Vancouver Condo Inspections
Your BC Licensed Home Inspector
Research Previous Repairs & Strata Meetings
We encourage you to read the minutes of strata council meetings as far back as you can obtain them. Highlight any references to water and moisture problems. We then find out how these problems were dealt with. Were further investigations carried out beyond identifying one specific problem? Were there any inspections carried out for the strata council or the property management company and are these reports available for perusal? If repairs were performed what assurance is there that they were properly done? Are there any planned major expenditures for the building?
Condo Designs and Building Structure Should Be Reviewed
Some buildings are more prone to leak than others. One of the most significant design features is the absence of adequate roof overhangs to protect the walls from rain. Exterior condo walls are especially prone to water contact as many level units often have little to no overhang protection from the elements. It’s important to check how the building will deal with water shedding in Vancouver’s traditionally wet climate.
Deck and balcony design are important. Decks and balconies which rely on small drains which are prone to plug, decks over living areas, “solid” railing designs, balconies which slope toward the building are more likely to result in leaks. Buildings with open walkways and stairwells are vulnerable to leakage and rot damage. Earth-filled planters in contact with the walls of ground floor units are potential problem areas.
Previous Repairs Can Be an Area of Concern
Is there visual evidence of exterior wall patching? Has caulking been installed in some areas and not in others? We check the wall penetrations on the walls most exposed to the weather. If the building has a stucco covered exterior have any water resistant coatings been applied subsequent to the original construction? The presence of any of these items will raise a red flag.
Observe & report on warranty details
Examine what items are covered and for how long. Is there a warranty against water penetration? How long does it last? What assurance is there that the builder will still be around to make the repairs? If the building is not new, what time, if any, is left on the warranty? If repairs have been carried out are they covered by a warranty?
Every Condo Should Be Subject To Professional Home Inspections Before Purchase
If you’re considering to buy a condo make your offer to purchase subject to a professional condo inspection. We’re a part of Home Inspectors Association BC HIABC. We will go through the condo unit and building with you. The process should take 2 to 3 hours and will include a detailed written report with digital photos upon request. Be aware that condo inspections are visual inspections and do not involve drilling or cutting holes. We will provide an opinion on the probability of problems based on the design features present. We may also identify previous repairs, but leaks may go undetected if there are no visible signs present. We’ll make recommendations to you as necessary based on our findings.