Whether over a 100 years old or built yesterday all buildings have defects.

Most people can probably see most defects for themselves during an open inspection. If that is the case why would you bother paying a so called “expert” to conduct an inspection.

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Typical crack in this house

A message received from a potential client cancelling an inspection raised this question sufficient for the writer to go and check the house in the next open inspection. This client indicated there was no need to inspect as there were too many cracks in the house and they would not be bidding for it at auction.

Off to the open inspection we trot and a quick walk through with a number of other people present all interested enough to have a look. The comments coming from these people included, this is a demo job; this needs bowling over etc.

These people too were expressing concern over the cracks.

There were a number of cracks in this house, the worst of which the standards classify as a category 2 crack. These are cracks that vary between 1.0 mm and 5.0 mm; are noticeable but easily filled. Doors & Windows might stick slightly. Depending on the neighbourhood you can fill them but they are likely to reappear at the change of season. In some suburbs this is common and realistically a condition of living in an older home at that location. I live in one.

Salt damp in bedroom

Salt damp in bedroom

So while a number of people including our client are stressing about cracking that in our opinion they do not need to stress about I found extensive salt damp in the walls of the house. In this instance this was a far more serious issue and one not noted or understood as being an issue at least by our client. We estimate the cost of rectifying the salt damp as in the vicinity (in this house) of around $ 10,000.00, a not insignificant sum.

This highlights the two reasons why you should seek the advice of an expert.

The first everyone would understand is without the expert many of these people would have bought a fault worth $ 10,000 to fix. A fault that if not corrected could cause respiratory health issues for anyone sleeping in the bedrooms affected.

The second and maybe not as obvious a reason is you may, without an expert to put context to a defect, may reject a house that does not have as serious an issue as you felt it did.