Home Inspection News – Issue 16

House Prices March 2018

Over the whole of New Zealand house prices increased in 13 out of the 16 regions compared to March 2017. The only regions not to experience an increase were Northland, Auckland and Taranaki. The result was for New Zealand to reach a new record median house price of $560,000 and 3 regions achieved new record prices.

The 3 regions were Gisborne, up 17.9% to $330,000, Hawkes Bay was up 11.7% to $445,000 – incidentally that is the 3rd new record in a row and Wellington up 10% to $583,000. Although Auckland prices were not up on March 2017 (which was a record month) they did increase from last month by a solid 2.9%.

The number of sales across the country was down by almost 10% compared to March 2017 (Auckland down 12%). The time taken for a property to sell increased by 1 day to 34 days in March compared to March 2017.

inspecting under the house for insulation

More about Asbestos in Houses 

On the 4th of April 2018 the Health & Safety at work (Asbestos) Regulations 2016 came into force. This effects every rental property in New Zealand.

If you are a landlord your rental property is deemed to be a place of work. If you have any work done on the property then you are required to have identified any Asbestos or Asbestos containing material (ACM) on the property.

There must also be in place a written Asbestos management plan if you know or ought to have known that there is a risk of Asbestos. You cannot assume no Asbestos is present.

The Asbestos management plan must be reviewed at least every 5 years. This plan must be disclosed to people who work on the property such as a plumber or electrician.

Properties built before 1990 will very probably have ACM used in their construction. The well known fibre cement used as weatherboards (eg Hardiplank) for soffit lining and so on used Asbestos fibre in their manufacture before the use of Asbestos was prohibited. For more information see:

Asbestos

Pre purchase home inspection

What is Happening Under Your Floor?

If you have a house built on piles (as opposed to a concrete slab floor) there is often a crawl space under the floor to allow for access to check / repair problems under the house.

There are several things to check on a regular basis under your house. A house inspection by an A Buyer’s Choice Home Inspector will include checking:

  1. The condition of the floor and joists for stability, rot and insects (eg Borer) damage.
  2. The condition of the pipes and pile / bearer ties – with respect to stability.
  3. The presence of a DPC – damp proof course between pile / bearers to prevent moisture transmission.
  4. The presence of drainage – to ensure outside water is not running under the house which would produce dampness. Plastic sheeting to cover bare soil is worth while to prevent moisture from the soil transmitting to the floor.
  5. Crawl space ventilation – are there enough ventilation grills to allow sufficient air movement to keep the floor dry?
  6. Check the plumbing system for leaks.
  7. Check the electrical wiring for any cable damage and ensure proper cable support.
  8. Underfloor insulation – there needs to be underfloor insulation for accessible floors on all rental property by law by the 1st of July 2019. The insulation has to be to a minimum rating of R 1.3.

Have A Buyer’s Choice Home Inspections conduct a full house maintenance inspection. Early detection of problems can save a lot of money. Call 0800 86 36 36.