defects under the floor of a house

Hard to detect defects in houses

defects under the floor of a houseTo the untrained eye, houses can look very similar in appearance – four walls, a ceiling, a floor and a roof.  But to the house inspector, every little crack on the ceiling, or minor cosmetic defect on the wall could be an indication of bigger problems and require further scrutiny.  Water in subfloors, poorly erected roof structures, and malfunctioning appliances are three issues that the average home buyer is unlikely to identify without professional help.

Upon identification of such defects by a house inspector, buyers have a tendency to panic and if the issue is not well explained or potential ramifications clarified adequately, the pending sale can be jeopoardised (if the purchaser gets cold feet) for what might be a reasonably uncomplicated or inexpensive repair.

Here at Melbourne House Check, we pride ourselves on identifying all issues that may cause future problems in a particular dwelling, and conveying those findings to the client in a clear and simplified way.  Upon completion of each inspection, our experienced inspectors will have a conversation with the client prior to sending the written report, in order to simplify what can be a very complicated process and detailed written report.  During the conversation, we can also provide approximate costs of any repairs or rectification that will be required, so that the purchaser is prepared, and can budget for the future financial constraints.

At a Pre-Purchase Building and Pest Inspection that was carried out this week by one of our experienced inspectors in the Northern Suburbs of Melbourne, it was identified that the hot water service was not in operation.  The vendor insisted that it worked and that it had only been turned off because the property was vacant and deactivated in order to save power.  Upon closer inspection, the unit was found to be an aging, gravity fed, electrical, hot water unit located in the roof cavity.  Whilst the unit visually appeared to be in good condition for its age, the report noted that the tank may be near the end of its serviceable life and may need to be replaced in the near future.  The report also recommended further tests be carried out to ensure the unit functions as intended.  The client followed these recommendations and found that the unit was defective and required replacement.  The vendor then agreed to install a new hot water unit prior to settlement of the property.   Had these recommendations not been made, the client would have discovered this issue after moving into the property, and be up for several thousand dollars to install a new hot water unit before being able to take a warm shower.

The above issue is one of many things that can be overlooked when purchasing a property.  It is essential that an experienced inspector who is trained to identify such problems is engaged to ascertain any such problems and provide advice on the significance of the issue.  Melbourne House Check conduct inspections Melbourne-wide.

Please call now 1300 729 352, to book an inspection, obtain a quote or discuss any questions you might have with one of our inspectors. Further information can also be found at

Our other blog posts about house defects:

Water leaks under wet areas

Do you have a drainage problem?

Plumbing leaks subfloor 

Roof void defects in houses