Under Construction: Does your new home meet the Australian Standards?
Building a new home should be an exciting and fulfilling experience but since COVID hit, the residential property building market in Perth has been a difficult and often painful path to navigate. With so many horror stories of delays and shoddy workmanship it begs the question; what can I do to avoid this?
Unfortunately, when it comes to delays on materials and trades there isn’t much that can be done. The perfect storm of rising costs of materials, product availability and the lack of quality tradesman means that everything has slowed down and even forced some Construction companies into insolvency.
These problems are out of the control of ordinary people trying to build a new home but ensuring the completed work is of a high quality and up to the Australian Standard should be paramount, especially in the current climate where these building pressures can result in cutting corners and costs.
More than ever, it’s imperative for property owners who are building new homes to seek the expertise of an Independent Building Inspector throughout the various stages of the building process. The best way to ensure the most crucial parts of your new home are being built correctly and to all relevant Australian Standards is by utilising an Under Construction Inspection.
What is an Under Construction Inspection?
As the name suggests, this inspection is conducted during the construction process at different various stages. These comprehensive inspections place intensive scrutiny on several aspects of a new home build and are designed to ensure proper building techniques, workmanship, and quality during the building process to protect homeowners and their investments.
To understand how these inspections benefit homeowners, it’s important to first understand what each stage generally entails.
The initial stage typically focuses on the slab, which takes place after the concrete has been poured and allowed to dry. Using the current building plans, the Building Inspector will examine the dimensions and size of the slab to ensure they’re accurate, that the plumbing is placed properly, and the overall workmanship is of an acceptable quality. Your inspector will check to make sure the slab work is completed in accordance with the plans and up to Australian Standards, while also informing you of any cracks, they’re severity and any affect to the overall project.
After the slab has been poured, dried, and inspected, the next step in construction will be the framing/brickwork of the walls. When the walls have been completed, the Building Inspector will again use the current building plans and specifications to ensure that the walls structure, placement, and any windows and doorways conform with the plans.
The roof inspection is a critical inspection that ensures the structural stability of your home. The purpose of this inspection is to ensure all roof framing construction methods are to the Australian Standards and engineering plans. Tie-down straps will also be inspected to make sure they’re correctly installed.
After the construction is completed, there is one final inspection that should be carried out before the handover, the Practical Completion Inspection. The Building Inspector will complete a detailed inspection of all the finished materials and workmanship, including ceilings, bathrooms, cabinets, insulation, electrical, plumbing, plastering, windows and doors etc. The workmanship will be checked to ensure all work has been completed professionally, that the layout and front elevation are consistent with the plans and finishing components have been accurately installed.
Once the work has been finished and you’ve taken ownership of the property (Handover), you’ll be taking the risk of accepting ownership of any major defects or building mistakes. Trying to have these issues rectified with your builder after the final balance of your account has been paid can be a lengthy process, and sometimes these disputes can become legal battles.
Nothing will ever run 100% perfectly during a new home build, but the last thing you want is to end up with expensive problems after handover that could have been easily identifiable if a building inspection was conducted during the earlier stages of the build.
In the end, Under Construction and Practical Completion Inspections provided by Professional Building Inspection companies in Perth can help you to avoid headaches or possible drawn-out legal disputes with your builder, so you can focus on moving into and enjoying your new home.