Apartment Inspections – Several things to check before you buy.
Apartment building inspections are very important. Some of the main things you should consider when arranging apartment building inspections are:
How do l know if the apartment is in a good location?
A good location for an apartment is close to public transport (trains, trams and buses), major shopping centres and freeways. It is also better for an apartment to be the farthest away from noisy lifts and smelly and noisy rubbish chutes.
Check the orientation of the apartment. Avoid the apartments that face the very hot sun from the West in summer. The hot summer sun turns some apartments in to ‘hot boxes’ where even the air-conditioning systems struggle to keep the apartments cool.
Views from apartments are also important. A nice view makes it more pleasant to live in the apartment and adds value ! The better the view, the better the rental income is likely to be and the better the resale value is likely to be.
Is the size of the apartment adequate?
Some apartments are simply too small. The bedroom sizes are pinched and cupboard / storage space is very limited. It is important to measure the size of the apartment before you buy.
Check that the furniture you have will fit in the apartment. Confirm that the refrigerator space is large enough to accommodate your refrigerator and that there is a water outlet provided for the ice making unit in your refrigerator.
Ensure that your washing machine and clothes dryer will fit in the compact European style laundry. Make sure there is enough storage space!
Is the space allocated for car parking adequate?
Measure the length, width and height of the vehicle you drive and then check that the parking bay or garage is large enough to accommodate your car. Stacker parking can be a real pain – particularly if the power fails and your car is locked in position below another vehicle.
Avoid buying an apartment only to find out that your expensive SUV will not fit in the small parking bay allocated for your apartment. Also be wary of apartments that advertise 2 parking spaces. Often you have to park one car in front of the other car which means one car is always blocking the other car in. You soon get tired of always having to ask the other person to move their car so you can get your car out of the car park!
Storage Cages – Is there enough room?
Wire storage cages are becoming popular for housing all those extras that will not fit in your apartment or are not used frequently. Wire storage cages are often located in the car parking areas below the apartment block. Check that they are a reasonable size, that they can be locked and are not in an area of the car park that may be flooded.
How secure is my apartment?
It is important that your apartment, allocated storage area and car space are secure. Check that the apartment you are considering buying comes with a security key (FOB) that provides you with access: to the basement level where your car is parked, to the foyer of the apartment building, to the floor where your apartment is located and to any common areas such as swimming pool areas and / or gymnasiums.
It is preferable to have CCT security cameras outside the entrance(s) to the apartment building, in the foyer area, in the mail room area, in the lifts and in the car parking areas. The more security the better !
Is the apartment building well maintained?
If the appointed Owner’s Corporation is not ensuring that the building is being well maintained and that the Owner’s Corporation Rules are being complied with, the overall appearance and reputation of the building can rapidly decline. This directly effects resale values and rental values.
Therefore, it is important to check that the common areas (e.g. foyer areas, common hallways, amenities areas, lifts and car park areas etc.) are regularly cleaned and maintained.
What are the ongoing costs living in an apartment?
It is very important to check how much the annual Owner’s Corporation fees cost. The more facilities the apartment building has, the higher the Owner’s Corporation fees tend to be. Therefore, if the apartment you are considering buying is in a building that has lifts, a heated swimming pool, a gymnasium and common areas where owners and tenants can gather and socialise, the Owner’s Corporation costs are likely to be much higher.
It is important to remember that local council rates are another expense on top of the Owner’s Corporation fees.
Has the apartment been constructed compliant with all relevant building guidelines and Australian Standards?
Apartments that do not comply with relevant building codes and standards should be avoided. As there are hundreds of relevant building codes and standards that apartment buildings must comply with, it is essential that an experienced building inspector is engaged to thoroughly inspect the apartment and apartment building, preferably;y before the apartment is purchased.
If you would like to arrange for an apartment to be thoroughly inspected and a detailed report to be prepared, please call Finalinspect now on 0408 132 152.