Recently I have been asked for a pre purchase inspection, on a referral from a solicitor, for one of his clients. The client had found the house he wanted and inspected it himself but noted a problem and asked me to inspect paying particular attention to the stumps.
I completed the inspection and this is what I wrote
This extended and renovated dwelling presents well but on close inspection reveals catastrophic foundation failure which has caused brick walls to be out of plumb and out of level and timber and concrete floors to be out of level. Brickwork also exhibits mortar erosion through Krypto efflorescence when groundwater salts are crystalized.
I have used spirit level to confirm that the brickwork is out of lefvel and out of plumb and thart the floors are badly out of level
It appears that the entire dwelling has tilted towards the back and the slab extension tilted the opposite way toward the front
Repairs to this dwelling are likely to be very expensive and a further engineering report is highly recommended before purchase. A substantial repair budget is highly recommended.
Needless to say the client walked away from this property which was auctioned later that week and some other “lucky buyer “got it.
About a week later the client found another home about which I said:
This dwelling is in very good condition with no significant issues noted. Purchaser to check wioth vendor that the pergola has been built with building permit and the termite protection maintenance should be brought up to date.
Garden beds against brick walls at front of dwelling create high termite risk and should be removed”
There you have it, just like Lemons are in season year around so are catastrophic house purchase blunders. Take care and make sure you get a competent inspection before you buy a home.
As a pre purchase inspector I have seen thousands of homes in varying condition of dilapidation. A lot can be learnt from that, how homes fail and that knowledge is then applied when inspecting new homes under construction for prevention. Can’t beat experience.
There are inspectors that only specialise in new home inspections trying to sell you that as a virtue, it’s not, it’s a limitation. A true expert will not only have extensive construction experience but also extensive inspection experience of new homes under construction and established homes.