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What does a pre-purchase pest inspection look for?.

termite infestation melbourne

If you’re buying a property in Melbourne, it’s essential to book a pre-purchase building and pest inspection. An inspector will visit the property to conduct a visual inspection of the home and its surroundings to check for defects and damage. One major part of this inspection is the pest inspection.

What does a pest inspection look for? 

At Building and Pest Inspection Melbourne we conduct our pre-purchase pest inspection to Australian Standards 4349.3. This includes identifying any visible signs of timber pests, including live termites and borers. Our inspector will also note any conducive conditions to timber pest attack and critically any previous termite damage, which means there could be further damage hidden inside the walls. 

The inspector also reports on evidence that a termite management system has been previously installed at the property and recommends a termite management program so you can remain vigilant against future timber pest attack. 

Termites in Melbourne

If you are interested in buying property in Melbourne, it is essential to organise a building and pest report before you agree to unconditionally purchase the property under the REIV contract. It’s the only way to get peace of mind and can help you avoid unnecessary expenses. Termite damage can be extremely serious and may even threaten the structural integrity of the property you’re looking to buy.

Your local Victorian council is required to declare if the region is termite prone. Regulations now require new buildings (including extensions and alterations) built within termite declared areas to install a termite management system to manage and mitigate termite infestation. However, a termite management system installed post or pre-construction is not a guarantee against termite infestation.

But don’t let this fool you! Even if the property you are thinking of purchasing is not located within a termite declared area, it is still at risk of termite attack if conditions conducive to termite attack are present. 

The most common species of termites causing destruction to Melbourne property are the Coptotermes. Like all dampwood termites, Coptotermes are attracted to moist timber which our inspectors commonly find in wall cavities around areas such as leaking showers and windows. Coptotermes are a serious threat because they can forage for food for up to 50 metres radius from their nests and may create sub-nests inside the walls of our homes. They are also commonly found nesting in sub-floors in houses with poor drainage and blocked ventilation. 

Inspectors can visually check for signs of termite entry in the sub-floor stumps and piers, around the slab edge perimeter and weep holes. It is recommended to always keep a clear line of sight in these areas for visual termite detection, however most properties are obstructed by vegetation, stored items or ducting. 

termite inspection melbourne

To significantly aid our visual inspection, the most common tool used by our inspectors during a termite inspection is a moisture metre which measures the moisture content inside the wall. Where there is high moisture, a conducive condition, there could be termites present in the wall regardless of your local council’s termite declaration status. 

Evidence of visible termite damage could lead to the discovery of live termites hidden inside the wall cavities. When visible termite damage is found, further investigations are possible with the written authority from the seller to conduct an invasive inspection, which goes beyond the allowed visual inspection. However, when evidence of termites is found during our inspection, in most cases the buyer chooses to terminate the contract of sale. This is usually because the vendor does not agree to an invasive inspection, nor to reduce the selling price sufficiently to cover the expensive cost of termite damage repair. 

Where do inspectors look for termites and termite damage? 

Our building and pest inspectors conduct a thorough inspection of the property including the interior, exterior, roof void and sub-floor. 

Five signs of termites we look for include: 

  • Damaged timber including swollen floors or warped door jambs, uneven or soft wood or discolouration or dampness. 
  • Sound from inside the walls (sounds like a faint clicking noise). 
  • Termite wings.
  • Mould, mildew or rotting timber. 
  • Swarms of flying insects (termites).

Pre-purchase pest inspections Melbourne

At Building and Pest Inspection Melbourne we have a team of qualified and experienced licensed builders and dual qualified termite specialists with full indemnity insurance. They conduct all pest inspections to Australian Standards 4349.3. 

We’ve been operating since 2010 and have helped more than 5000 customers purchase their properties with the peace of mind knowing they are making a sound investment. Go ahead and check our reviews

We understand the urgency of pre-purchase building and pest inspections, that’s why from booking, we ensure it’s completed within 3 days, with a same-day comprehensive report. Sometimes we can even arrange same day inspection and report to meet the tightest of deadlines. 

Building and pest inspection reports

If you’re shopping around for a building and pest inspector we always recommend you ask for a sample report. Not all inspection companies offer the same level of service. 

At Building and Pest Inspection Melbourne our inspectors provide a comprehensive, detailed report on the same day of the inspection. They will list all major and minor defects, including information regarding any past, present or future termite damage that might occur due to conducive conditions. 

We encourage all customers to contact our friendly building and pest inspectors if you have any questions, they are always more than happy to explain their findings. 

How much does a building and pest inspection cost? 

  • $450* + GST for pre-auction building and pest inspections. 
  • $500* + GST for pre-purchase building and pest inspections. 

*For properties with up to 5 bedrooms. A $90 + GST travel charge applies if the property is in a suburb more than 50km from the CBD. 

Book a pre-purchase building and pest inspection in Melbourne

We make it easy to book an inspection. You can fill out an online form for a fast quote, or book an inspection directly from our website and we’ll contact the agent to arrange access – confirming all the details via email. Alternatively, contact our friendly team today on 0408 666 539. 

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