Perth Property Hub


Perth Property Hub

So, you’ve made an offer on your dream home and it’s just been accepted. Congratulations! The next step is to book in your Pest & Building Inspection to ensure that everything is pest free and structurally sound before settlement day. But how do you decide on the best Building Inspector for the job?

Buying a home in Perth is a huge financial commitment so it’s understandable if you may be thinking about ways to cut any extra costs and considering hiring a Building Inspector with the lowest quote. However, this decision could result in you not getting the best value for your money in the long run, especially if the cheap Inspector isn’t as thorough with the Building Inspection as you had expected they would be.

Furthermore, when you base your decision on the lowest price you run the risk of selecting a Building Inspector who doesn’t carry the required insurance covers to protect you from financial loss. Remember, any oversight and/or errors in the Building Inspection Report can result in you obtaining a property that is not financially viable.

The surprising truth about the Building Inspection industry

You would be right to expect that Building Inspectors would be working in a regulated industry, but the truth may be surprising to you. Building inspectors are neither regulated nor are they required to be licensed in Western Australia. To call yourself a “Registered Building Inspector” you just need to complete a 2-day course then you’ll receive a random registration number which has no connection to the building commission.

This means that you could potentially be getting your new home inspected by someone that is not suitably qualified to perform the job. They may have some basic knowledge on buildings but not enough that you would risk working with an amateur on such an important task.

What you should be looking for in your Building Inspector is that they’re also a “registered builder”. This requires a completion of a Diploma in Building and Construction plus a minimum of seven years’ experience in carrying out or supervising building works and/or constructing homes. This evidence needs to be provided to the building commission to obtain your registration number.

With so many potential pitfalls in an unregulated building inspections Perth industry, what can you do to protect yourself from the risk of financial disaster? We think the best way to do this is by ensuring your Building Inspector is not only a “Registered Builder” but also fully insured. Industry professionals wouldn’t dream of trying to conduct business without these credentials and having these shows that your Building Inspector is operating a legitimate and professional business.

What insurance should your Building and Pest Inspector hold?

If your Building Inspector was inside the roof void and slipped and fell through the ceiling, you could end up being liable for it if the Inspector isn’t insured and doesn’t take responsibility. Any damage or even injuries that occur while they’re assessing your home could become your responsibility too. To avoid this, your Building Inspector should hold Public Liability Insurance, so you can be protected in these instances.

There is also another very important insurance that you should look out for which is Professional Indemnity Insurance. This insurance helps protect you from financial losses that may occur due to issues with your Building Inspectors report. For example: If there was a significant structural issue with your roof that wasn’t noticed by your Inspector and after settlement it subsequently caved in, this insurance would cover for any losses you would incur to repair the damage.

It may be tempting to just choose the Building Inspector with the cheapest quote but there are many considerations that shouldn’t be overlooked, such as Insurance cover and if they’re a Registered Builder. The Building Inspectors in Perth that carry full insurance may be slightly more to hire but you can rest assured that if something were to go wrong during the inspection process or in the final Inspection report, you’re fully covered.

At Total Home Inspections we hold Comprehensive Professional Indemnity Insurance to $1,000,000 and Public Liability Insurance to $5,000,000. Our Principal Building Inspector Ben Black has over 25 years of experience in the building industry as a licensed carpenter, building supervisor, registered builder (registration no. BC101983) and registered timber pest (termite) inspector (registration no. 7421). With Ben’s extensive and diverse knowledge of residential buildings, you can rest assured that your next property purchase will be in safe hands.

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A collaboration of Perth Property Experts freely sharing their knowledge and expertise through a series of videos.