Whether you’ve just built a property or it’s been established for many years, when you move into it for the first time it’s a good idea to have a professional compile a building defects report. Don’t be fooled by the age of the building, everyone makes mistakes and it is possible a brand new building will have more defects than an older property.
But, that doesn’t mean you should walk away. The purpose of this report is to highlight issues with the building, allowing you to be prepared for what maintenance is necessary.
To help you understand the issues, here are some of the most common building defects:
Every property is likely to have cracks, they generally appear as the building settles and is not something to be concerned about. However, these are fine cracks.
If your building has large cracks it is possible that the foundations have moved and the structure has shifted. You’ll then need to assess it further to establish whether the cracks are a serious defect that is going to be expensive or even impossible to sort.
Large cracks often point to subsidence which means you need your property underpinned.
This is usually obvious to spot but the report will highlight the details of the issue. A damaged roof will make it possible for water and pests to get into your home. Both can cause a huge amount of damage and affect the structural stability of your home in the future.
You’ll need to see how bad the issue is to know how it must be dealt with, in the worst cases it will mean replacing the roof and any timber that has started to suffer from damp rot.
Most building defects will make the property more dangerous to enter and use but electricity is one of the most obvious dangers. The most common building defect is an electrical installation that is not in accordance with code.
When you’re going to be using an array of electrical equipment it’s important to know that you have a good supply, bad or old wiring will increase the risk of overloading and fires.
Wood in your building can start to rot from exposure to water, as mentioned above. But, pests, such as termites, can also enter your home from below and start to attack your home. If left untreated the termites can do a surprising amount of damage in a short space of time.
They are not the only pest you have to worry about but it is definitely worth having your timber assessed and any issues dealt with.
The older the property is the more likely it is that you’ll encounter this. But, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen in newer properties. If the damp course hasn’t been put in properly any building can suffer from rising damp.
This leads to mold growth and potential health issues. You’ll need to deal with the damp issue and redecorate all the affected areas, that’s a complicated job.