PERTH PROPERTY INSPECTIONS VISUAL BUILDING INSPECTION
TERMS AND CONDITIONS
This agreement relates to a visual inspection only and is conducted in accordance with Australian Standards AS 4349.1 & AS 4349.0. Any person who relies upon the contents of this report does so acknowledging that the following clauses define the scope and limitations of the inspection, and form an integral part of the report.
1. PURPOSE OF INSPECTION
1.1 The purpose of this inspection is to provide advice to a prospective purchaser or other interested party regarding the condition of the property at the time of the inspection. The advice is limited to the reporting of the condition of the building elements and services as set out in Aust. Standard 4349.1-2007.
2.1 This report is NOT intended to stringently scrutinise every aspect of the building but is a reasonable attempt to identify any obvious or significant defects (namely obvious or significant defects of sufficient magnitude where rectification has to be carried out in order to avoid unsafe conditions, loss of utility or further deterioration of the building) apparent at the time of the inspection and form an opinion regarding these.
2.2 The inspection is a non-invasive visual inspection only, limited to those areas of the building that are fully accessible and visible to the inspector at the time of the inspection. The inspection does not include dismantling, taking apart or moving objects. For further information on the limitations of the inspection caused by access and visual inspection see clauses 3.5 – 3.9… below.
2.3 This inspection report is not a certificate of compliance of the property within the requirements of any Act, regulation, ordinance, local law or by-law and is not a warranty against problems developing in the future. It does not identify unauthorised or non-compliant building work. It does not identify title boundaries, building set-out, boundary set backs, building heights and datum’s, encroachments, location of any easements, covenants, heritage listing or any other similar restrictions imposed by statutory authorities.
2.4 The inspection will be carried out in line with (unless agreed to in writing, prior to the inspection) Australian Standard AS 4349.1-2007, Clause 3.2.2 Safe and reasonable access, which states: The extent of accessible areas shall be determined by the inspector at the time of inspection, based on the conditions encountered at the time of inspection. The inspector shall also determine whether sufficient space is available to allow safe and reasonable access. If sub-floor areas appear to have been recently sprayed with any Chemical Treatments these areas should not be inspected unless it is safe to do so.
2.5 This report does not and cannot make comment upon defects that may have been concealed; the assessment or detection of defects (including rising damp and leaks) that may be subject to prevailing weather conditions. This report does not cover or comment on all building services, furnishings and the like, that may be present in the building. The inspector will not inspect inside of walls, between floors, inside flat roofing, inside any eave areas, behind any stored goods in cupboards, behind heavy furnishings and other areas that are obstructed at our inspection.
2.6 The Pre Purchase Structural Building Inspection is an assessment of the structure of the property only, the inspection is carried out in accordance with Appendix A of the AS 4349.1-2007. It does not report on any non structural elements of construction, minor defects or serious safety hazards. Items not commented on include for example roof coverings, gas, water & sanitary plumbing, cabinetry, windows, doors, trims, fencing, minor structures, non structural damp issues, ceiling linings, plastering, painting, tiling etc.
2.7 The Pre Purchase Comprehensive Building Inspection is limited to the reporting of the building elements and services as set out in AS 4349.1 – 2007 Appendix ‘C’. The inspector need not inspect or report on the list of exclusions provided in Appendix D of AS 4349.1-2007 however our ‘Comprehensive’ building inspection does comment on the following excluded items: Air conditioning, operation of smoke detectors & RCD safety switches, light switches & fittings, ovens, cook tops, rangehoods, exhaust fans, automatic garage door opener, floor coverings, wall paint and roof insulation. Any of these items mentioned in the report have only been tested using normal operator controls and is a limited visual inspection only. Where necessary a suitable qualified person should be engaged for any issues outlined in the report or if more detail is required on the appliance or fixture for example the efficiency of air conditioning units. Excluded items are included in clause 3.10.
