Sydney’s property market is known for its high demand and high prices. However, the quality of the buildings is often overlooked, leading to a prevalence of building defects in apartments. According to a recent report, more than one in four apartment blocks in Sydney built in the decade to 2017 likely have defects, with serious defects costing an average of $331,829 per building to fix.
Common building defects in Sydney include water leaks, internal and external wall cracking, exterior water penetration, guttering problems, defective roof coverings, plumbing faults, and tiling related defects. Unfortunately, these defects are often hidden from potential buyers, making it difficult for them to know whether the apartment they are buying is of good quality. As a result, many buyers are left with costly repairs and maintenance issues down the line.
Understanding building defects is crucial for anyone looking to purchase an apartment in Sydney. It’s important to know what to look for and what questions to ask before making a purchase. In this article, we will explore the most common building defects in Sydney, their causes, and how to prevent and repair them. We will also discuss the legal aspects and rights of buyers and owners in relation to building defects.
- Building defects are common in Sydney’s apartment market, with serious defects costing an average of $331,829 per building to fix.
- Common building defects in Sydney include water leaks, wall cracking, and plumbing faults.
- It’s crucial for buyers to understand building defects, their causes, and how to prevent and repair them to avoid costly repairs and maintenance issues down the line.
Understanding Building Defects
Building defects are a common issue in Sydney’s real estate market. They can range from minor cosmetic issues to major structural problems that can compromise the safety of the building’s occupants. In this section, we will provide an overview of building defects, their definition, and the most common types of building defects found in Sydney.
Definition of Building Defects
A building defect is a fault or deviation from the intended condition of a material, assembly, or component that affects the performance, function, or appearance of a building. According to the Australian Glossary of Building Terms, a building defect is work that is in breach of the contract by failing to maintain a specified standard or quality or is a breach of any implied warranty.
Building defects can occur due to various reasons, including poor workmanship, design errors, inadequate materials, and environmental factors. They can affect different parts of the building, including the structure, roof, walls, floors, windows, doors, and plumbing systems.
Types of Building Defects
Building defects can be classified into various types based on their nature and severity. The most common types of building defects found in Sydney include:
- Structural Defects: These are defects that affect the structural integrity of the building, such as cracks in the foundation, walls, or roof, sagging floors, and unstable foundations.
- Water Penetration: Water penetration is a common issue in buildings, especially in Sydney’s humid climate. It can lead to mold growth, dampness, and damage to the building’s structure and finishes.
- Electrical Defects: Electrical defects can range from minor issues such as faulty switches and outlets to major problems such as overloaded circuits and faulty wiring that can cause fires.
- Plumbing Defects: Plumbing defects can lead to leaks, blockages, and water damage to the building’s structure and finishes.
- Fire Safety Defects: Fire safety defects can compromise the safety of the building’s occupants, such as missing or faulty smoke detectors, inadequate fire exits, and faulty fire suppression systems.
In summary, building defects can have serious consequences for the safety, performance, and value of a building. It is essential to identify and address them promptly to prevent further damage and ensure the safety of the building’s occupants.
Common Building Defects in Sydney
Sydney’s apartment buildings are riddled with building defects. According to recent research, just over half of Sydney’s apartments had at least one type of defect, while more than one in four had at least three different defects. It is virtually impossible for buyers to know whether the apartment they are buying is of good quality. Here are some of the most common building defects in Sydney.
Cracking and Movement
Cracking and movement in buildings can be caused by a variety of factors, including foundation movement, soil movement, and moisture changes. Cracks can appear in walls, ceilings, floors, and other areas of the building. They can be a sign of structural damage, and if left untreated, they can lead to serious problems. Some of the most common types of cracking and movement in buildings include:
- Settlement cracks
- Shrinkage cracks
- Thermal expansion cracks
- Structural cracks
Water Leaks and Dampness
Water leaks and dampness are common problems in Sydney’s apartment buildings. They can be caused by a variety of factors, including poor construction, inadequate waterproofing, and plumbing problems. Water leaks and dampness can lead to a range of problems, including mold growth, structural damage, and health problems. Some of the most common types of water leaks and dampness in buildings include:
- Roof leaks
- Window leaks
- Plumbing leaks
- Rising damp
Structural damage is a serious problem in Sydney’s apartment buildings. It can be caused by a variety of factors, including poor construction, foundation movement, and weather events. Structural damage can lead to serious problems, including collapse, and it can be expensive to repair. Some of the most common types of structural damage in buildings include:
- Foundation damage
- Wall and floor damage
- Roof damage
- Structural framing damage
In conclusion, Sydney’s apartment buildings have a range of common building defects, including cracking and movement, water leaks and dampness, and structural damage. It is important for buyers to be aware of these issues and to have a professional inspection before purchasing a property.