When you’re building a new home, or even renovating an old one, you expect the best possible job. And why wouldn’t you? After all, a home is likely the biggest investment you will ever make. And you have every right to expect the highest standards of workmanship. But it doesn’t always happen that way. The sad but honest truth is that thousands of new homes built in Melbourne every year have major defects.
From design flaws that leave families shivering in winter, to potentially deadly electrical faults, there are plenty of ways that things can go wrong.
In this article, we will take a look at seven of the most common defects found in new homes built in Melbourne. We’ll also provide some tips on what you can do if you find yourself faced with one or more of these issues.
1) Defects to Sub Floor Structural Timber
As your custom-designed home begins rising from the ground, it’s easy to get caught up in all the excitement and forget about the technicalities of construction. But behind every wall, ceiling, and floor lies a complex network of structural timber joists supporting everything above them. And while they may not look like much, they are absolutely essential for keeping your home standing upright!
While most new homes in Melbourne are built to a high standard, there have been instances where builders have used sub-standard materials or failed to properly treat and protect the structural timber from moisture damage. This can lead to serious problems down the track, including sagging floors, cracking walls, and even collapse! If you suspect that your home may be affected by this issue, it’s important to get it checked out by a professional as soon as possible. Building Pest Inspection should also be conducted to rule out any termite defects.
2) Defects to Stumps Especially Timber Stumps That May Be Rotten
Timber stumps are the supporting posts that your home’s floor joists rest on. They play a critical role in keeping your home safe and stable, so it’s important to make sure they are properly maintained. Unfortunately, some builders cut corners by using sub-standard materials or failing to treat the timber correctly, which can lead to rot and decay over time. This can cause serious issues like sagging floors and cracking walls— which can be costly to repair. So do yourself a favour and get any timber stumps checked out by a professional.
3) Severe Dampness/Mould to the Sub Floor Caused by Broken Pipes
A broken pipe is one of the most common causes of dampness and mould in homes. If left untreated, it can cause serious damage to your property and lead to health problems for you and your family. The first sign of a broken pipe is usually a small puddle of water on the floor or an unpleasant musty smell. If you notice either of these, it’s important to act fast and call a plumber — Ignoring the problem will only make it worse.
4) Defects to the Plumbing Systems with No Installation of Breather Pipes
If there are no breather pipes installed in your home, it’s likely that you’ll experience problems with your plumbing system. Breather pipes are essential for allowing air to circulate around the system and preventing water from becoming trapped. Without them, water can build up and cause serious damage to your property. If you suspect that your home doesn’t have any breather pipes, it’s important to call a plumber as soon as possible so they can assess the situation and recommend a course of action.
5) Retaining Walls That Have Not Been Built Correctly
Retaining walls are designed to hold back soil and water, but if they’re not built correctly, they can actually do more harm than good. If a retaining wall is too tall or doesn’t have enough support, it could collapse and cause serious damage to your property. Additionally, incorrectly built retaining walls can allow water to seep through and cause erosion. As such, it’s important to make sure that any retaining walls on your property are constructed properly by a qualified professional.
6) No Insulation Installed to the Roof Void
Failing to insulate the roof void can cause your energy bills to skyrocket. It’s particularly important for homes in colder climates. If you don’t have adequate insulation, heat will easily escape through an uninsulted roof and make it difficult to maintain comfortable indoor temperatures.
7) Electrical Problems with the Switchboard
The most common cause of electrical problems in new homes is the switchboard. A switchboard is a junction box through which all the electricity in the home passes, feeding power to all the appliances and lights. If you have been involved with a new build, you’re likely to have seen a lot of builders working on this part of the house. But it’s not only when your home is under construction that you need to be aware of problems with your switchboard. When your builder moves out, they may leave behind some serious and potentially dangerous electrical defects. Many inexperienced builders will try to save on time and money by installing inferior switches and connection units, rather than quality materials that are built to last. This can lead to major problems down the line, including:
- Burnt-out lights
- Faulty wiring
- Faulty breakers
The place to start looking for these issues is the switchboard itself. Look for signs of damage like rust, dents, or bent pins – any of these things could indicate that your switchboard could be compromised. If you notice any of these signs it’s a good idea to get an electrician to take a look at them as soon as possible.