2.8 ROOF FRAMING: The Building Permit issued for the property stipulates the applicable building regulations, standards, conditions, Structural Engineers requirements and potentially Structural Engineered alternative solutions. AS 4349.1 states “the Report is not a certificate of compliance that the property complies with the requirements of any Act, regulation, ordinance, local law or by-law” and “The building shall be compared with a building that was constructed in accordance with the generally accepted practice at the time of construction and which has been maintained such that there has been no significant loss of strength and serviceability”. With the above in mind, the Inspection and Reporting of Internal Roof Defects is subject to the following benchmarks/guidelines set by Perth Property Inspections.
(a) For all years of construction, the performance of the structural members and connections will be visually assessed for deflection, movement, deterioration, and fatigue to determine if there is any significant loss of strength and/or serviceability. If there is evidence of a significant loss of strength/performance or serviceability, this will be nominated as a “Structural Defect”.
(b) In sheet metal clad timber framed roof construction there is a requirement for certain tie down elements that gives the roof the ability to resist uplift forces at design wind loadings. A lack of, consistent, complete or adequate tie downs to the roof structure is not considered a ‘Structural Defect’ but is considered a ‘Compliance Omission’
(c) In a Pre Purchase Structural Building Inspection a lack of tie down to a roof structure will not be commented on because it is not considered a ‘Structural Defect’
(d) In a Pre Purchase Comprehensive Building Inspection a significant lack of tie down in metal clad timber framed roof construction in houses from 2012 onwards will be commented on and is considered to be a ‘Compliance Omission’. Perth Property Inspections takes this position as we believe that full tie down provision within a pine roof frame essentially applied in the building industry from circa 2012 to the majority of timber connections.
(e) Struts supporting the underpurlin that have been cut flush with the underpurlin and not strapped will be considered a ‘Structural Defect’ only if a loss of strength/performance is determined.
(f) Collar tie spacing will be assessed but only commented on if the lack of collar ties has caused a lack of strength/performance to the visual areas within the roof space.
3.1 In accordance with AS 4349.1 this is a “Visual Only” inspection to assess the general condition of the building and report on any major defects to the structural integrity of the building elements that may be apparent at the time of the inspection. Whether or not a defect is considered significant or not, depends to a large extent, upon the age and type of the building inspected. The building should be compared to a building of similar age constructed in accordance with the acceptable standards at the time of construction.
3.2 This inspection report does NOT INCLUDE assessment of items outside the scope of the requested inspection report, unless specified in writing.
3.3 This report does not cover assessment of the ground on which the structure was placed, whether it is a filled site, subject to subsidence, landslip or flooding, but is not limited to these.
3.4 This is NOT a report by a structural engineer nor is it a guarantee or warranty of any description that structural damage does not exist or may not occur in the future. Should advice of a structural nature be required a structural engineer should be engaged.
3.5 In accordance with AS 4349.1, the inspection will not extend to areas where access is restricted, including physical obstructions, no or small access holes, crawl space too small, height and safety issues, access is denied or deliberately concealed, but is not limited to these. The report will identify any area or item within scope of the inspection that was not inspected and the factor that prevented inspection.
3.6 Due to the safety aspect and possibility of damage the inspector will not walk on tile or slate roofs unless, agreed to in writing (in the special conditions prior to the inspection) by the client or owner releasing Perth Property Inspections and the inspector from any claim in case of any unforeseen damage occurring.
3.7 All sections of the property should be fully accessible and visible to the Inspector at the time of the inspection. It is the client’s responsibility to arrange access to the property and all parts of the property to be inspected. The inspector will not wait on site for access to be made and will only inspect those areas that are fully accessible and visible at the time of the inspection.
3.8 This inspection is non-invasive and DOES NOT include breaking apart, dismantling, removing or moving objects including, but not limited to, foliage, roof insulation, sisalation, floor or wall coverings, ceilings, floors, furnishings, appliances or personal possessions. The inspector cannot see inside walls, between floors, inside skillion roofing, behind stored goods or other areas that are concealed or obstructed. The inspector will not dig, gouge, force or perform any invasive procedure. Visible timbers cannot be destructively probed or hit without written permission of the property owner.
3.9 In accordance with Appendix B of AS 4349.1, only the interior and immediate exteriors of strata title or similar multi-unit properties are inspected. This excludes common areas of the building and review of the Owners records. It is advised that the client obtain a “special-purpose” inspection report adequately specifying for the inspection of common areas of the building. It is also advised for the client to obtain a review of the Owners Corporation or similar records prior to deciding on the purchase of the property.
