Why should I get a Building & Pest Inspection?

Your Solicitor or Conveyancer will usually recommend that you carry out a Building & Pest Inspection as part of the property purchasing process. A Pest & Building inspection is considered to be a minimum level of due diligence when buying or selling a property. It is the perfect way to further investigate the condition of your existing property, or to investigate a significant defect that appears to be standalone.

If the property is going to Auction, this should be done well in advance. If the property is private treaty then most people get an inspection done during their cooling off period.

The worst building issues are usually hidden.People selling property go to great lengths (and in some cases expense), to cover up or hide problems. Buildings have a natural tendency to deteriorate over time, this happens faster than you may think. Getting good trades people can be hard and all builders struggle with quality control.

Some properties are well built and well maintained, while others are so bad they are uninhabitable. Old buildings can be in good condition and new buildings can have major defects from day one.

How will you know for sure, if you don’t engage a professional to investigate the property for you.

All buildings have defects, however not all properties are equal.

Major structural concerns, installation defects, workmanship issues, leaking roofs / showers / balconies, termites and conditions conducive to termite attack, repairs and maintenance issues, building services, site drainage issues, external structures and outbuildings, retaining walls, strata concerns, building advice, cost estimates, free asbestos appraisals, free onsite consultations, full telephone support  – we do it all – right across Sydney metro and greater Sydney.

Our inspectors are seasoned pros and can spot major issues a mile away. They have seen it all.

If you consider that hidden site drainage problems or a major structural concern could easily cost you $30K-$50K to rectify. Compared with the cost of a Building & Pest Inspection, It will be the best $500 you ever spend!!

We know this because our customers tell us.

Contact  us or BOOK ONLINE. 

 

How much does it cost for a Building & Pest Inspection in Sydney?

The price in 2019 for a Combined Building & Pest Inspection is normally between $400-$500 inc GST for a standard property in Sydney.

Prices for a Thermal Building & Pest Inspection (a standard Combined Building & Pest Inspection including Thermal Camera) start from $449 inc GST.

At Sydney Pre-Purchase Property Inspections – our prices start at $399 inc GST for a standard property. Large, complex or multiple occupancy dwellings please call for a quote.

Despite our competitive rates, we offer the best building consultants in Sydney. No Jargon, no confusion, no problems. Please visit our pricing page at http://www.sydneyprepurchase.com.au/pricing/

The price for home and property inspection in NSW has come down significantly over the last 5-10 years.

Traditionally the cost of a combined inspection and report was around $600. Due to a number of factors such as changing market conditions, and increased competition in the sector, prices have dropped. This might seem like a good thing for the industry, as long as quality or experience is not compromised. 

New housing developments are popping up across Sydney

New housing developments are popping up across Sydney

Over the last 5 years there has been a proliferation of ‘franchise models’ moving into the property inspection sector in Sydney. What’s interesting about these businesses is that they are not based in NSW. Our concern is that the business of building consultancy is not suitable for franchising. It is a very different type of service to mowing lawns. Being a good building consultant is not just about being able to find building defects. A good building inspector is a great communicator that can write complex technical reports and is able to explain issues in simple terms. 

Our fees are nothing compared to the savings you can make based on the findings of the report.

Our Building Inspection can include any particular concerns you may have.

Call our team on 1300 556 156 or BOOK ONLINE HERE.

The 2019 Australian Federal Election & Implications for Property Ownership & Investment – Proposed Changes to Negative Gearing and Capital Gains Tax

With seven Prime Ministers in ten years, it is easy to understand why some voters have stopped listening.
Over this period of political inconsistency, it has been difficult to differentiate between political leaders, what they stand for and where the traditional party lines lay.

However, this 2019 federal election is different. It has become a classic contest between traditional Liberal and Labor values, between economic liberalism and social democracy.

The Australian Labor Party is planning to make some brave and far reaching changes to Australian Taxation, many of which are aimed directly at property as vehicle for investment. This is intended to increase government revenue, which can the be used to fund Labor’s social policies and help to ‘redistribute’ wealth in Australia.

