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Uncovering structural defects in your home. Why you need a pre purchase building inspection in Perth

How likely is it that your Perth home contains a number of minor defects? Based on our observations over the years, minor defects are commonly found in most properties and may include minor corrosion, cracking, weathering, general deterioration, unevenness, and physical damage to materials and finishes, such fences and down pipes. However, when purchasing a home, it is critical that structural defects or major defects are clearly identified.

But first, let's clear up what is a structural defect?

A structural defect is defined in AS4349 as a "fault or deviation from the intended structural performance of a building element." In the context pre purchase building inspections and the reporting requirements, structural defects have to be rectified to avoid the development of unsafe conditions, and thus any defect that is a safety hazard has to be reported as a major defect. Here we have some examples of structural defects encountered during a roof inspection:

Roof struts are needed in the roof frame to transfer the loads to walls or beam. In this case the strut does not have any fixings at the ridge beam connection.

Steel straps are used in most roofs to tie-down various roof members. In this example, the nail has completely missed the rafter.

This is another example where the fixings that should have connected the rafter to the underpurlin are inadequate.

Another example of poor construction.

Roof batten not connected to rafter.

Example of valley rafter connection which is inadequate.

Example of collar ties which are inadequate.

Another example of a ridge strut which does not have fixings at the top.

The number of minor defects for a roof such as this is very concerning. If a wind event was to occur that would approach the ultimate design capacity, it is likely that this roof would not withstand the loading placing a safety risk to people and property. There are too many inadequate connections and this could be classified as a major structural defect.

At Rotaru Building Consultants (RBC) our structural engineers have significant expertise in the design, engineering and construction of residential buildings. We can also provide structural engineering inspection of all types of residential structures in Perth and provide appropriate engineering recommendations if remediation is needed.

Purchasing a new home or investment property? We can also assist with pre-purchase structural inspections in Perth. Our considerable expertise regarding the structural engineering of other structures such as retaining walls, sheds and patios as well as our skills in failure analysis ensures these structures are thoroughly assessed during our pre-purchase structural inspections as well.

In the event the property you are looking to buy has unauthorised structures such as retaining walls, screen walls, patios, carports or sheds, we can undertake the necessary engineering assessment and assist with obtaining retrospective structural engineering approval from the local council.

Our mission is to provide exceptional building consulting services, cost effective structural engineering solutions together with an excellent customer experience. If you have any questions about a pre purchase structural and timber pest inspection in Perth, get in touch with us to discuss your requirements and to obtain a free quote today.

Rotaru Building Consultants

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