3.10 AS 4349.1 – 2007 Appendix D Exclusions of items from inspection. Excluded items on this list include but are not limited to are: gas fittings and fixtures, alarm systems, intercom systems, ducted vacuum systems, dishwashers, spa baths, swimming pools, spas and associated filtration and pumps equipment, pool safety barriers, timber pest activity, retic irrigation systems & bores and associated pumps and equipment, Timber and metal framing size and adequacy and concealed tie-downs and bracing these will not be inspected or reported on unless the inspector sees fit to included them for any reason. A full list of Appendix D exclusions can be obtained by contacting our office. It is advised that (where required) a suitably qualified person be engaged for assessment of these items. They include (but are not limited to) the detection of timber pest activity: detection of allergens such as (but not limited to) Mould (Mildew): hydraulic, electrical and mechanical services: geotechnical and structural assessment: swimming pools and fire-safety compliance: asbestos detection: etc.
3.11 The report cannot include and accepts no responsibility for defects that are not present at the time of the inspection. These defects may only become apparent in, or as a result of (but not limited to) differing and sustained inclement weather. For example (but not limited to): moisture penetrations from ongoing rain and wind that are not present at the time of the inspection.
3.12 The assessment or detection of defects (including rising damp and leaks) which may be subject to the prevailing weather conditions: whether or not services have been used for some time prior to the inspection and whether this will affect the detection of leaks or other defects (e.g. In the case of shower enclosures the absence of any dampness at the time of the inspections does not necessarily mean that the enclosure will not leak)
3.13 Perth Property Inspections does not hold any responsibility for any repair of defects disclosed by this inspection report including damage that exists in areas that were inaccessible at the time of this inspection.
3.14 Any items outside the scope or limitations of this report will require a Special Purpose Report.
4. DISCLAIMER OF LIABILITIES
4.1 This report is made solely for the use and benefit of the client named in the report. No liability or responsibility whatsoever, in contract or tort is accepted to any third party that may rely on the report wholly or in part. Any third party acting or relying on the report in whole or in part does so at his or her own risk. This building inspection report has been commissioned by the client and is not transferable. No liability or responsibility is accepted whatsoever for any reliance placed upon this report wholly or in part by any third party. Any third parties acting or relying on this report do so at their own risk.
4.2 No liability is accepted whatsoever for failure of this building inspection report to detect or report any problems that may occur in areas that were inaccessible to the inspector at the time of this inspection. These areas are excluded from and do not form part of this report. Any such areas may be subject of an additional inspection and monetary cost.
4.3 No responsibility can be accepted for defects that are latent or otherwise not reasonably detected on a visual inspection without interference with or removal of any of the structure including fixtures or fittings within the building.
4.4 The report is only valid for the date of inspection and is based on the condition of the property at time of inspection.
4.5 Perth Property Inspections owns the copyright and all other intellectual property rights in connection with the preparation of this report. Unless Perth Property Inspections agrees otherwise the client may use the contents of the report only for the limited purpose to which the report was created. Perth Property Inspections has the right to on-sell the inspection report to 3rd parties subject to removal of any specific client details. All rights reserved.
5. TIMBER PEST INSPECTION
5.1 In the case of Pre-purchase Timber Pest Inspections and all Timber Pest Inspections the inspection will be in accord with the requirements of Australian Standard 4349.3-2010 Inspection of buildings Part 3: Timber pest inspections. The purpose of the inspection is to provide advice about the condition of the property concerning timber pest activity as outlined in the Scope of this Agreement.
5.2 All inspections (whether in accord with AS4349.3-2010 or AS3660.2-2000) will be a non-invasive visual inspection and will be limited to those areas and sections of the property to which Reasonable Access is both available and permitted on the date and time of Inspection.
5.3 The inspector may use a probe, screwdriver or other sounding device to tap and sound test some timbers and may use a sharp knife to carry out some ‘splinter testing’ on structural timbers in the sub-floor and/or roof void. Splinter testing will NOT be carried out where the inspection is being carried out for a Client who is a purchaser and not yet the owner of the property being inspected. The inspector may use a moisture meter to check moisture levels in walls that back onto wet areas such as showers etc. Other than these areas the moisture meter will NOT be used on any other surfaces except where the visual inspection indicates that there may be a need to further test an area.