If Labor wins the election, they are promising to:

  • Clamp down on the practice of negative gearing with investment properties. Negative gearing will only be possible with newly constructed properties after 1st January 2020. (existing investments will remain unchanged).
  • Capital gains tax concessions will be reduced by half. Under existing Liberal rules the capital gains concession applies to 50% of the capital gain after 12 months. Under Labor it will be reduced to 25%.
  • Labor will reverse the Coalition’s proposed income tax cuts which are planned to be rolled out over the next four years.
  • Labor is planing to reduce tax concessions for Superannuation funds. Self managed super funds can be used as vehicles for property investment.
  • Trust funds will also be targeted for increased taxation.
  • Support for low and middle income earners will be increased.
  • A 2% levy on incomes over $180,000 will be re-introduced by Labor.
  • Franking credits will be stopped for shareholders that do not pay tax.
  • While the Coalition is planning to reduce taxes and simplify the tax system, the Labor Party are proposing to reduce tax concessions and close tax loopholes.

Whatever your political inclinations, it is interesting to keep in mind that these proposed changes may have a negative impact on property values in Australia. This is off the back of 18 months of negative growth. Over 2018, Sydney’s property values have recorded their steepest decline in 20 years, falling 10% across the board. Some pockets of the Sydney housing market have recorded much higher falls in value, especially in the new unit market. At Sydney PrePurchase Property Inspections, we have heard anecdotes from clients that tell a much more worrying picture. One client purchased an investment unit of the plan in western Sydney 2 years ago based on a valuation $650K. Now that the unit is complete, the final bank valuation came in at $410K. This equates to a 37% loss in value over 2 years. In addition to falling property prices, the banking Royal Commission has significantly ‘tightened’ lending practices in Australia. Banks are lending significantly less on the same property, compared with 2 years ago. Some say this difference is as much as 20%. This is a ‘double whammy’ of falling values and reduced access to money. The wealth of most Australians is asset based, and for the average Australian this asset is property. When you take into account the increasing cost of living and wage stagnation, it will be interesting to see how Australia responds to these complex issues on Saturday 18th May 2019.

Whatever the results on Saturday, use professionals when carrying out a Building & Pest Inspection for your Sydney property.

First home buyers tax concessions and changes in the 2017 state and federal budgets

First Home Buyer Concessions, Investor Tax Changes & the 2017 Budgets

Sydney’s median house price has just hit a record $1.15m in the March 2017 quarter. Property prices have been spiraling out of control in Sydney over the last 5-6 years. In the last 5 years the median house price in Sydney has nearly doubled in value and is now $300,000 more than a similar property in Melbourne.

The NSW premier, Gladys Berejiklian has said that solving the housing affordability crisis will be her government’s biggest challenge.

 

The growth in property value in conjunction with banks tightening their lending practices since the global financial crisis has made purchasing a first property very difficult or impossible for most first home buyers.

Both the Federal and State Governments have made recent policy changes in an attempt to address some of these issues.

  • In the new financial year – No stamp duty payable in NSW on houses up to $650,000 in value for first home buyers. (previously the limit was $550,000).
  • Discounts on stamp duty up to $800,000 for first home buyers.
  • Abolition of stamp duty charge on lenders mortgage insurance.
  • First home buyer savings are estimated to be nearly $25,000.
  • First home buyers will be able to use voluntary superannuation contributions to reduce tax and build savings for a home deposit.
  • Foreign investor surcharge to increase from 4% to 8% on stamp duty and from 0.27% to 2% on land tax.
  • The federal government is considering a 50% cap on foreign ownership of property developments.
  • In NSW $3 billion dollars has been slated to assist boosting housing supply and accelerate delivery. The Berejiklian government believes that supply is the key to affordability.
  • These measures are coupled with a huge amount of medium and high density housing stock such as high rise units, townhouses and villas hitting the market over the next 1-2 years.

Conversely investors have been hit with tax tightening reforms in the 2017 budget.

  • From July 1st tax exemptions for travelling to investment properties will be scrapped.
  • Depreciation deductions for investment properties will be tightened.
  • Lending practices to investors has been tightened significantly in the last 6 months. Interest rates for investment loans have already been lifted above home owner rates by as much as .4%. Loan to value ratios have also been increased meaning an investor can borrow less relative to the relative to the value of the property.

Time will tell what affect these reforms will have on house affordability, and the housing market more generally.

The RBA has noted that the additional supply of apartments in the eastern states is expected to put downward pressure on prices and rental growth.

The changes to lending practices appears to have already had a slight dampening effect on the market.

The stamp duty discounts for first home buyers certainly are a big incentive for people to get their foot into the market. However those who are waiting for a drop in prices might be disappointed.

