area of expertise.If you are not sure what the inspection will cover or if you would like more information, please contact Buildcert's team of private construction experts.