Our first home buying story… with a building inspection…

Whether you’re buying or building a home, there’s a lot to consider without having to worry about with new home building inspections on the property. Unless of course, you are already in the industry and or have a good understanding of it in the first place.

Our home buying experiences go a little like this..

I walked into the home, it was a character house, built around the 1930’s and I wanted it! I told my husband it was perfect for us and we should buy it. That was as far as it went. It had stained glass windows, floor boards, built-in fire places in two rooms, a cute bathroom, big kitchen, high ceilings and that’s all I saw.

I had my dad perform a building inspection on the home because BCI was his business and baby for the previous 15 years and he saw a building – not a home. This was handy because unlike buyers, building inspectors may ‘like’ a home but they don’t ‘love’ them the way I did and buyers often do –  blindly.

The inspection picked up a number of areas that required attention, only five of which we were able to negotiate as part of our sale. The report was totally un-biased and reported that the floor boards were uneven, a footing on the front veranda required replacing, a tree was growing from underneath the home, the back veranda had a leak and the toilet cistern was not flushing properly.  Upon receiving this report, I was shocked and worried that we had put an offer on a home that I loved but was going to cost us a lot of money.<

This is where inspectors are worth their weight in gold. They explain defects that the lay person may deem major and explain easy and often very cost effective ways to rectify them.

Take our home for example. Despite working in the business at the time, I was stressing. This is how it panned out.. The issue with the floor boards was due to age and while they were still structurally sound, no immediate attention would be required. We lived in the house for four years and never had any issues with them despite being uneven in one room and we knew about this when we bought it. I sent our real estate agent the report and the sellers were very obliging in having everything else fixed for us within a week. Even the back verandah, that is technically non-structural and not negotiable in the contract.

In total, the report probably saved us a couple thousand dollars but more so, a lot of time because we didn’t have to organise trades people to come in once we had settled.