New book just released!

This book is an essential guide to house purchasers, sellers and real estate agents, with Stuart’s inside secrets to building and pest inspections, giving the reader the heads-up on what to look for when viewing their potential new home. Full of tips and guides on building defects and how to look for them.

The Inside Secrets to Building and Timber Pest Inspections buy on Amazon
The Inside Secrets to Building and Timber Pest Inspections book

Excerpt from Book…

Inspection of Timber cladding & Weatherboards

Timber frames with cement-based cladding or plywood, although very serviceable, brings its own serviceability issues. Brittle cement based products don’t stand up to impact damage and are not always easy to effect repairs, without it being noticeable. It usually involves full removal of the affected panel and subsequent reinstatement, so it’s important to be aware that a small area of damaged boarding may be more costly than first envisaged.

Inspection of Pole Supports

When inspecting a pole house, always pay attention to the surface condition of the support framework and whether it has been well maintained.

For steel supports, is there any sign of corrosion on any of the surfaces, junctures or where the frame has been jointed? Is there any corrosion at the base of the pole where it meets the ground? Is there any evidence of standing water around the framework bases? Even in a dry period, you can usually see a depression around the base of the pole where water may stand; this linked to a ring of corrosion around the base would indicate there might be a problem.

For timber supports you are looking for fungal bodies on the surface of the timber, and dark patches which may indicate fungal decay, holes, splits and depressions within the timber surfaces, especially at junctures, joints and along the top and outer edges of timbers which are exposed to the weather. There are a number of different types of fungus that destroy timber. Each fungus has its own unique features, but ultimately they all lead to the decomposition of the timber they are attaching. Wet rot is usually restricted to a particular area of timber which it is breaking down.

Corrosion of steel fixing bolts will generally be evident by brown or orange staining around and below fixings. In cases where suitable maintenance has not been maintained or the building environment allows for pooling/standing water at the base of the poles, corrosion can take place.

Water damage on block wall - property pre-purchase inspection

Water markings on the inner side of a lower ground wall. This is a clear indication that water penetration has or is taking place. Further investigation is required if damp is evident, as repair may be costly.

Corrosion of steel support poles - pre-purchase house inspection

In this photograph there is evidence of corrosion to the bottom of a steel post support, if left unattended it will corrode fully. This is compromising its load bearing capacity.

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The Inside Secrets to Building and Timber Pest Inspections buy on Amazon
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About the author

Stuart G Marsay BSc MRICS, is a specialist in Building Pathology, with over 27 years experience in diagnostics of building defects. Stuart has guided thousands of buyers through the acquisition and disposal, including development process, of both residential and commercial buildings, at all times striving to deliver service and results well beyond his client’s expectations. In an industry where experience really counts; Stuart not only holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Building Surveying and is a member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, holding two disciplines, Property Valuation and Building Surveying,  he has been in the industry for more than an impressive 30 years. Beginning his professional career as a carpenter and joiner, Stuart quickly rose through the ranks to become a site manager and beyond, and has project managed millions of dollars in both residential and commercial developments.

Stuart was a course coordinator and lecturer in Property Economics and Development at the University of the Sunshine Coast, from 2010 to 2018 where he wrote the course and lectured in both residential and commercial construction, Stuart has also taken part in residential workshops for the Australian Property institute (API) in his capacity as a senior property expert here on the Sunshine Coast. In his capacity as a presenter, Stuart discusses with Valuers the impact of Illegal building Works, within the residential property environment.

Prior to moving to the Sunshine Coast, some 10 years ago Stuart held the position of a equity director of one of the most successful and respected privately owned, award winning, Real Estate and Property Valuation/ Inspection groups in the North of England, where he managed the valuation and property inspection division.

About The Author Stuart Marsay

Latest Video

Watch & listen to the live interview between Stuart and 92.7 Mix FM. Stuart explains the basics of what he’ll look for when doing a pre-purchase property inspection of your home:

  • termites – presence of, or damage from prior infestation
  • damage to structural elements such as cracks & subsiding
  • construction of slab & framework
  • the condition of your foundations
  • evidence of drainage problems
  • evidence of subsiding (doors and windows opening properly)
  • presence of asbestos
  • fencing & patio issues
  • landscaping timber corrosion
  • driveways – evidence of cracking & subsistence
  • internal water issues (waterproofing, evidence of leaks)