A property inspection is a critical part of the home buying process. It provides home buyers with knowledge about the history and current state of your potential future home. However, it’s not as simple as asking a building inspector to come in and give their opinion on whether or not you should buy the house.

There are many things to consider before hiring a building inspector such as their experience, qualifications and level of service. Here are seven questions that every prospective homeowner should ask a building inspector before and after an inspection.

Before Getting a Building Inspector

Before you book your appointment, you want to make sure that the building inspector can do a thorough inspection of the house. Some building inspectors will provide packages that may include or exclude inspection areas or services. Make sure that the service you receive covers everything you need your building inspector to complete.

In addition to this, you can ask your building inspector these questions before making a booking or complete your research online by looking at reviews and their website.

Are you licensed, registered and insured?

You should know that being a licensed building practitioner is not a requirement in Melbourne to be able to complete a building inspection. That’s why it’s important to ask your building inspector what level of building inspections they are registered to complete in Victoria. There are 3 classes including unlimited, limited and pool safety.

If your building practitioner or inspector has unlimited access, they are permitted to inspect all building types, components, and any forms and types of construction. With limited access they are only able to inspect certain classes of buildings. With pool safety, the inspector is allowed to inspect the swimming pool and spa barrier to ensure they are within compliance standards.

Always or find out whether your building inspector is covered for any insurance. In the event that damages occur during the inspection, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that is covered by insurance. They should have at least Professional Indemnity insurance, and if they don’t we suggest looking for your inspection services elsewhere.

Ensure that your building inspector has the relevant insurance, qualifications and experience to carry out the inspections. Inspect East has unlimited access and is registered as a building practitioner (inspector) in Victoria. We have both Professional Indemnity and Public Liability insurance for your peace of mind.

What services do you provide?

Generally speaking a building inspection including a pre-purchase building inspection should cover all areas of a property including the interior, exterior, roofing (and cavity), retaining walls, subfloor areas as well as any areas that are also accessible.

Your building inspector may offer a range of services that fall within your requirements, but always be sure they are qualified to complete a specific or specialised type of inspection. They should be responsible, reliable and offer professional and timely services. If you’re planning on purchasing a house, you’ll need the building inspection report to make an informed decision before or during a short cooling off period.

At Inspect East, we have experience and qualifications in completing pest and termite inspection, as well as pool safety inspections to ensure that your swimming pool and spa are compliant with Australian Standards. We’ll provide a detailed building and pest inspection report on the day or within 24 hours with expert advice and recommendations on remediating any faults or issues.

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Do you offer an inspection report, and how long will it take to get the completed report?

A professional building inspector should always provide a building inspection report to provide a detailed overview of the conditions of the property. A comprehensive, detailed inspection report typically takes between 24-48 hours to complete. Be aware if reviews have indicated they didn’t receive a report within this timeframe.

If you require a report sooner than the indicated timeframe, bring this urgency up with your inspector and they can assist you with getting the inspection report when you need it the most.

At Inspect East, after completing the inspection we’ll send you the report on the same day or within 24 hours, whichever comes first. We understand how stressful this process can be with short timeframes so if you need any assistance during this process, please let us know so we can answer any of your questions as soon as possible.

Questions to Ask After the Building and Pest Inspection

After booking your building and pest inspection appointment, we highly recommend that on the day of the inspection, that you ask any questions at the end after the building inspector has completed the thorough inspection. You may inadvertently distract them which can lead to missing out on key areas during the inspection process.

Once the building inspector has finished inspecting the property, you can ask them these questions:

How does the property compare to similar buildings you’ve previously inspected before around the same age and construction type?

When you ask your inspector this question, it allows you to gauge the condition of the property depending on the size, age and construction. If it is an old house that has gone through renovations that have kept it in good condition, then you don’t need to fork out thousands of dollars in repairs.

On the other hand if it seems like a new building but there are some major issues that an untrained eye can’t detect then having a building inspector there is useful when they’ve inspected thousands of similar buildings before.

Inspect East has completed thousands of building inspections in Melbourne, so you’ll know we’ll be equipped with the experience to inspect any type of residential and commercial buildings.

Are there any major issues with the property, and what kind of recommendations do you have to make it compliant with Australian standards?

You can ask them to identify any key areas of concern especially if it involves structural building issues or pest problems. They can point out where these issues are right there at the property and where they’ve highlighted these issues in the report. If you’re concerned about the level of damage or faults, feel free to contact Inspect East about any questions you may have.

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Are there any immediate concerns that need fixing or repairing before purchasing this property?

You would want to ask this question because if you decide on purchasing the property, you’ll need to address these issues immediately. Your inspector can give you an estimation on how much repairs would cost which can help you decide on your final decision.

Would you buy a property that has these issues? Why or why not?

A building inspector can provide unbiased expert advice based on their experiences and the issues they found at the property. We highly recommend making an informed decision based on your inspector’s recommendation, in the end you’ll need to decide if it’s the right investment for you.

Conclusion

At the end of the day, you’ll need to decide if it’s worth the investment if there are any issues found by your inspector making it worth the repairs or renovation costs. Asking your building inspector these questions will give you a better knowledge of what issues are within the property and how important they are. You can get in touch with us for a consultation to discuss any questions or concerns you may have.

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