5.4 The inspection will NOT involve any invasive inspection including cutting, breaking apart, dismantling, removing or moving objects including but not limited to: roofing, wall and ceiling sheeting, ducting, foliage, mouldings, debris, roof insulation, sarking, sisalation, window treatments, floor or wall coverings, sidings, fixtures, floors, pavers, furnishings, appliances or personal possessions.
5.5 The inspector CANNOT see or inspect inside walls, between floors, inside skillion roofing, inside the eaves, behind stored goods in cupboards, in other areas that are concealed or obstructed. Insulation in the roof void may conceal the ceiling timbers and make inspection of the area unsafe. The inspector will NOT dig, gouge, force or perform any other invasive procedures. An invasive inspection will not be performed unless a separate contract is entered into.
5.6 If the property to be inspected is occupied then You should be aware that furnishings or household items may be concealing evidence of timber pest activity and/or damage, which may only be revealed when the items are moved or removed. In some cases, the concealment may be deliberate. If You are the purchaser and not the owner of the property to be inspected then You should obtain a statement from the owner as to any timber pest activity or damage to the property known to them and what, if any treatments have been carried out to the property. It is important that you obtain copies of any paperwork issued and the details of any repairs carried out. Ideally the information obtained should be given to the inspector prior to the inspection being conducted.
5.7 In the case of Pre-purchase Timber Pest Inspections or Timber Pest Inspections in accord with AS4349.3-2010 the inspection and resulting report will be confined to reporting on the discovery or non-discovery of infestation and/or damage caused by subterranean and dampwood termites (white ants), borers of seasoned timber and wood decay fungi (rot) present on the date and time of the inspection.
5.8 The inspection will not cover any other pests and the Report will not comment on them. Dry wood termites (Family Kalotermitidae) and European House Borer (Hylotrupes Bujulus Linnaeus) will be excluded from the inspection.
5.9 The inspection will report any evidence of a termite treatment that happens to be found. Where evidence of a treatment is reported then the Client should assume that the treatment was applied as a curative and not as a preventative. You should obtain a statement from the owner as to any treatments that have been carried out to the property. It is important to obtain copies of any paperwork issued.
5.10 MOULD: Mildew and non-wood decay fungi are commonly known as Mould and is not considered a Timber Pest but may be an indicator of poor ventilation or the presence of termites, wood decay or water leaks. Mould and their spores may cause health problems or allergic reactions such as asthma and dermatitis in some people.
5.11 Nothing contained in the Report will imply that any inaccessible or partly inaccessible area(s) or section(s) of the property are not or have not been infested by timber pests. Accordingly, the Report will not guarantee that an infestation and/or damage does not exist in any inaccessible or partly inaccessible areas or sections of the property. Nor can it guarantee that future infestation of Timber Pests will not occur of be found.
5.12 If the property to be inspected is occupied then You must be aware that furnishings or household items may be concealing evidence of problems, which may only be revealed when the items are moved or removed. Where the Report says the property is occupied You agree to:
- Obtain a statement from the owner as to:
- Any timber pest activity and/or damage or other problems to the property known to them
- Timber repairs or other repairs
- Any other work carried out to the property including timber pest treatments
- Obtain copies of any paperwork issued and details of all work carried out
- Indemnify the Inspector from any loss incurred by You relating to the items listed in clause (a) above where no such statement is obtained.
5.13 The Report will not and cannot state the extent of any timber pest damage. If any evidence of Timber Pest activity and/or damage resulting from Timber Pest activity is reported either in the structure(s) or the grounds of the property, then You must assume that there may be some structural or concealed damage within the building(s). An invasive Timber Pest Inspection (for which a separate contract is required) should be carried out and You should arrange for a qualified person such as a Builder, Engineer or Architect to carry out a structural inspection and to determine the full extent of the damage and the extent of the repairs that may be required.
