Total Home Inspections News

3 April 2022

Perth Building Inspectors: 5 things to check before making your choice

When you’re in the market for a new home, it’s important to be thorough when picking the perfect property. With so many things to consider and decisions to be made it’s a smart move to obtain the services of a professional Building Inspector to ensure the process of purchasing your new home is as smooth and painless as possible.

Although your new home may seem in great condition to the naked eye, it’s hard to tell when the builder or owner may have covered up any problems or damage to secure a quick sale. Intentional or otherwise, you’ll want to be sure that you don’t end up purchasing a property with lots of unforeseen issues. Hiring a Perth Building Inspector is as easy as searching Google and calling the first Inspectors that come up, but there are a few things you should check before making your choice.

Here are a few things to consider:


For starters, you should check how much industry experience your Perth Building Inspector has and how long they’ve been operating. Ensure they are a registered builder, this way, you can check their registration details online to ensure you have the most suitably qualified Inspector for the job.

Having have a registered builder as your Inspector is essential, so that you can be certain they completely understand the required standards of property construction.

What’s included in the Inspection?

Understanding the scope of the Building Inspection is very important, so you’ll want to ask about what’s included during the assessment. This will help you set realistic expectations of what will and will not be assessed and included in the Building Inspection Report.

Building Inspectors are on the lookout for things such as leaks or water damage, roof and structural issues, surface cracks, foundation concerns, and signs of pest activity. If we think that the property will need further inspection, this recommendation will typically be included in the final report.

What’s included in the Building Inspection Report

Most importantly, you’ll want to confirm that the Inspection and the report will be conducted in accordance with the Australian Standard AS 4349.1 Inspection of Buildings. Also, whether the report will include photos, details for everything the inspector finds and even how long will it take to receive the final report.

There may be a few questions that arise after you receive the final report, so you may want to confirm that the Inspector will make time for you either in person or over the phone to elaborate on any queries you may have. Asking for a sample report can also be a good idea so that you can understand the extent the reporting goes to and it’s thoroughness.

What Insurance cover do they hold?

If your Building Inspector was inside the roof void and slipped and fell through the ceiling, you could end up being liable for it if the Inspector isn’t insured and doesn’t take responsibility. Any damage or even injuries that occur while they’re assessing your home could become your responsibility too. To avoid this, your Building Inspector should hold Public Liability Insurance, so you can be protected in these instances.

There is also another very important insurance that you should look out for which is Professional Indemnity Insurance. This insurance helps protect you from financial losses that may occur due to issues with your Building Inspectors report. For example: If there was a significant structural issue with your roof that wasn’t noticed by your Inspector and after settlement it subsequently caved in, this insurance would cover for any losses you would incur to repair the damage.

What is the Cost?

“You get what you pay for” is an old adage that certainly applies when you’re looking for a competent Building Inspector. It’ll be tempting to just hire an inspector that’s offering the cheapest rates, but always consider the quality of work and experience of the Inspector assessing the service you’re getting. The cost is not the most important factor!

Unfortunately, there is no governing body that states Building Inspectors must be a registered builder in Western Australia. A “registered building inspector” is someone who has studied a 2-day course and is given a random “registration number” which has no connection to the building commission. There is no previous experience required to attend this 2-day course and there are now ex-mortgage brokers and ex-real estate agents completing building inspections in Perth even though they have never been in the construction industry.

The cheapest quote normally means the inspector does not have the experience or qualifications which could potentially cost you thousands of dollars in structural rectification work due to the inspector lack of experience. You’ll want a Building Inspector that knows everything there is to know about the materials used, the structure of buildings, and Western Australian laws & building regulations.

Ben Black, our principal building inspector, has over 25 years of experience in the building industry as a licensed carpenter, building supervisor, registered builder (registration no. BC101983) and registered timber pest (termite) inspector (registration no. 7421) with Ben’s extensive and diverse knowledge of residential buildings, you can rest assured that your next property purchase will be in safe hands.