Making Navigation of Building & Pest Inspections Easy

So, you’re keen on a property but you want to make sure it’s all what the agent says it is. A building and pest inspection is always recommended when you’re in the market for a new home. Think of it like buying a car – you wouldn’t think of purchasing it straight off the lot without taking it for a test drive, would you? 

The most common time to engage a building and pest inspector is during the contract agreement phase. For example, you sign the sales contract subject to a building and pest inspection. This allows you to back out of the contract should you not be satisfied with what the report reveals. 

A building and pest inspection can be done at the same time by the same qualified building inspector or by two separate specialists. Depending on the size of the property and how in-depth you want the report, the inspection can cost anywhere between $400-$1,600, and take 1-2 hours to complete. Always attain two to three quotes and ensure the inspectors are appropriately licensed with (preferably) local knowledge. The inspector will no doubt need a few days’ notice, but once he’s finished the inspection, he should be able to get a report to you within 24-48 hours. 

The inspector will check for any major structural defects and ensure that the building conforms to the building codes and standards of that particular state in Australia. This includes any sheds and patios. Critical checks in particular include any cracks in walls, signs of movement, missing balustrades, termite infestations, evidence of water ingress, dangerous materials, eg asbestos, and more.

Also, there is important new legislation regarding fire hazards and smoke alarms – your inspector should be able to enlighten you on these and how it affects the property, as it could affect your home insurance.  

You can expect a comprehensive report with photographs and perhaps some videos. Don’t hesitate to call the inspector if you need anything clarified, however they are unable to advise whether you should or shouldn’t purchase the property. 

If there is anything of major concern, it is recommended you talk to a relevant specialist and gain an understanding of the issue, and an idea of how much it might cost to rectify. You can then use this knowledge to either back out of the contract or negotiate a lower purchase price.  

Purchasing a property is an exciting but often stressful time. In fact, it’s worth noting that at the time of writing this blog, the property market is going through the roof (no pun intended), so building and pest inspectors are up to their eyeballs in bookings. These guys will no doubt appreciate a bit of extra patience and understanding during this hectic time. And when your time comes, these few tips will help navigate your way through the building and pest inspection with ease.