Our aim to provide the best possible service, we send out sample reports and our FAQ to our clients to assist them during their build process. We have outlined the most commonly asked questions below.
Building a new home can be stressful… let us assist by conducting an inspection..
This is not an exhaustive list, so if you have any questions or a copy of a sample report, please call our friendly Operations team for assistance and advice.
What is Practical Completion?
Practical Completion on a property can be reached once the following criteria are met, and they differ in each state.
QLD – Schedule 1b of the QBCC Act 1991 states that Practical Completion is: for a domestic building contract, means the day when the subject work is completed—
- in compliance with the contract, including all plans and specifications for the work and all statutory requirements applying to the work; and
- without any defects or omissions, other than minor defects or minor omissions that will not unreasonably affect occupation; and
- if the building owner claims there are minor defects or minor omissions—the building contractor gives the building owner a defects document for the minor defects or minor
New South Wales
NSW – Section 3B of the Home Building Act 1989 states: “Practical Completion” of the work, which is when the work is completed except for any omissions or defects that do not prevent the work from being reasonably capable of being used for its intended purpose.
VIC – Section 42 of the Domestic Building Contracts Act 1995 states: When work
is to be considered to have been completed
A builder must not demand final payment under a major domestic building contract until—
- the work carried out under the contract has been completed in accordance
with the plans and specifications set out in the contract; and
- the building owner is given either—
(i) a copy of the occupancy permit under the Building Act 1993 , if the building permit for the work carried out under the contract requires the issue of an occupancy permit; or
(ii) in any other case, a copy of the certificate of final inspection.
What is the PC/ Handover Inspection process?
Roughly, two weeks prior to the practical completion date, the Builder will send you a letter advising of the date and time of your handover. In that letter, in some cases the Builder will advise you that you are entitled to attend the inspection and/or engage an independent building inspector to oversee the handover inspection on your behalf. Whether or not the builder does advise you of this you are within your rights under the contract to engage an Independent qualified company to conduct this inspection. Most of the State Regulators such as the QBCC and NSW Office of Fair Trading even recommend on their websites that you do engage a Building Inspector/Consultant to carry out this inspection.
Once K-Spec is engaged to conduct your handover inspection, we will liaise with the Builder to confirm the date and time of the inspection. The inspector will meet with the building supervisor onsite.
The Inspector will thoroughly inspect the property and immediately provide the Supervisor with a Builders Defect list.
A full report with photographic evidence will be sent to you within 24 hours.
Our reports are thorough, easy to understand and will give you peace of mind. A handover report done by K-Spec Building Consultants is of the highest quality and will be a great step in assuring you that your biggest and most valued asset have been completed with the quality and workmanship that the industry demands. Saving you heartache, disappointment and in some circumstances future financial strain.
What qualification does an inspector need to have to carry out a handover inspection?
K-Spec Building Consultants Inspectors and Consultants all hold relevant Builders or trade licenses. We also hold licenses in all states that we service. This truly does set us apart from most of our competitors as you have the peace of mind in knowing you have a qualified professional inspecting your property.
In QLD particularly, any persons providing professional building advice is required to hold a Builders or trade qualified licence (as a minimum) issued by the QBCC. This advice can only be given under the scope of licence that person holds. For example, a Carpenter can only give advice on carpentry work and a Builder can provide advice on all facets of building work with the exception of occupational trades such Electrical or Plumbing works.
Any persons who are not licensed or provide advice OUTSIDE their licence scope or provides building advice can be found to be in breach of the current QLD legislation.
K-Spec Building Consultants are also members of the Institute of Building Consultants (IBC), Master Builders Queensland and HIA.
Do I need to arrange access to the property with the Builder?
Access to property can be provided by the client, agent or builder. Once we confirm the inspection booking, our operations team will liase with all parties for access.
My Builder will not allow access to the site for the Inspection.
It is your contractual/ legal right to have a representative onsite to conduct a building inspection on the property. If your Builder refuses to provide access to us or any other representative we recommend you discuss this matter directly with them.
Fixing Items on a defects list
Once the builder receives the defect list, they will organise the required trades to rectify the items noted on our report.
