Building Defects Assessment Reporting

Many organizations face the challenge of obtaining accurate data on current building and asset conditions through a building defects inspection.  Accurate building condition data is essential for lifecycle costing, the scheduling of maintenance routines, meeting compliance obligations and budgetary submissions.

QBM provides a solid basis on which to develop plans for future action and acts as a record against which to measure change.

Do you just want to know what is wrong with the building for maintenance planning?  Would you like recommendations on what to do to rectify the problems, and what about the costing for the rectification works?  QBM’s professional inspectors can do all or only some of this for you.  As a client of QBM, you decided what you want done and how detailed you need your reports.

All QBM Building Defects inspection and Condition reports include colour photographic evidence of all identified items and the original digital photos can be made available to you should you require them.

The professional report

A more professional report would encompass full building and complex as well as digital photo recording of the actual condition. This is the full report that should be updated at every periodic inspection. How else do you really know the true condition of the property?
Unless a property manager can do all this, guaranteeing all building elements of the property will be inspected by a qualified inspector and not just one of the unqualified staff members, and then there is a risk exposure present.

Another benefit that arises from the use of qualified and trained building inspectors conducting proper and thorough inspections is that the building inspector can advise the managers on upcoming maintenance issues should be budget for in the future. This would be a welcome relief for body corporate and owners who might otherwise be burdened by a sudden spike on the maintenance or accumulation fund levies.

Regular, professional inspections will not prevent defects occurring, but they will identify them early so repairs can be carried out immediately to prevent major dramas and significant costs. Major repairs can seriously affect the value of a property often causing losses of tens of thousands of dollars in value. Owners want two experts not just one: they want a good property manager and also an independent building and property inspector.

Property Management of Strata Buildings: a salutary lesson

Strata managers and property manager are often challenged by the rising costs of managing their buildings. Many body corporates are reliant on the property manager to maintain the building to preserve the look and appearance of the property. Many conduct periodic inspections to produce a condition report. If such reports are conducted by unqualified and untrained staff members of the property management company to look for hidden problems. In one case an apartment in a multi story building had a water leak from a shower unit. Each time a plumber was called and the tiles were grouted over. This went on for years until a building inspector discovered that a water pipe had been punctured by a wall fitting, casing water damage that needed major repairs.

The end result was that the body corporate sued the property management company for the damages and cost of repair, plus the property management company also had to pay the tenant’s motel accommodation costs while the repairs were completed, and they had to pay all legal and court costs, reportedly totalling well over $42,000.

Property management companies often get their staff to conduct the periodic inspections, and this is common practice throughout the industry. The problem with this system is, they are not qualified to inspect and assess the components of the buildings; in most cases never checking under the floors, looking in the roof space, checking the showers for  leaks (by the way, shower leaks are responsible for being the biggest number of defects found in this country). The property manager’s condition report is a very basic tick sheet that reports on things like the lawns and gardens being tidy, the inside being clean, and the tenant paying the rent on time.

You need to know your property is adequately inspected by a competent person who has a building background, knows what to look for and to catch problems early. Most property management companies just do a halfway decent condition report on the property before a new tenant signs the condition report and moves into the property.

However, this report in almost every case is a very basic condition tick sheet that comments on the cosmetic condition of the property; recording such things as stains in the foyer or the condition of the common areas such as garden, driveways.

A more professional report would encompass full internals and wall cavities, under rood cavities as well as digital photo recording of the actual condition. This is the full report that should be updated at every periodic inspection. How else do you really know the true condition of the property?

Unless a property manager can do all this, guaranteeing all building elements of the property will be inspected by a qualified inspector and not just one of the unqualified staff members, then there is a risk exposure present.

Another benefit that arises from the use of qualified and trained building inspector conducting proper and thorough inspections is that the building inspector can advise the managers on upcoming maintenance issues should be budget for in the future. This would be a welcome relief for body corporate and owners who might otherwise be burdened by a sudden spike on the maintenance or accumulation fund levies. Regular, professional inspections will not prevent defects occurring, but they will identify them early so repairs can be carried out immediately to prevent major dramas and significant costs. Major repairs can seriously affect the value of a property often causing losses of tens of thousands of dollars in value. Owners want two experts not just one: they want a good property manager and also an independent building and property inspector.

Contact Quality Building Management today to organize your Building Defects Inspection.