May 22, 2017 10:47 pm
Check out vba (Victorian builders association) website before you employ an independent building inspector. Limited is domestic and unlimited is domestic and industrial. Don't waste your money on unregistered building inspectors.
Re: Independent building inspector2
Sep 11, 2017 8:27 pm
The VBA advice on building inspectors (limited to domestic only) refers to certifying building inspectors, who are hired by relevant building surveyors to inspect building works usually at 4 stages of a house construction.
The term building inspector is misused to mean building consultant virtually by everyone... even by the consultants themselves. This goes right back to when Sensis allowed both to be headings in the yellow pages... and building inspectors (still wrong because it confused the difference between the two occupations) got the nod, because it sounds more appropriate and had 20 times the phone calls.
When you want a building consultant (call them building inspectors if you must), the main thing is to first find out if they are an employee of a company... because if so, the O H & S rules for workers compensation insurance (which only apply to employees and bosses of companies), preclude those employees and bosses from getting onto your roof, walking around inside your roof, because of fall heights exceeding 2 metres. They will also most likely not get under your house because of the fact that the code AS 4349.1 for the Inspection of Buildings (residential) says under Table 3.2... that "Sub-floor areas sprayed with chemicals should not be inspected unless it is safe to do so"... and most houses use deterrent sprays to deter termites... so for a timber floor, it is highly likely today that your house will be sprayed with Biflex of similar insecticide sufficient to warrant people going under the house not to touch the soil with their skin. They are poisons as are bug bombs. All termite sprays used prior to 1995 have been banned from further use as has one since called Chlorpyrifos (Durzban).
So for a pre-purchase inspection or a completion stage inspection of your new home, the odds are that the employee building consultant will inspect far less than a sole trader building consultant... so start there I strongly advise and ask the obvious questions do they get in and on the roof and under the house... and ask the clearance under the house required because there is nothing mentioned in the current code and 400 mm in the previous version of the code is usually not enough.
Then you want to ask about experience, price, time on site, have they a white card, are they insured for the actual inspection (professional indemnity insurance) and so on. Forget the equipment they use and concentrate on are they a sole trader or less than 5% of the structure will be inspected up close.
Good luck because many are not experts at all, particularly on structure an new homes under warranty.
Re: Independent building inspector3
Sep 11, 2017 9:25 pm
Do you really comprehend what you are saying?
Are you really suggesting that sole trader inspectors are stupid enough to ignore personal safety: broken asbestos under houses, cancer causing chemicals (Aldrin), crawl into undersized spaces where they have no hope of being rescued by paramedics if they get into trouble, crawl into roof spaces when it may be unsafe to do so, walk on the roof when there is a fall danger or they may break brittle tiles, or are you just talking about yourself?
Last time I checked, OH&S is there for good reasons and it is the law, are you really suggesting to ignore the law?
So what are the risks for the owner employing sole trader that is stupid enough to ignore personal safety? In the event of accident or injury there may be a lawsuit and the owner may lose the shirt of his back.
Are you really suggesting that inspectors other than sole traders are lazy and just use OH&S as excuse not to try?
I beg to differ, it's a business and no one wants unhappy customer and most inspectors sole traders or not will do their best to give the best inspection possible within safe inspection limitations
Forget the equipment they use? Yes because you never the the fortitude to invest in what you are doing.
I happen to think that in any profession equipment is a must and the measure of the professional is the quality of his equipment. So by all means, ask about it.
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Re: Independent building inspector4
Sep 12, 2017 1:36 am
Look at Worksafe if you do not believe me, but last time I looked Worksafe stated the workers compensation insurance was not an option for sole traders, but was mandatory for employees (I think so that they cannot be exploited by their bosses).
Perhaps the time has come to admit that an employee is placed at a great disadvantage to a careful reasonably fit sole trader because of the law.
If a building consultant is well trained and knowledgeable he / she will know when it is unsafe. but this does not preclude him from walking around carefully on and in most roofs... hence the advice on sole traders being more likely to inspect up close to the structural elements of a house.
Admittedly under houses can be toxic, but the risk of coming to harm in driving a car is far higher. Agreed... protective gear is advisable under many a house, particularly where dieldrin, aldrin, heptachlor, chlordane, or chlorpyrifos were used.
I think we should keep those wanting a pre-purchase inspection informed of the short-comings associated with the industry, so that they can make an informed choice. They don't want excuses, they want inspection of as much as is reasonably possible to inspect by someone with adequate building science knowledge. There is often little need for expensive equipment when access is reasonably possible.
I really think it is employers who may need to look at this from the point of view of the buyers of a once in a lifetime purchase dependent on the report that a building consultant is going to write. And most of the buyers want as much of the structure inspected sufficiently to find anything wrong that is reasonably accessible to a reasonably fit person who is not just going to walk around the house and pontificate. Getting to critical points raises the depth of knowledge gained is a good motto to have.
Employees are denied this depth of knowledge.
An employee with all the tools and equipment available (but on the ground) is not going to come close to a sole trader carefully getting to the out-of vertical roof trusses or the lack of bracing or the grossly inadequately fixed roof battens and roof tiles or the lack of props around the corner from the ceiling hatch with whatever equipment he needs to perform his task well.
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