Whilst growth is expected to slow over the next year or two, Sydney and Melbourne are predicted to continue to grow in value. Experts suggest there are no immediate signs of an interest rate hike and so is seems likely property values will continue to climb in the major cities of Sydney and Melbourne.

Why get a Building & Pest Inspection?

Don’t be fooled by new developments, property styling or recent renovations.

Not all properties are equal and some of the worst defects can be hard to see, or easy to conceal.

A pre-purchase Building and Timber Pest Inspection is vital to help you understand what problems a building may have before you buy it. Imagine moving into your new home and discovering these scenarios:

  • The upstairs shower leaks into the rooms below.
  • The timber deck is decayed and in danger of collapse.
  • The timber floors have been infested with termites and require complete replacement.
  • The building is structurally inadequate and requires underpinning.

These problems, and hundreds of others are very common in homes of all ages and can cost tens of thousands to fix.

A Building report will empower your negotiations and help eliminate risk.

One in five houses in Sydney have some form of termite damage.

Sydney is rated by the CSIRO as the second highest risk category for Termite attack to homes.

Timber, brick or steel-framed houses are all at risk of Termite attack.

 

Common Major Defects that we find during Sydney Building and Pest Inspections:

  • Structural cracks
  • Damp problems
  • Leaking Showers
  • Termite infestation (1 in 5 houses in Sydney has some form of termite damage)
  • Potential safety hazards such as collapsing balconies, unsafe staircases, illegal or unsafe handrails
  • Cracked tiles
  • Damaged Roof
  • Absence of Smoke detectors
  • Illegal structures
  • Fire hazards
  • Wood-rot
  • Defective guttering
  • Poor external surface drainage
  • Flooding and Damp related issues
  • Broken roof frames members
  • Bouncy or Sagging floors
  • Sticking doors
  • Rotten window frames
  • Leaning retaining walls
  • Tree root damage
  • Rotten or termite infested Boundary fences
  • Water Hammer
  • Toilet not flushing
  • Damaged Kitchen cupboards
  • Borer and wood decay

 

What is Asbestos? Where is it likely to be found within a house?

There are basically two types of asbestos materials used in construction.

Friable and bonded.

Friable asbestos is the most dangerous and is usually found in thermal insulation and pipe lagging (type of insulation) and is not commonly found in domestic buildings.

Bonded asbestos material however, can be  found in most domestic buildings constructed before the mid 1980’s.

Generally speaking, all buildings built before the mid 1980’s will contain asbestos somewhere within.

The most common building material that contains bonded asbestos is fibro sheeting which gained popularity during the post-war construction boom because of its cheap and durable nature.

Fibro sheeting was used for external wall cladding, external eaves linings, internal wall linings such as wet areas including laundries and kitchens, ceiling linings, garage internal linings.

Other parts of houses which can contain asbestos include shower recess wall linings, roof tile bedding, roof sheeting and roof capping, lino flooring, vinyl flooring, the backing boards to electrical meter boxes, electrical fuses, slip joints and formwork to infill slabs (concrete formwork which remains in place), fences, carpet underlay, piping and insulation.

Older fibro houses that have been renovated often contain building debris which includes asbestos materials scattered throughout the roofspace and subfloor. Our inspectors will alert you to this if found during a building and pest inspection.

 

 

 

 

 

 

To arrange a Building and Pest Inspection contact us on 1300 556 156.

Drainage problems

Why does that downstairs room always smell damp and what’s causing those stains on the walls?

Split level buildings and homes with basement rooms or lower storey additions often suffer from ongoing damp related problems due to poor building design and a lack of site drainage.

The site topography (slope of the site) can direct stormwater toward the building and into the subfloor areas. Once in the subfloor this water often has no way of escaping and will cause a range of problems and damp issues.

Basement and lower storey rooms often do not have enough separation between the building elements and the damp subfloor soil. This moisture seeps into the walls and floors slowly over a period of time, causing damage to internal finishes.

The key to any remedy involves stopping water from getting to the building or room in question and giving this area a chance to dry out.

Good external surface drainage (strip drains) are essential to collect stormwater and direct away from the building into the stormwater system.

Subfloor drainage around the room is often required to collect water that finds its way into the subfloor and direct it out of the building.

External ground levels must be lower than internal floor levels by at least 75mm and external paths must slope away from the building.

