There has been an explosion of Home Renovation programmes on television of recent times showing ordinary people undertaking glamorous, dramatic and quite often substantial improvements to their homes.
Making these programmes entertaining means they focus on the creative experience of creating a dream home, and tend to ignore the “boring” stuff like building to Australian standards, building codes and council requirements, not to mention nasty stuff like removing lead based paints and dealing with asbestos.
As building inspectors, Houspect are finding many houses that have had a quick renovation by unskilled but devoted owners who in their haste to move on to the next project has resulted in them ignoring potential and significant problems.
Sometimes these problems can be easily identified. A simple bounce test can identify a new floor or deck that is not supported correctly or simply having to duck your head when walking under a new verandah roof shows the Australian standards have not been followed.
However, occasionally problems can be more challenging to find. Recently we inspected a property where the owner had completed his own sewage connection and hid the inspection point and plumbing under the carpet in his walk in robe. Unfortunately this renovator found out the perils of conducting his own plumbing when he came home to find the floors of his self made palace under 7cm of his neighbor’s sewage.
If you think you’re being asked to market a home handy man renovation it may be an idea to check that any structural, plumbing or electrical work has the correct certificates and where necessary council approval has been sort. It may save you getting egg on your face – or something worse on your shoes!