It may seem one of the more tedious aspects of buying yourself a home, but building inspections are a godsend. Trust me.
It’s surprising how many people don’t think about getting a pre-purchase building inspection or even contemplate forgoing one for the sake of saving a few hundred dollars.
Others believe skimping on a building report will speed up the buying process, but as you’ll see below, an inspection is essential for a number of key reasons.
1. Checking for structural issues
A structurally sound building is a must when you’re making a purchase because of safety issues and cost concerns.
Structural weaknesses can cause collapses that may injure a person, but there’s also the possibility that the structural issue will be nearly impossible to repair without major construction.
Buildings must also conform to the Building Codes and Standards of Australia. If you purchase a home or commercial building that does not conform to these standards, you will be responsible for the cost of bringing the building up to code.
Getting a pre-purchase building inspection done can help you avoid purchasing a building with major structural issues – saving you major financial and emotional heartache down the track.
2. Budgeting for repairs
You may feel it’s worthwhile to purchase a building that needs some repairs because it is available for a discounted price, but going into the sale without an inspection could mean big costs for hidden repair issues.
If you opt for a pre-purchase building inspection, you know exactly what needs to be done to bring the building up to where you’d like it to be.
Inspections are a cost saver and a life saver
Then you can look at hiring a professional to give estimates on the repairs that need to be done to complete an accurate budget for repair costs.
For renovations, inspections are a cost saver and a life saver.
3. Electrical wiring and smoke alarms
New house, good. Smoke and fire, very bad.
Faulty electrical wiring can make for a dangerous situation that could increase the risk of electrocution or fire.
Not having enough smoke alarms installed increases the likelihood of injury or death in the event of a fire, so invest in a building inspection to avoid serious injury related to electrical wiring issues or fire.
4. Identifying unsafe areas of a home
If you’re buying a home for your family, you want to be sure the home is safe and ready for you to live in.
A pre-purchase building inspection will reveal any areas of the home that may be deemed unsafe, in particular, the presence of asbestos and other dangerous materials, missing or loose balustrades and cracks in walls.
Uncovering such hazards gives you the opportunity to decide if you are willing to take on the cost of making the home safe.
5. Evaluating sundry structures
The building itself is not the only part of a property that may need the keen eye of a building inspector. Did you know sundry structures including sheds and patios also have to be examined?
Local council regulations (and they vary from shire to shire) often dictate where these structures can be built, and purchasing a building that does not conform with these regulations can mean tearing down a building which may have been one of the reasons you decided to purchase the property in the first place.
Opting out of a pre purchase building inspection may seem tempting on the surface when you think you can save a few hundred dollars, but making sure the building you are purchasing is safe, requires no expensive repairs and conforms with council regulations is absolutely essential.
Inspecting could stop you making the biggest financial mistake of your life – it’s a very small price to pay.
By Brad Porteus ~ RealEstate.com.au