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A Tale of 2 Renovations

This week we had the opportunity to do inspections on two renovated houses the 1st house is a 1970  build, and this has had a total makeover. The 2nd was constructed Between 1910 and 1920 and has had a full makeover as well. The quality of both of these renovations is excellent, and the standard of finish is high.

What we are going to compare the properties from the perspective of deciding to purchase. The 1970s is a brick veneer with a metal roof with an attached garage. The 2nd is a 1910 home that has been raised on steel peers and enclosed with a single garage underneath.

Meter box no sticker

Meter box no sticker

From the building inspectors report, 1970 home has a little bit of cracking visible on the external render and comes with an engineering certificate with the recommendation to have additional piers installed. Internally both houses have been renovated and lined with gyprock and outfitted with modern appliances. Turning to the 1970s home by searching through the Internet, we were able to find photos of the home pre-renovation. What we found was that in the 1st level of the home that had previously been just a cavernous area underneath the main body of the house there had been expansion joints visible in the slab had been poured infill. What this means is that without treatment, termites may gain entry into the building. There is no evidence that the slab are suitably waterproofed and have had their termite treatments installed. The slab shows signs of cracking and movement. No treatment sticker located.

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When we look at the Queensland style house we can see that there is evidence of waterproofing around the exterior and visibly see the termite protection in the form of a plastic blanket and besides there is a treatment certificate verifying the installation. Readily presented was all the documentation from the local councils and certifier again confirming the renovation completed in a compliant manner.

Internally both properties had a minor leak one in the kitchen of one home and one in the vanity of the 2nd these were easily repaired and would cause no long-term problem.

leak

Lastly, when we came to the roof void, the 1970s home had no roof access the manhole and been gyprock over and was not available for access. In contrast, the Queensland home had a purpose-built manhole installed in the ensuite, which allowed easy access to the roof space allowing a full and thorough investigation. Having this manhole in place allowed from electrical maintenance when necessary.

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Both of the properties were rated in “above average condition”. Given the opportunity, there is no reason why I would not buy either property myself. The quality of workmanship is high, quality of the renovation is high, and there is no apparent deviation from the building code of Australia for either property. In our reports, we would make the recommendations that all certification be viewed and copied especially for the 1970s property the main reason for this is that when you go to on-sell this property the incoming purchaser will require certification. If the renovation hasn’t been done in a compliant manner, then without that certification you have no recourse to the QBCC.

No access to structural timbers support under deck

No access to structural timbers support under deck

At the time of writing this, no documentation had been received with regards to the 1970s build and the purchase is continuing.