CHOICE membership

Building inspections - scope of work

Hi there

My home needs various works over the next 5-10 years or so - windows replaced, internal and external brick work remediation, timber flooring replacement, skirting boards, damp concerns, painting. I was wondering if it is worthwhile to get a professional in to advise me on the most pressing renovations and an order of works (do bricks or floor before windows for example so you don’t have to redo something). Do building inspectors do these custom jobs, or are they just following the pre-purchase tick the boxes type inspection? Do they just follow the standard or are they more flexible to specific needs, or do you need to ask each specialist? I would like to do these jobs in a sensible order and have someone advise on that.
Thanks

Adam

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I would say yes.

Assume you will use contractors/tradies to do the work. Carrying out multiple staged works can be costly as one will have to pay for mobilisation and remoblisation each time work is done and there is a high chance of rework… namely future work impacting on past work meaning one pays to have it done again.

A good experienced renovation builder should be better than a building inspector. A suitably experienced building consultant is another option and may be better for an independent view and more thorough deliverables.

Both you may need to pay for the initial advice and for preparation of a project (management) plan which provided staging of works (Gant chart), scope of works and risks. Possibly an indication of costs may be useful too. You will need to specify a PMP as the deliverable for the advice requested.

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It’s good to plan ahead. Depending on which state you are in there are also building surveyors, Certifiers or …who typically work on approvals and inspection of new builders or major renovations.

If you have a tight budget that makes it important to get the right support. Consider looking on line or asking friends for a building inspection service or individual who does purchasers building inspections. IE such as when you are buying a house and need a check before completing the contract. Those I have met are all ex builders. They usually work to fixed prices and will help to identify all the issues with your home. Discuss what you require before agreeing to use their services. Some are tick and flick as you suggest while others are happy to offer more. If you can talk to 3 or 4 over the phone about your needs, and compare how each responds.

A competent inspection will look for moisture, termites, signs of structural issues etc. There are also professionals who will do much more and even organise it for you. Some architects also offer similar service. In both of these examples expect the fees to be tens of thousands and the renovation work budget to be in the hundreds of thousands. Are your needs more modest?

Note:
As a rough guide, structural, pest and water/damp issues should come first. External cladding, painting weather proofing are important to maintain the integrity. Depending on budget, aluminium window replacements can be expensive. Timber flooring assuming it is tongue and groove boards on joists usually lasts a lifetime. It is very expensive to replace. It’s not something most would consider.

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Yes this is my main motivation.

I’ll take a look at building consultants, thanks :slightly_smiling_face:

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:+1:

I think so. The house has been restumped within 15 years so its just one corridor that may need some joists replaced rather than the whole floor. Brick damage is limited to a few areas not the whole house. The windows will be costly to do the whole house, but I am hoping the other jobs are not massive. I guess I wont know until someone comes in and takes a look, but the pre-purchase building inspection when we bought it didn’'t reveal major issues so I am hopeful!

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Do NOT use a building inspector. They will get you to sign a contract that absolves them of everything, and then you will have no recourse if they stuff up.

As others have suggested use qualified trades people. If it were me, I would opt for a builder who is able to plan out and cost all the tasks required and prioritise them.

If you are thinking of using someone, make sure that you do your due dilligence and ask for references, and then check past clients who had similar scope of work done.

Finally, make sure that you negotiate a reasonable schedule of payments so that you only pay a small amount up front, and the majority when you agree there has been successful completion of a task.

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Hi there I would definitely have it inspected i had an inspection and the inspector took videos of all the house areas stumps/underfloor. Walls plumbing.roof space areas and roof. We then discussed what found and a plan of action best250$ I ever spent.
David

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Hi @lawson, welcome to the community.

What a great result.

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