Soil in the subfloor must not be heaped up against internal walls and must be lower than the lowest floor level in the basement room or other habitable area.

Sometimes more complex remedies include subsoil drainage pits dug deep around the building to collect ground water before it enters the subfloor.

Good damp proof building practice is essential in the rooms / building to prevent the absorption of water. Brickwork must have a damp proof course (DPC). Timbers must be separated from damp masonry and concrete with DPC and concrete slabs must have adequate plastic vapour barrier installed at the time of construction. Double brick and brick veneer construction must have clear cavities to prevent moisture bridging.

To aid the drying out process improved subfloor ventilation is required. Often an active fan system with with negative and positive air flow (one fan pushing air in and one fan pulling air out) can be highly effective.

This house on the North Shore in the image below had a steep backyard sloping toward the back of the house. The home was built with no provision for site drainage. Large pools of water were found in the subfloor up to 100ml deep. A series of damp related problems were found inside the house and the chipboard timber floor would require complete replacement costing in excess of $30,000.

 

These problems are very expensive to rectify once a building has been constructed and landscaped. We recommend a building inspection be carried out on any prospective house purchase.

 

Home Warranty Inspection Agreement

For information on Owner Builder Inspections or Home Warranty Inspections, enquire today with our office on 1300 556 156.

Home Owners (Owner Builder) Warranty Inspection Agreement

To AS 4349.0-2007 Inspection of Buildings – General Requirements

And

Section 95 of the NSW Home Building Act 1989

Important: This is NOT a Pre Purchase Building Inspection Agreement

TYPE OF PROPOSED INSPECTION ORDERED BY YOU:

Inspection & Report: The inspection will be of the Building Elements as outlined in AS4349.0-2007 and Appendix C of AS4349.1-2007 except for Strata title properties where the inspection will be according to AS4349.0-2007 and Appendix B of AS4349.1-2007.

A copy of the appropriate Standard with Appendices may be obtained from RAPID Solutions at Your cost by phoning (02) 4954 3655 or by email to support@rapidsolutions.com.au or from Standards Australia.

We will carry out the inspection and report ordered by you in accordance with this agreement and you agree to pay for the inspection on or before delivery of the report.

In ordering the inspection, you agree that the inspection will be carried out in accordance with the following clauses, which define the scope and limitations of the inspection and the report.

SCOPE OF THE INSPECTION & THE REPORT 

The Inspection will be carried out in accordance with AS4349.0-2007. The purpose of the inspection is to identify major defects, the incidence of minor defects and safety hazards associated with the works defined by the approved plans and specifications. The inspection and reporting is limited to Appendix C of AS4349.1-2007.

  1. 1.      The report does not include an estimate of the cost for rectification of the Defects. The overall condition of this building has been compared to similarly constructed and reasonably maintained buildings of approximately the same age.   Areas for Inspection shall cover all safe and accessible areas.
  2. 2.      The inspection shall comprise a visual assessment of the items listed in Appendix C to AS4349.1-2007 for the structures within 30 metres of the building and within the site boundaries including fences.
  3. 3.      Subject to safe and reasonable access (See  Definitions below) the Inspection will normally report on the condition of each of the following areas: –
  • The interior
  • The roof void
  • The exterior
  • The subfloor
  • The roof exterior
  1. 4.      The inspector will report individually on Major Defects and Safety Hazardsevident and visible on the date and time of the inspection. The report will also provide a general assessment of the property and collectively comment on Minor Defects which would form a normal part of property maintenance.
  2. 5.      Where a Major Defect has been identified, the inspector will give an opinion as to why it is a Major defect and specify its location.

