Getting a professional pre-purchase building inspection is paramount to ensure your major investment in property is a sound one. It protects you from finding out about serious or costly structural issues after you’ve signed the deed.
Your building inspection will include many elements, including water damage and drainage, an assessment of plumbing and electrics and any level of structural wear and tear as well as other defects.
There are a few common things we regularly find during our pre-purchase building inspections in Freemantle. These include:
- Issues with your roof. In Australia's harsh climate, our rooves are almost guaranteed to deteriorate over time. If your prospective purchase has an inadequately framed roof, there's a chance it could sag under its own weight, so it's imperative to inspect and maintain it regularly, or it could cost you a bomb to replace. Leaky rooves can do considerable damage to rafters, interior/ exterior walls and decay that attracts termites to take up residence in your potential new home.
- Plumbing problems. Waste lines, plumbing pipes and fixtures are key things your building inspector will look at. Leaky pipes can lead to rising damp, mould and significant repair costs down the track. A lack of adequate waterproofing in older showers or unprofessional home renovations can cause water to penetrate behind tiles and grouting, slowly rotting walls and floors. Even slow leaks can mean rotted joists or sub-flooring = mega $$$$$
- Insufficient ventilation. This can cause a tide of woe if not corrected. We regularly see problems with under-house ventilation causing toxic mould issues and decay. Black mould is particularly worrisome – if found underneath the house or in the crawl space it can cause some severe health issues, including asthma. It might signal foundation cracks that are allowing water to seep through or major plumbing problems – both expensive to fix.
- Structural integrity complications. If your potential investment suffers from a lack of structural integrity due to poor construction of inadequate maintenance, you might be in for some serious problems. Most buildings have a settling period, causing hairline cracks but if there are significant cracks, it could indicate the stumps or slab has moved. Sometimes, incomplete construction techniques – however small (e.g. the deck doesn’t have gutters or eaves connected) – can cause a whole lot of grief for the buyer and should be repaired before the sale goes through.
- Pest infestations. Your inspector will keep an eye out for signs of pests – droppings, gnawing, nests and so forth. If you’re in a termite or borer-affected area, you’ll want to him/her to inspect whether conditions are ripe for timber pests – these can do a lot of damage before their work is visible to the casual eye.
- Broken or damaged chattels. We see a lot of problems arise about the fixtures and fittings included in your contract – including carpets, appliances, light fittings, etc. It's worth doing your inspection just before you sign the papers to ensure everything's where it should be and in good condition.
Getting a building inspection before you buy is vital for your peace of mind and your hip pocket. If you’re looking for an expert pre purchase building inspection in the Freemantle area, we’re here to help. Our inspectors can idenify any of the issues with your prospective purchase.