What does a building inspector look for?


Building inspections are a crucial part of the process of purchasing or renovating a property in Sydney, New South Wales (NSW). A building inspection involves a professional inspection of a property’s structural and functional components, including the building’s foundation, roof, walls, plumbing, electrical systems, and more.

The primary purpose of a building inspection is to identify any existing or potential problems with the property that may require repair or maintenance. This information is essential for prospective buyers or homeowners, as it can help them make informed decisions about the property’s purchase or renovation. Below is an outline of the basics of building inspections in Sydney, NSW, including why they are important, what they involve, and how to choose the right building inspector.

Importance of building inspections

Building inspections are essential for several reasons. Firstly, they help identify any structural or functional issues with a property, such as water damage, electrical faults, or foundation problems. These issues may not be immediately visible to the untrained eye, but they can have significant consequences if left unaddressed. For example, water damage can lead to mold growth and cause structural damage to a building, while electrical faults can pose a fire hazard. Building inspections can provide buyers and homeowners with peace of mind. Knowing that a property has been thoroughly inspected and any issues have been identified and addressed can give them confidence in their investment. Building inspections can also be used to negotiate the purchase price of a property. If a building inspector identifies any issues with the property, the buyer can use this information to negotiate a lower purchase price or require the seller to fix the issues before closing.


Building inspections typically involve a visual inspection of the property’s exterior and interior, including the roof, walls, foundation, plumbing, electrical systems, and more. The inspector will look for signs of damage, wear and tear, or other issues that may affect the property’s value or safety.

During the inspection, the building inspector will use specialized tools, such as moisture meters and thermal imaging cameras, to detect any hidden issues that may not be visible to the naked eye. They will also look for any code violations or safety hazards that may be present.

Once the inspection is complete, the building inspector will provide a detailed report that outlines any issues found during the inspection. The report will also include recommendations for repairs or maintenance that may be required to address these issues.

Selecting a building inspector

Choosing the right building inspector is essential to ensuring that the inspection is thorough and accurate. When choosing a building inspector, it is important to consider the following factors:

  1. Qualifications and experience: Look for a building inspector who is qualified and experienced in building inspections. They should have relevant certifications and licenses, as well as a track record of conducting thorough inspections.
  2. Reputation: Check the building inspector’s reputation by reading online reviews or asking for references. A reputable building inspector should have positive reviews and be willing to provide references from past clients.
  3. Cost: Building inspections can vary in cost, so it is important to shop around and compare prices. However, it is important not to choose a building inspector based solely on cost, as a cheaper inspector may not provide the same level of thoroughness or accuracy.
  4. Professionalism: Look for a building inspector who is professional, courteous, and willing to answer any questions you may have. They should also be willing to provide a detailed report of their findings.

What is a major defect?

The way we consider a major defect is if you did nothing about the defect would it continue to get worse and deteriorate? If yes, then it’s a major defect.

What is a minor defect?

A minor defect is something that if left unrepaired would make no difference and would not get worse. 

building inspection Dilapidation Report Sydney

Clear View – Sub Floor House Inspection

House inspectors will inspect all accessible areas of the home. Floors, walls, ceilings, roof cavity, subfloor, fences, roofs, bathrooms, kitchens etc

Building inspections are a crucial part of the process of purchasing or renovating a property in Sydney, NSW. They help identify any existing or potential issues with the property and can provide buyers and homeowners with peace of mind. When choosing a building inspector, it is important to consider their qualifications, reputation, cost, and professionalism to ensure that the inspection. They will try to identify structural issues, water leaks, subsidence and foundation movement, site drainage issues, sub standard structural work, rising dampness, leaking bathrooms, waterproofing failure, and safety concerns. These are examples of major defects.

Minor defects will be mentioned but not as an individual item but as a whole. For example, scuff marks and paint blemishes throughout the property.

The report will make comments on the minor defect but will not note every individual minor defect.

What about the Timber pest report (Termite Inspection)?

termite treatment inspection against damage

So, what will the timber pest inspect? Basically, as the inspection reads: Timber pest inspection. The inspection and report will inspect and make comments on anything relating to timber pest.

Termites and wood borers are the main thing the inspector is looking for but of course the one we have to be super aware of is the termites.  Just like the building inspection they will require to inspect all areas of the home, such as the roof void, subfloor, interior, exterior, fences, bathrooms. The inspector will be trying to identify active termites or previous termite activity.

Termite damage, high moisture areas that are conducive to termites, and bathroom leaks are an attractant to termites so that is high area of concern.

Checking fences and timbers in ground contact, tree stumps, old form work timbers are common parts of the inspection. Identifying any previous treatments is important as if a property has had termites before there is a good chance the termites will return if no preventative termite treatment was completed.

Wood rot is highly conducive to termites, so inspectors will look at that and many other things.

These are a few things Building inspectors look for to help you understand what is involved during the inspection process. Talk to Clear View building inspectors today for any concerns about your property!