Pre-purchase inspections of older homes is certainly important. There are many things that can impact on a house in a hundred years. Don’t be fooled however in thinking that age is the only reason for having an inspection on a home.


Recently constructed homes need inspecting too in order to avoid defects that can and do exist. Homes under construction likewise need independent inspections to reduce the chance of buying a defect that could cause much anguish in time.

I recently conducted a handover inspection of a newly completed home for a client. The builder is a well-known and trusted builder.

The inspection highlighted the need for staged construction inspections, inspections conducted at nominated stages during the construction of the home. I found a defect in the roof frame that requires urgent attention.

Split in truss makes truss structurally unsound

Split in truss makes truss structurally unsound

The king post web member of one truss is split right through and the structural integrity of the truss severely compromised. It requires the input of the engineer who designed the trusses for this house to determine the action required to make it structurally sound.

Here is the bottom line.

Fortunately I was able to access the roof void to discover this defect.  A similar defect in the wall framing could not be found at this stage of construction.

If such a fault could be found in the roof framing then it could be found in the wall framing. The only way to have discovered such a defect in the wall framing is before the wall linings were installed and the defect covered up. That requires a staged construction inspection.

No matter who the builder is or their reputation they can miss the existence of defects in houses they build. With tough economic times and a number of prominent builders going broke making rectification of defects difficult to organise it is important to heed the message of this blog post.

The moral is to protect your interests and increase the chances of finding and correcting defects by employing and independent building inspector.