COVID-19 Notice to Customers ~ All our employees are well-equipped and committed to the highest standards of cleanliness and safety for themselves and our valued customers. We are taking all necessary precautions and remain open and available to serve our community safely in accordance with all government and local regulations.

What Does A Bad Building Inspection Report Mean?

Building Inspection During Construction Stage

What Does A Bad Building Inspection Report Mean?

by | Nov 9, 2021

The Building Inspection Report

Buying a property in today’s markets is not an easy task, and many buyers consider numerous factors before making their final decision. While cost, location, aesthetics, neighbourhood, and social amenities are essential when purchasing a building, the most critical element is the pre-purchase building inspection report.

Building and pest reports are critical tools for buyers when looking to buy a property. It could save you thousands in long-term costs and help you decide which property has everything you need.

What Is A Building And Pest Report?

A building and pest report compiles the findings of a building inspection. It outlines the condition of a property, including minor issues and major structural defects. The inspection report can help you discover structural cracks, termite damage, and design defects. A building and pest report contains the following information:

Visual inspection report

Building inspection reports include details about the visual assessment of all building components, including outdoor, site, roof, interior, and exterior areas. This covers the inspection of the house’s plumbing, moisture, and electrical conditions. Building inspectors don’t perform intrusive or destructible inspections of any part of the building to ascertain its structural integrity.

During a building inspection, damage on the property, such as mould, cracks, or other issues is uncovered, photographed and the pictures inserted in the report. Furnishing used to intentionally hide faults cannot be reported, so you have to grant the building inspector full access to all areas to ensure that the inspection is thorough.

Maintenance report

When maintenance needs arise, the building inspector will make recommendations on the appropriate remedy. This may assist you in getting an idea of what kind of work is to be done to ensure that everything is working correctly. The building inspector will provide you with a detailed report on all defects, including minor ones so that you know the actual state of the property before deciding on whether or not to buy.

Moisture report

A moisture test is an integral part of any building report. It ensures that your home’s structural integrity and safety mechanisms are not compromised. Non-invasive instruments are used around high-risk areas to check for water levels and capture photos of any elevated readings so all parties can be transparent about it.

Inspection summary

The inspection summary recaps the entire report. This part of your building report gives potential buyers an idea of what condition the building is in relative to other buildings its age and some vital notes for future maintenance work such as regular gas checks or drain check-ups.

What Is A Bad Building Inspection Report?

A bad building inspection report is a report that identifies some grievous defects in the building that are capable of undermining the deal. While most properties have minor imperfections that can be overlooked, it’s essential to understand which ones are deal-breakers.

Structural damage or movement is a problem that should concern a potential home buyer. Water penetration and unhealthy mould levels may also be indicators of severe issues with your house’s foundation.

The safety and well-being of everyone living on a property matter. In severe cases, these issues present danger and have the potential to cause harm to those within them. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean you will have to abandon your purchase if you receive bad building or pest reports. The following is a list of red flags you should look out for in a building inspection report.


Aside from water, electricity remains the most significant essential amenity for man. Without electricity, you won’t be able to use any of your devices. The most common electrical problems in old homes are faulty circuit breakers and wires that have worn down from plugging in too many devices. Home inspectors specifically lookout for these issues to check if there are any potential damages.


Although plumbing does not fall under property inspection, it is always necessary to inspect the plumbing of a building you would like to buy. When leaks and drainage issues go unaddressed, building materials will begin to corrode or wear out faster. In a building inspection, attention is drawn to toilets, the kitchen, and other areas to identify problems.


The roof is an essential exterior structure of a building as it shields the interior from the elements. Maintained and repaired roofs are likely to have problem-free functioning tiles, gutters, and downpipes, leading to a more comfortable living environment.

During a roof inspection, the building inspectors look for cracks and corrosion. This includes looking for leaks and ensuring that everything else is in good condition, so you don’t have future problems with water damage.

Structural defects

During a building inspection, existing damage is examined with an extra emphasis on more prone areas. Structural defects are the most common and obvious problems you can see in buildings; they manifest as tiny cracks or peeling paint finishes but also significant decays that pose imminent risks to public safety.

Harmful substances

Asbestos, because of its non-flammable characteristics, was widely used in older houses. Lead is commonly found in paints and as plumbing materials and can harm people when not appropriately treated.