LIMITATIONS

  1. 6.      The Inspector will conduct a non–invasive visual inspection which will be limited to those accessible areas and sections of the property to which Safe and Reasonable Access (see Definitions below) is both available and permitted on the date and time of the inspection. Areas where reasonable entry is denied to the inspector, or where safe and reasonable access is not available, are excluded from and do not form part of, the inspection. Those areas may be the subject of an additional inspection upon request following the provision or reasonable entry and access.
  2. 7.      The Inspection WILL NOT involve any invasive inspection including cutting, breaking apart, dismantling, removing or moving objects including, but not limited to, roofing, wall and ceiling sheeting, ducting, foliage, mouldings, debris, roof insulation, sarking, sisalation, floor or wall coverings, sidings, fixtures, floors, pavers, furnishings, appliances or personal possessions.
  3. 8.      The Inspection and Report compares the inspected building with a building constructed to the generally accepted practice at the time and which has been maintained, so there has been no significant loss of strength and permanence.
  4. 9.      The Inspection excludes the inside of walls, between floors, inside skillion roofing, inside the eaves, behind stored goods in cupboards, and other areas that are concealed or obstructed. The inspector WILL NOT dig, gouge, force or perform any other invasive procedures.
  5. 10.    The Report is not a certificate of compliance that the property complies with the requirements of any Act, regulation, ordinance, local law or by-law, or as a warranty or an insurance policy against problems developing with the building in the future.
  6. 11.    The Inspection WILL NOT look for or report on Timber Pest Activity. You should have an inspection carried out in accordance with AS 4349.3-2010 Timber Pest Inspections, by a fully qualified, licensed and insured Timber Pest Inspector.
  7. 12.    If Timber Pest Damage is found then it will be reported. The inspector will only report on the damage which is visible.
  8. 13.    ASBESTOS:No inspection for asbestos will be carried out at the property and no report on the presence or absence of asbestos will be provided. If during the course of the Inspection asbestos or materials containing asbestos happened to be noticed then this may be noted in the general remarks section of the report. If asbestos is noted as present within the property then you agree to seek advice from a qualified asbestos removal expert as to the amount and importance of the asbestos present and the cost sealing or of removal.
  9. 14.    Mould (Mildew) and Non-Wood Decay Fungi Disclaimer: No inspection or report will be made for Mould (Mildew) and non-wood decay fungi.
  10. 15.    Estimating Disclaimer: Any estimates provided in the Report are merely opinions of possible costs that could be encountered, based on the knowledge and experience of the inspector, and are not estimates in the sense of being a calculation of the likely costs to be incurred. The estimates are NOT a guarantee or quotation for work to be carried out. The inspector accepts no liability for any estimates provided throughout this report where they occur you agree to obtain and rely on independent quotations for the same work.
  11. 16.    If the property to be inspected is occupied then You must be aware that furnishings or household items may be concealing evidence of problems, which may only be revealed when the items are moved or removed.
  12. 17.    The Inspection Will not cover or report the items listed in Appendix D to AS4349.1-2007.
    1. 18.    The Inspection and Report WILL NOT report on any defects which may not be apparent due to prevailing weather conditions at the time of the inspection. Such defects may only become apparent in differing weather conditions.
    2. 19.    You agree that We cannot accept any liability for Our failure to report a defect that was concealed by the owner of the building being inspected and You agree to indemnify Us for any failure to find such concealed defects.
    3. 20.    Where Our report recommends another type of inspection including an invasive inspection and report then You should have such an inspection carried out If You fail to follow Our recommendations then You agree and accept that You may suffer a financial loss and indemnify Us against all losses that You incur resulting from Your failure to act on Our advice.
    4. 21.    The Report is prepared and presented, unless stated otherwise, under the assumption that the existing use of the building will continue as a Residential Property.

GENERALLY

COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE

  1. 22.     In the event of any dispute or claim arising out of, or relating to the Inspection or the Report, You must notify Us as soon as possible of the dispute or claim by email, fax or mail. You must allow Us (which includes persons nominated by Us) to visit the property (which visit must occur within twenty eight (28) days of your notification to Us) and give Us full access in order that We may fully investigate the complaint. You will be provided with a written response to your dispute or claim within twenty eight (28) days of the date of the inspection.

If You are not satisfied with our response You must within twenty one (21) days of Your receipt of Our written response refer the matter to a Mediator nominated by Us from the Institute of Arbitrators and Mediators of Australia. The cost of the Mediator will be borne equally by both parties or as agreed as part of the mediated settlement.

Should the dispute or claim not be resolved by mediation then the dispute or claim will proceed to arbitration. The Institute of Arbitrators and Mediators of Australia will appoint an Arbitrator who will hear and resolve the dispute. The arbitration, subject to any directions of Arbitrator, will proceed in the following manner:

(a)  The parties must submit all written submissions and evidence to the Arbitrator within twenty one (21) days of the appointment of the Arbitrator; and

(b)  The arbitration will be held within twenty one (21) days of the Arbitrator receiving the written submissions.

The Arbitrator will make a decision determining the dispute or claim within twenty one (21) of the final day of the arbitration. The Arbitrator may, as part of his determination, determine what costs, if any, each of the parties are to pay and the time by which the parties must be paid any settlement or costs.

