If you are buying a home, you would need a building and pest inspection, however when a strata or company title is involved, like in the case of an apartment, unit or villa, you will require different types of reports, a strata inspection report and a building inspection report.
These are two very specific types of inspections that examine the different features of strata properties and can reveal different types of details. Strata inspections involve a different set of criteria than a building inspection. The strata inspection starts with a search of the strata plan. The inspector will examine the strata plan for the whole complex as well as certain aspects of the apartment or unit of interest. This evaluation will include looking at the financials of the strata plan, previous minutes of annual general meetings, strata manager and owner’s committee records, entitlements and voting rights. Items of interest will be extracted from these records such as building management, maintenance issues and history, major expenditure, special levies and the 10-year maintenance plan. All these details are then compiled into the strata inspection report. A strata inspection report is important because the apartment or unit forms a part of the group of residences or complex. There are rules & regulations governing the management and maintenance of the property as a whole.
The strata inspection report is not a physical inspection of the apartment or unit at the building location. This is where a building inspection is required. Apartments are part of a larger building and while the apartment itself might be in great repair, the building could have some problems that might prove troubling later. Most apartment buyers hesitate to arrange a building inspection thinking the strata records will have all the issues or it’s too much trouble and expense. However, we find strata records don’t reflect what the condition of the property is now. A building inspection is for defects within the apartment it also included accessible common areas and as a lot holder these areas could be your largest liability.
Building Inspection is an evaluation of the apartment or unit and accessible common areas of the complex. A building inspection will discover defects, maintenance, safety and compliance issues at the property. Quite often these items identified in this building inspection are not noted in a strata report. Including a building inspection with the strata report will provide a more complete evaluation to protect your investment and enable an informed decision.
STRATA INSPECTION AND HOUSE INSPECTION
If you are buying a house, you would need a building and pest inspection report. On the other hand, if you invest in a unit, you will require a strata inspection report. These are two particular types of inspections that examine the different features of these properties and can reveal different types of details. Let’s take a look at what the differences between a house inspection and a strata inspection are:
A unit inspection involves a different set of criteria than a house inspection. Aside from the physical condition of that unit, the inspector will also examine the strata agreement and specific aspects of the building in which the unit exists. Some of the details that will be looked at in a strata inspection include:
- The exterior of the unit
- Interior of the unit space
- Whether the strata scheme complies with asbestos & fire rules
- Insurance for the building
- Other special levies
- Entitlements and voting rights
- Building reports
- Major expenditures & major proposed expenditures
- Quarterly strata fees
- Whether or not the structure is harmonious
A strata inspection will also look at all the copies of the minutes from meetings such as the owners’ corporation AGM etc. A strata inspection report is essential because the apartment unit you’re purchasing doesn’t exist in isolation. It’s subject to all the rules & regulations governing the property in which it exists.
While a house inspection report and a strata inspection report examine different details, both are crucial for a property buyer. The few hundred dollars that you spend on getting these inspections done can provide you peace of mind and save you a significant amount of money in the long term.
Frequently Asked Questions
Strata reports cost between $300 and $495 and generally take 3 days to be delivered via email. The more expensive options include an opinion as to the financial condition and even legal position of the strata plan.
A strata report shows the financial position of the strata plan. It included historical information on building maintenance, special levies, disputes, and copies of the latest AGM minutes, 10-year maintenance budget and any future special levies planed.
A strata report should include historical information on building maintenance, special levies, disputes, and copies of the latest AGM minutes, 10-year maintenance budget and any future special levies planed.