The decision to buy a house is a big one. It’s important that you research before you sign or make the contract conditional upon a satisfactory building and pest report (B & P) to ensure the house does not have major structural defects and is not infested with unwanted pests.
A building report should highlight areas of concern and a pest inspection lets you know whether or not unwanted guests have laid claim to your new home.
If you haven’t obtained a B & P report before you sign a contract, then the contract should contain a building and pest clause. This clause allows the buyer to obtain a written B & P report and provides the buyer the right to terminate the contract if the report is not satisfactory (i.e. there are creepy crawlies that have been found or major structural defects).
The wording of the B & P special condition is important as weak, ambiguous or vague wording may not entitle a buyer to terminate.
If the B & P report is unfavourable, there are other options to the buyer in addition to terminating the contract. An issue on a building or pest inspection can give a buyer leverage to have the purchase price lowered or repairs made before settlement.
The key to remember when purchasing a home is do your due diligence and have a building and pest inspection performed. This provides you the best leverage to either negotiate further or to end the contract. You don’t want your dream home or investment purchase to turn into a nightmare or a money pit.