Moving is one of the most stressful things many of us do in our lifetime, but add to that the fact that you may also be purchasing the property you’re moving into, and the stakes are high! Whether it’s your first home, or the fifth you’ve owned, purchasing a property is a significant investment and one that you want to go into with ample information and your eyes open.
Dotting the ‘i’s and crossing the ‘t’s
If you’re currently looking to buy a home, it has likely been suggested that you get a pre-purchase inspection. Just as you’d be unlikely to buy a car without a mechanic giving it their ‘seal of approval’, a building inspection does a similar thing. Think of it as a sort of total health check for a home.
A building inspection is one of the most common conditions included in a Sale and Purchase Agreement, so don’t be afraid to assert your right to doing one. Consumer NZ caution that you should make sure any building inspection report is addressed to all those who will be relying on its accuracy; that way you have comeback later that you wouldn’t have if you were relying on someone else’s copy.
So what does a pre-purchase inspection provide?
A thorough weather tightness building inspection makes sure that all aspects of a home are weathertight, safe, healthy, energy-efficient and durable, both from external moisture penetration and internal moisture leakage. As well as looking at how a home is now, and uncovering potential issues that you haven’t identified, a comprehensive building report will also map out the upcoming maintenance needs of a property, so you know what you might need to factor into your budget during your first few years of home ownership.
From a future-proofing point of view, knowing about potential issues while they are still small can also help you manage maintenance or repair costs, as problems that are left untreated (or not known about) can get worse and their costs to remedy often escalate. This can save you, potentially, hundreds of thousands of dollars and help you avoid unexpected significant financial outlays down the track.
Why get a pre-purchase inspection done?
A pre-purchase weathertightness building inspection provides total transparency and peace of mind ahead of your purchase. It’s an important part of managing risk; the investment of a few hundred dollars is worth it to be able to go into the much bigger investment you’re about to make well-informed.
Your inspection’s use in negotiations
With fewer homes now going to auction in New Zealand, chances are higher that you’ll have a chance to negotiate with a seller (or vendor) on price – and a building inspection is one of your best bargaining tools. Despite what a property looks like, or how much you fall in love with it on first sight, no home is perfect – so most comprehensive weather tightness building inspections turn up something that you are able to negotiate on.
Engage with an inspector who you trust; one who will not only provide an in-depth look at the property but will produce a report that is transparent and easy to understand. A good building inspector will also make themselves available, after sending through the report, to answer any additional questions that you have – so make sure that you clearly understand all of the issues uncovered, and what they really mean before you go ahead with purchasing the property.