Can I be present during the inspection?
Yes, we encourage you to be onsite during the inspection. Please advise our office when booking the inspection.
I want to add items to your defect list.
We encourage you to let us know if there is any questions, concerns or issues you have with your build and we are happy to provide advice and assistance.
If you have items that you have noted, and would like to discuss this please let our office know in advance and we will relay this information to your inspector.
If you have additional items you wish to add to our list, we recommend that you email your list to us so we can review them and have the inspector check your items onsite. If he deems this to be a defect, this will be included in the list. However, if he deems that the item/s are within the standards and tolerances these items will not be noted.
If you have additional items outside our list, we recommend that you bring this to your builder’s attention immediately.
Can I speak to the inspector/consultant?
Yes, of course. If you are onsite, our inspectors/consultants will explain their findings to you. If you are unable to attend, they will be available to answer any questions over the phone or by email.
What are the costs associated with a handover inspection?
The cost is minimal; it is only a fraction of the investment. The inspection, report and advice from the inspector/consultant will give you peace of mind that your property is built to meet the Australian Standard and to ensure that the Builder rectifies any defects found.
What happens if my property is not Practically Complete?
In some cases, the property has not yet reached PC and there are a number of reasons for this:
- The property has outstanding items that affects occupancy such as showerscreens not installed, water or power not connected etc
- Appliances not installed at the time of inspection
- Major defects noted affecting occupany
- Building and contractual disputes between owner and builder affecting the completion of the property
If your property is deemed to be ‘NOT’ practically complete, we encourage you to discuss this matter direct with your builder.
Can I have the same Inspector to do all my Inspections?
All our Inspectors are fully trained and have years of Building and Construction experience. Each Inspector will bring to the inspection their own unique style and experiences. But rest assured your property will be inspected thoroughly each and every time.
Sometimes having a different Inspector means that your property will be viewed in a different light each and every time.
What is the turnaround time for inspection and reports?
Turnaround time for bookings is 7-10 workings days.
Turnaround time for reports is 24 hours once payment is recieved.
Do I need a re inspection done on my property?
A 2nd / reinspection is conducted once the Builder has deemed that all items are completed. This inspection is carried out to ensure that:
- all items noted on the original report are complete
- defects completed to the Australian Standards, Manufacturers recommendations and or good building practice
- no new defects are noted.
I am buying an existing home, what inspections do I need?
If you are purchasing an existing property and it is subject to sale you will need a PRE PURCHASE BUILDING INSPECTION.
We can arrange the Building, Pest Inspection and Pool Inspections for you at the same / similar time.
You will have the benefit of having 3 qualified inspectors overseeing your property for you.
What qualification does an Inspector need to have to carry out a Pre-Purchase Building and Pest inspections?
Inspectors (Building and Pest) are required to hold a Queensland Building & Construction Commission (QBCC) issued Residential Builders Licence and a Timber Pest Management Licence for them to qualify to inspect your property.
My house has a pool, what inspection or compliance do I need?
We can conduct a Pool Safety Inspection for you. Once the Inspector has deemed your Pool to be complaint, a copy of the compliance certificate will be issued.
If he notes any defects or non compliance then a non complaint report will issued to you. Once the non complaint defects are rectified, we will conduct a re inspection of the items and will issue you with a compliance certificate.
What do the Inspectors look for during these inspections?
A Pre-Purchase Building Inspection is a visual inspection of the property only. The inspection and report will comply with the requirements of AS4349.1 Inspection of Building, Pre-Purchase Inspections & Residential Buildings.
We see through any cosmetic improvements covering up faults that might otherwise be missed by an untrained eye and being made aware of any major issues will provide you with an overall assessment of the property so you can make an informed decision.
Do you have a checklist I can look at?
Every home inspected is different and we treat each new property we inspect as our own.
Our Inspectors are trained to inspect the property in a method that elimiates the need to have a ‘listed’ checklist to conduct the inspections.
Our Inspectors are onsite everyday inspecting new and existing properties. They are proficient what they do and they know what to look for and what is considered to be defective.
Fig 1 Shows missing grout on floor tiles in dining room
Would you have found this? Our inspector did…