Being in the market for a new home means you’ll have to be meticulous in picking the right property. Luckily, you can get a helping hand in the form of professional pre-purchase building inspection. It should make the process of buying a suitable house easier on your end.
Why should you get extra help with inspecting properties, you ask? Although a house may seem perfect to the naked eye, it’s hard to tell when the builder or owner has covered up damaged elements to secure a quick sale. Intentional or otherwise, you want to be sure that you won’t end up purchasing a property with lots of unforeseen damage (and even hidden pests!).
Getting a property inspector on board your real estate plan isn’t as easy as making calls, however. They’re not all created equal, after all. On that note, here are considerations you should take into account as you search for a capable building inspector:
For starters, you should ask your prospect building inspector about their industry experience and how long they’ve been on the job. Ideally, you’ll want them to be a surveyor, architect, or a licensed builder or pest inspector. This way, you can check their registration details online; plus, they’re required by law to provide you their license number.
The reason it’d be great to have a licensed professional for a building inspector is that you can be certain that he or she understands the ins and outs of property construction. However, be careful about relying on the inspector recommended by a real estate agent. The fact is that the agent acts for the seller and it’s not really in their best interest to give you reasons NOT to buy the property he or she is showing you.
It is advised that if you are wanting a building and timber pest inspection then it should be performed by two inspectors not one. A registered builder and licensed pest inspector as you will be getting a far better inspection as both will be qualified in their own profession. Keep in mind there is no governing body overseeing pre purchase inspectors and obtaining a timber pest license can only take 2 weeks to complete.
As the inspector comes over to check a property you’re prospecting, you’d want to ask about what they’ll check. This should help you set realistic expectations of what they’ll assess and include in their building inspection report. For the most part, pre-purchase building inspections take around an hour to an hour & half to complete, though it depends on the size of the property and how complex are the issues hidden.
Ideally, the inspector has to look for details like leaks, moulds, roof issues, surface cracks, foundation concerns, and even signs of pests. If he or she thinks that the property will need further inspection, this recommendation will typically be included in the final report.
Building Inspection Report Content
Before you receive your building and pest inspection report, you’ll be more at ease when you know what is exactly included in it. Find out if it adheres to the Australian Standards for Pre-Purchase reporting and if it will include photos and details for everything the inspector finds. How long will it take for the report to be sent to you? There will be many things you might want to know about the final report and you also have to find out if they’ll elaborate them in person in case you have questions you need to ask. Asking for a sample report is a good idea then you will know to what extent the reporting goes too and thoroughness.
“You get what you pay for” is an adage that certainly applies when you’re looking for a competent property inspector. For sure, it’ll be tempting to hire anyone in the market offering the cheapest rates but always consider the quality and thoroughness in the service you get as it is a service you are purchasing. Chances are that a cheap inspector will cut corners and will offer little to no help in explaining the subsequent inspection report.
In the end, you’ll want to hire an inspector who can help in your decision-making process. If that won’t be offered by the inspector you’re currently talking to, move along.
Don’t take it lightly when a building inspector isn’t insured. At the very least, you’d want them to carry public liability and professional indemnity insurance for your own peace of mind. The former will cover any damage caused to a third-party person or property and the latter will cover for the advice they’re offering you.
Getting someone who is adequately insured will not only give you peace of mind, but it’s also proof that the inspector will do their best to protect their credibility and reputation.
Further Details to Help in Your Search for a Building Inspector
Being thorough and having a keen eye for details aren’t the only things you have to find out about your prospect building inspector. As the actual inspection commences, you’ll want to ask further questions and find out how thorough of a service you’ll get by hiring them.
On that note, here are a few more specific questions you might want to ask during your interview of a pre-purchase building inspector:
Will you allow a client to tag along during the building inspection?
In many cases, an inexperienced building inspector may be hesitant to allow clients like yourself to be around when they do the on-site inspection. This can put you in a bind, especially when you’ve got concerns that you want clarified or simply want to see how they do the property assessment.
Seasoned inspectors will allow you to be with them on-site so you can see how they come up with the details on the final report. It’s worth noting, however, that a portion of the inspection may have to be done alone by the inspector so he or she can focus on the finer details as well as methodically go through the structure undeterred.
Do you offer any kind of follow-up support?
At the end of the day, you want a building inspection report that can be easily comprehended. If it isn’t and you have to wrestle with one jargon after the other, it’s imperative that the inspector won’t charge you extra to debrief you over their findings. Be wary of inspectors that specify in their contract that they don’t allow post-inspection follow-ups.
Ideally, your prospect inspector should take you through the report findings and be willing to answer any questions you may have about their processes and observations. It really won’t take too much time going over the details and this follow-up service is something you’ll largely benefit from.
Finding a Building Inspector That Offers Comprehensive Assistance
When it comes to making sound investment decisions like buying properties, having ample knowledge of an asset is critical. To make an informed choice in your next property buying venture, feel free to give our experienced team a call today!