Building inspections

Buying or building a home is one of the biggest purchases most people make, and with South Australians holding onto their homes for an average of 12 years it’s important to buy right and avoid a costly mistake later.

Many homes are tidied up for sale, with the pre-sale spruce up ranging from a basic clean through to bogging cracks, repainting, retiling and regrouting, and even new floor coverings.

The makeover might look good, but it also sometimes masks symptoms of what might be more sinister problems, such as termite damage, salt damp, structural issues, unlicensed and dangerous electrical work, and more.

Our experienced members offer a range of services that include:

  • pre-purchase inspections of established homes,
  • construction and handover inspections for new homes,
  • expert technical reports,
  • assistance with disputes and/or court cases relating to building work,
  • design advice and plans,
  • pest inspections,
  • project and construction management,
  • forensic engineering inspections,
  • engineering advice and
  • energy star rating assessments.

Download our building inspection brochure


Pre-purchase inspections explained - what to look for when engaging a building consultant

Inspections explained

Pre-purchase inspections

Engaging an experienced building consultant who is trained to find problems lurking below the surface is a good investment. Any issues highlighted by a pre-purchase inspection doesn’t have to mean the end of the sale – it just helps you to make a more informed buying decision and purchase the house with your eyes wide open.

Termites and pest inspections

The termite remains the most dreaded of all household pests. Homes as little as one year old are susceptible to termite attack if care is not taken to maintain the perimeter termite barrier. A pre-purchase pest inspection will look out for some of the tell-tale signs of termites, such as mud-tracks along outside walls, doorframes and skirtings, discolouration of timber, blistering paint work or bulging plasterboard walls.

Asbestos inspections

Asbestos is a hidden danger that is estimated to be lurking in as many as one in every three Australian homes. Most buildings constructed prior to the mid-1970s are likely to contain some asbestos products. While experts draw on a range of clues, such as the age of a home or manufacturer labels on materials to spot asbestos, people who are not experts are unlikely to differentiate material containing asbestos from similar looking but non-asbestos building materials, such as flat cement sheeting. Often, there are no visual differences – and that’s why it is critical to use an expert and take out the guesswork.

Engineering inspections

A structural engineering inspection is different than a pre-purchase inspection. It is conducted by a structural engineer to check the structural soundness of a home or building’s load bearing components such as framing, foundation, beams, columns, trusses or posts.

A structural engineering inspection is typically conducted in response to questions or concerns about the structural integrity of a building or structure. The inspection could involve analysis of the entire structure or an examination of one specific element of the building.

Structural inspections

The Association has members who specialise in certain aspects of buildings, like brickwork, waterproofing and termite damage. These consultants have a depth of experience in their respective fields.

New construction

A home under construction should still have an independent review of work being done, as the days of mandatory inspections of houses being built are long gone. A construction inspection will identify any major faults now, rather than down the track or when it comes to sale time. Don't assume a builder or contractor is doing everything to the highest standard – and remember that an inspection might be the last line of defence against major defects.

An experienced building consultant can provide independent advice before and throughout the building process to give peace of mind and identify any matters of concern that should be raised with your builder.