The decision of the Arbitrator is final and binding on both parties. Should the Arbitrator order either party to pay any settlement amount or costs to the other party but not specify a time for payment then such payment shall be made within twenty one (21) days of the order.

In the event You do not comply with the above Complaints Procedure and commence litigation against Us then You agree to fully indemnify Us against any awards, costs, legal fees and expenses incurred by Us in having your litigation set aside or adjourned to permit the foregoing Complaints Procedure to complete.

 

Client Initials

 

 

  1. 23.   EXTENT OF RELIANCE ON THE REPORT:

This inspection report is prepared and provided for, and at the request of, the owner/builder of the inspected property.

The inspection that leads to the preparation of the report is carried out solely for the purposes of obtaining Home Owners Warranty Insurance and often this is part of the preparation of a contract of sale. By law, the report must deal with certain prescribed matters and a copy of the report must be inserted into any contract of sale with a copy of the Home Owners Warranty Insurance Certificate.

 

In the inspection and preparation of the report the inspector is solely assessing the defect condition of the property with those prescribed matters, as are discoverable by visual inspection on the date of the inspection, to enable the inspected property to be subject of coverage by Home Owners Warranty Insurance and no more. It is not unusual for defects to become apparent years after construction is completed and the report is not in any way a representation or warranty that the property does not contain latent defects which may become visually apparent in the future.

 

To the extent allowed by law no responsibility will be accepted for the content of the

report after 30 days following the date of the inspection of the property.

 

The report is not a Pre-Purchase Property Inspection Report and it may not be

relied upon as such by anyone. Any party seeking to rely on such a report needs to commission their own Pre-Purchase Property Inspection Report.

 

To the extent allowed by law, no responsibility will be accepted should the report

be relied upon by any party who may use or rely on the whole or part of the content

of the report as a Pre-Purchase Property Inspection Report, or for any other

purpose other than the Home Owners Warranty Insurance purposes as set out

above.

 

  1. 24.   Prohibition on the Provision or Sale of the Report

The Report may not be sold or provided to any other Person without Our express written permission, unless the Client is authorised to do so by Legislation.  If We give our permission it may be subject to conditions such as payment of a further fee by the other Person and agreement from the other Person to comply with this clause.

However, We may sell the Report to any other Person although there is no obligation for Us to do so.

  1. 25.    Release

You release Us from any and all claims, actions, proceedings, judgments, damages, losses, interest, costs and expenses of whatever nature that the Person may have at any time hereafter arising from the unauthorised provision or sale of the Report by You to a Person without Our express written permission.

  1. 26.    Indemnity

You indemnify Us in respect of any and all liability, including all claims, actions, proceedings, judgments, damages, losses, interest, costs and expenses of any nature, which may be incurred by, brought, made or recovered against Us arising directly or indirectly from the unauthorised provision or sale of the Report by You to a Person without Our express written permission.

DEFINITIONS:

You should read and understand the following definitions of words used in this Agreement and the Report. This will help You understand what is involved in a property and building inspection, the difficulties faced by the inspector and the contents of the Report which We will provide You following the Inspection.

Acceptance Criteria: The Building shall be compared with a building which was constructed at approximately the same time, using practices which were generally accepted as normal for that time and that the property has received maintenance to ensure that the intended strength and serviceability of the building have not significantly deteriorated over time.

Access hole (cover) means a hole in the structure allowing safe entry to an area.

Accessible area is any area of the property and structures allowing the inspector safe and reasonable access within the scope of the inspection.

Building Element means a part of a building performing a particular function either singularly or in conjunction with other such parts.

Client means the person(s) or other legal entity for which the inspection is to be carried out. If ordered by the person(s)’s agent then it is agreed that the agent represents the person(s) and has the authority to act for and on their behalf. (See also “You/Your” below)

Defect means a variation or fault in material or a component or assembled element that deviates from its intended appearance or function.

Inspector means the company, partnership or individual named below that You have requested to carry out a Building Inspection and Report. (See also “Our/Us/We” below.)

Limitation means any factor that prevents full achievement of the purpose of the inspection.

Major defect means a defect of such significance that without correction would not avoid Safety Concerns, loss of the intended practical performance of the building element or an additional decline in the existing condition of the property inspected.

Minor defect means a defect which is not a Major Defect.

