If you’re planning to buy at an auction or tender then you will need to have any reports and checks done before the sale date, because you cannot renege on an offer once it’s been made.
If you’re buying a property via negotiation, then will have the option to make these checks a condition of the sale. This means if the building fails a check, you can legally back out of the agreement.
This check is done by a lawyer to establish:
- The real owner of the property
- Interests of other parties in a property (e.g. mortgages)
- The type of title (freehold, company shared, unit title, leasehold or cross lease)
- Boundaries and easements
This report outlines the information about the property from the local council’s point of view.
- Previously issued building consents (so you’ll know if all work is consented)
- Zoning (for schools, commercial buildings etc)
- Restrictions in place (building height restrictions, protected trees etc)
- Upcoming local developments in area (which may increase or reduce the value of a property)
- Land history (if it’s prone to erosion, flooding or was formerly a landfill site etc)
- Yearly rates (and outstanding rates)
Building Inspection Report
A pre-purchase building inspection will give you an understanding of any current or potential problems with the building. Having this inspection done means you can make an educated decision about how much you’re willing to pay for the property, and if the future problems it may come with are worth the hassle.
Building inspections look at the interior and exterior of a building, as well as its foundations, roof and everything in between. The report covers everything from cracks and leaks, to structural issues and bad construction. The reports also usually identify the seriousness of any problems and whether they require urgent fixes or are less serious.
Building inspections are not regulated and can be carried out by anyone. However because of the technical skills required we recommend using a qualified builder, building surveyor or a civil/structural engineer with a background in residential buildings. We also recommend making sure their public liability and private indemnity insurance is up to date, to protect you financially if there are any damages or legal costs as a result of the inspection.
Your bank may need you to provide a registered property valuation of a property before they agree to grant you a mortgage. These valuations provide and independent assessment on the true market value of a building and land it comes with. The banks use the registered value in their calculations, when they are deciding how much they are willing to lend you.
A registered value takes into account the full value of a property and its land based on the size, condition and local market. This type of valuation can only be done by someone who is a registered property valuer.