If you’re planning on buying an old house, you need to pay attention to the building inspection report to ensure that lead and other harmful substances are not there.

Termite infestation

Termites are pests that can damage structures of buildings made up of wood. If they’re not eradicated quite early, there will be significant structural damage in any room they’re in.

Termite infestations aren’t often easy to find; you need an expert to conduct a termite inspection and identify the areas in the property that are prone to these pests.

Therefore, if your building and pest inspection report shows that the house you want to buy is termite infested, you need to have a thorough plan on how to get rid of them as soon as you complete the purchase.

How Inspection Results Affect Purchase Decisions

After the home inspection has been completed, the buyer will go through the property inspection report and review its findings with a real estate agent. From the information listed in the report, the buyer and agent may decide the following:

Go on and buy the property

If the buyer and the real estate agent are satisfied with the condition of the building, the buyer will proceed to negotiate and conclude the transaction.

Ask that the building be repaired

If the inspection report shows severe structural defects and safety concerns, you will need to ask the seller to do repairs. The following are some of the items you should ask to be addressed:

  • Moisture intrusion problems in the basement and crawl space, mould, lead paint, and asbestos.
  • Damage to the roof, leaks, chimney, flashing, etc.
  • Improper or failing support system, cut or broken framing members, wood rot.
  • Inadequate heating or cooling systems, faulty thermostats, or damage to ductwork.
  • Leaking or loose toilet, lousy water heaters, leaks in plumbing systems, and waste piping issues.
  • Bad electrical wiring, improper wire connections, faulty breakers, and double-tapped breakers.

The seller is not bound to carry out cosmetic renovations or change things that have reached their end of life. After the buyer requests repairs, the seller will respond with either of these three options:

Agree to repair existing defects

Most sellers will agree to repair existing defects. Some don’t carry out a pre-listing building inspection and are not aware of these defects. They will likely accept the recommendation of the building inspection report so that they can secure the sale.

Negotiate the requested repairs

In this scenario, the seller may agree to repair some of the defects but not all. Some will also propose that the cost of the renovation be determined and subtracted from the asking price of the property.

However, not agreeing to repair the building may not be a good option and may not go well with the buyer’s financers. Some mortgage institutions will insist that the property be fixed before they can release funds for the purchase.

Refusal to repair

In some rare situations, the seller may not agree to either repair or negotiate the terms of the repairs. In such a situation, the buyer can exit the negotiation and demand a refund of the deposited amount.

Cancel the purchase contract

As the buyer, if you feel that the building falls short of your requirement after reviewing the building and pest inspection report, you can also decide to exit the negotiation and go check other properties.

Can A Home Fail A Building And Pest Inspection?

The home inspection process does not end with a pass or fail grade. If the findings of your report don’t meet buyer expectations, both parties can agree to fix the issues before further negotiation.

The challenge is when a defect is discovered that needs to be fixed, and the seller refuses to either fix the fault or factor the defect into the property’s price. In such a situation, the negotiation often ends in a deadlock.

Common Repairs In Building Inspection Reports

A home inspection report often indicates electrical, plumbing, and mechanical issues. The most common repairs include roof leaks, frayed wiring for your appliances, improper connections between components within a system (like water pipes), which could cause flooding if not fixed immediately), leaky faucets or fixtures on sinks that are not working correctly due to worn parts.

Hire An Experienced Hand For Your Inspection

A pre-purchase building and pest inspection is vital when purchasing any property. It offers you the ability to evaluate and determine the proper state of a building.

A home inspector checks every part of the building and comes up with a detailed dilapidation report that indicates the actual state of the building, and this will help you to decide whether to complete the transaction, ask for repairs or exit the negotiation.

Hiring a reputable and experienced hand for your property inspection is very important. A good home inspector will help you identify flaws that you would not have imagined and, by doing so, save you a lot of stress. The expert will also help you to make a good choice and save you thousands of dollars in the long run.



Buying a home?

Before you purchase, you need to be aware of what financial liabilities may be incurred. Our trained, experience and insured Adelaide building inspectors will be sure to assist you in this regard. Don’t leave your investments to chance




Related Articles

Ⓒ Jim's Building Inspections 2020. All rights reserved

Call Now