Person means any individual, company, partnership or association who is not a Client.

Property means the structures and boundaries up to thirty (30m) metres from the exterior walls of the main building but within the boundaries of the land on which the main building is erected.

Report means the document and any attachments issued to You by Us following Our inspection of the property.

Structural Inspection means the inspection shall comprise visual assessment of accessible areas of the property to identify major defects to the building structure and to form an opinion regarding the general condition of the structure of the property. The Report will not include those items noted in Clause A3 of AS 4349.1-2007 e.g. Condition of roof coverings, partition walls, cabinetry, doors, trims, fencing, minor structures, ceiling linings, windows, non-structural & serviceability damp issues, rising damp, condensation etc.

Safe and Reasonable Access does not include the use of destructive or invasive inspection methods or moving furniture or stored goods.

The Standard AS4349.1-2007 provides information concerning safe and reasonable access:

Only areas where reasonable and safe access was available were inspected. Access will not be available where there are safety concerns, or obstructions, or the space available is less than the following:

ROOF VOID – the dimensions of the access hole must be at least 500mm x 400mm, and, reachable by a 3.6M ladder, and, there is at least 600mm x 600mm of space to crawl;

ROOF EXTERIOR – must be accessible by a 3.6M ladderplaced at ground level.

Reasonable access does not include the use of destructive or invasive inspection methods. Nor does reasonable access include cutting or making access traps, or moving heavy furniture or stored goods.

SAFE ACCESS – Is at the inspector’s discretion and will take into account conditions existing on the property at the time of the inspection. 

Our/Us/We means the company, partnership or individual named below that You have requested to carry out the property inspection and report.

You/Your means the party identified on the face page of this agreement as the Client, and where more than one party all such parties jointly and severally, together with any agent of that party.

You agree that in signing this agreement You have read and understand the contents of this agreement and that the inspection will be carried out in accordance with this document. You agree to pay for the inspection on delivery of the report.

If You fail to sign and return a copy of this agreement to Us and do not cancel the requested inspection then You agree that You have read and understand the contents of this agreement and that We will carry out the inspection on the basis of this agreement and that We can rely on this agreement.

Note: Additional inspection requirements requested by You may incur additional expense in regard to the cost of the inspection.

 

 

 

Terms used to describe types of defects

DAMAGE: The building material or item has deteriorated or is not fit for it’s designed purpose.

DISTORTION, WARPING, TWISTING: The item has moved out of shape or has moved from it’s intended position and no longer fulfills it’s intended purpose.

WATER PENETRATION, DAMPNESS: Moisture has gained access to parts of the building not designed to withstand moisture.

MATERIAL DETERIORATION: The item is subject to one or more of the following defects; rusting, rotting, corrosion, decay, and is no longer performing its intended purpose as designed.

OPERATIONAL DEFECT: The item or part does not function as intended.

INSTALLATION: The installation of an item is unacceptable, has failed or is absent.

Building and Pest Report Terminology and Definitions

Terms used in the Conclusion of our Building Reports – Overall Condition of the Property

LOW: The frequency or magnitude of major/minor defects is considered to be less than expected for a wellmaintained building of similar type and age.

TYPICAL: The frequency or magnitude of major/minor defects is considered to be typical (as expected) for a well-maintained building of similar type and age.

HIGH: The frequency or magnitude of major/minor defects is considered to be higher than expected for a wellmaintained building of similar type and age.

BELOW AVERAGE: The opinion regarding the general condition of the building when compared to a building of a similar type and age is lower than expected. A high number of significant defects are present. The property has been poorly maintained and may require significant rectification work.

AVERAGE: The opinion regarding the general condition of the building when compared to a building of a similar type and age is ‘as expected’. A typical number of significant defects are present. The property has been maintained to a reasonable level and requires rectification work in keeping with most other properties of this type.

ABOVE AVERAGE: The opinion regarding the general condition of the building when compared to a building of a similar type and age is higher than expected. A low number of significant defects are present. The property has been well maintained and may only require minimal rectification work, less than other properties of this type.

MINOR DEFECT: A defect other than a major defect – not individually reported on – Items such as minor blemishes, corrosion, cracking, weathering, general deterioration, unevenness, and physical damage to materials and finishes, such as de-silvering of mirrors.

MAJOR DEFECT: Is a Defect requiring building works to avoid unsafe conditions, loss of function or further worsening of the defect item.