5.14 If Timber Pest activity and/or damage are found, within the structures of the grounds of the property, then damage may exist in concealed areas, ie – framing timbers. In this case and invasive inspection is strongly recommended. Damage may only be found when wall linings, cladding or insulation are removed to reveal previously concealed timber. You agree that neither We nor the individual conducting the Inspection is responsible or liable for the repair of any damage whether disclosed by the report or not.
6. CONSUMER COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE
6.1 In the event of any dispute or claim arising out of or relating to the Inspection or the Report, You must notify Us as soon as possible of the dispute or claim by email or mail. You must allow Us (which includes persons nominated by Us) to visit the property (which visit must occur within twenty-eight (28) days of your notification to Us) and give Us full access in order that We may fully investigate the complaint. You will be provided with a written response to your dispute or claim within twenty-eight (28) days of the date of the inspection.
6.2 If You are not satisfied with our response You must within twenty-one (21) days of Your receipt of Our written response refer the matter to a Mediator nominated by Us from the Institute of Arbitrators and Mediators of Australia. The cost of the Mediator will be borne equally by both parties or as agreed as part of the mediated settlement.
6.3 Should the dispute or claim not be resolved by mediation then the dispute or claim will proceed to arbitration. The Institute of Arbitrators and Mediators of Australia will appoint an Arbitrator who will hear and resolve the dispute. The arbitration, subject to any directions of the Arbitrator, will proceed in the following manner:
- The parties must submit all written submissions and evidence to the Arbitrator within twenty-one (21) days of the appointment of the Arbitrator; and
- The arbitration will be held within twenty-one (21) days of the Arbitrator receiving the written submissions.
6.4 The Arbitrator will make a decision determining the dispute or claim within twenty-one (21) of the final day of the arbitration. The Arbitrator may, as part of his/her determination, determine what costs, if any, each of the parties are to pay and the time by which the parties must be paid any settlement or costs.
6.5 The decision of the Arbitrator is final and binding on both parties. Should the Arbitrator order either party to pay any settlement amount or costs to the other party but not specify a time for payment then such payment shall be made within twenty-one (21) days of the order.
6.6 In the event You do not comply with the above Complaints Procedure and commence litigation against Us then You agree to fully indemnify Us against any awards, costs, legal fees and expenses incurred by Us in having your litigation set aside or adjourned to permit the foregoing Complaints Procedure to complete.
7. CLIENT ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
7.1 The client acknowledges that this inspection report is not intended to stringently scrutinise the structural elements but to visually assess them and form an opinion.
7.2 This report is not a warranty or an insurance policy against problems that might arise in the future.
7.3 The extent of the report is limited to the initial inspection agreement. Additional items outside the scope of the report, such as re-inspections, mediation, court appearance or expert witness testimonials, but not limited to these will be subject to an additional monetary cost.
7.4 A copy of the Standard can be purchased from Standards Australia.
7.5 Our engagement is confined to that of a Building Consultant and not a Building surveyor or a Structural Engineer.
7.6 The report remains the property of Perth Property Inspections until full payment is received or defaults are reclaimed at the clients cost.
7.7 The client acknowledges that in booking the inspection they agree to the Terms & Conditions listed, that the inspection will be carried out in accordance with this agreement and cancelations at short notice may incur a charge of up to 50% of the inspection fee.
8. TERMS OF TRADE
8.1 The terms of trade have been agreed to by virtue of the report being received by the customer, invoices and notifications sent prior to this report advised the customer that the Terms & Conditions are to be found on Perth Property Inspections website under “Terms & Conditions”, the conditions in them are final. If the customer has not received the notifying invoice or email stating the above, a verbal agreement has been had confirming and advising the same as no reports are released until this confirmation is in place.
8.2 Not reading them does not void their contents, if the customer is unable to read them or does not understand them, it is up to the customer to ensure they have been explained and to make every effort to understand the Terms & Conditions. The Terms & Conditions are always sent with the invoice and payment of the invoice is a sign of acceptance of the Terms & Conditions. Sometimes computers and the internet have issues, or some details may not be visible, so it is the customers responsibility to ask for a hard copy of the Terms & Conditions if for some reason they have not seen a copy of them.