Has your new home been completed to a high standard?

Building a new home should be one of the most exciting times of your life.  It is also likely your largest investment and this can be daunting – and a little scary at the same time.  A thorough practical completion inspection is crucial to remove any fears you may have at the end of construction.

After your design and specification is done and your colours/selections are complete, you are on your way.  But now your home is at the Practical Completion stage.  How do you know it has been built to the appropriate standards and tolerances?  If you have already undertaken staged building inspections, you will have a better understanding of the process and potential pitfalls that can sour your experience.  But you will also be more prepared for Practical Completion and the final inspection.

If you haven’t undertaken staged inspections, it’s not too late.  A Practical Completion Inspection is critical to ensure your dream home is finished to the level and  standard you expected.

Brand New First Home Owner home. It may be at practical completion, but is it really ready to hand over?

How to maintain the relationship between a builder and a homeowner at Practical Completion

The relationship between a builder and a homeowner is a complex one. The relationship often lasts over 12 months, has had highs and lows, and is rarely perfect.

All homes can have errors and defects that are not picked up until practical completion. Worse still, if they are not picked till after handover, where do you stand?

It primarily depends on whether it is a defect or not.  However, what if there was damage that wasn’t picked up, or it just hadn’t been cleaned to a professional standard at handover?  In this case, your options are limited, how can you prove that the window wasn’t dented, or the door wasn’t scratched when you were moving in.  This is the question that will be asked by your builder. And if it wasn’t noted at a practical completion inspection, your chances of a remedy will be limited.

Following are a few examples of typical issues found during a practical completion inspection.  Whilst some are defects that would have to be fixed regardless, I think we would all prefer to move into our new home with minimal work or chasing up to be done. These photos are all from a brand-new home inspected by Home Integrity.

Remember, your builder’s aim is certainly not to build you a sub-standard home.  Building is a complex process and having someone on your side at the practical completion stage to capture relevant issues is a comforting thought.


Kitchen sink waste leaking

Poor silicon under freestanding/feature bath

Top & bottom of doors not painted. Would you have thought to check these?

Handle missing.  If not captured now, who really lost it?

Poor tiling finish.  And didn’t your contract specify mitred corners?

Ducting to exhaust fans complete?  I don’t think so!

Just simply not cleaned as would be expected for an new home


Dented frame.  Hard to see.  Your problem if not found and listed at Practical Completion Inspection

What to expect from a Practical Completion Inspection.

The best option to ensure your new home is finished to the correct standard and tolerance, and importantly, to your contract, specification and overall compliance, is to undertake a professional practical completion inspection.

Your building inspector will attend site, undertake an extensive number of measurements and checks, and report on any defects, along with the general condition and standard of the build. 

A typical practical completion inspection will cover all areas of the home including interior, exterior, roof void and complete roof cover areas. All electrical and plumbing will be checked, as will cabinetry, tiling, doors/finish carpentry, painting and all other finishes/workmanship.  Even down to the level of cleanliness. As an example, even a simple paint splatter shouldn’t have to be cleaned up by you prior to moving in.   This extensive list can be presented to builder as a record and part of the practical completion/handover process, to document the final step in your journey.


In this building, the fall of the drain in the shower was not compliant.  This would have led to damage to surrounding elements and possibly flooding.  This is not a simple fix with all tiling to be removed, re-waterproofed and re-screeded.  Tiles would have to relaid before replacing shower screen.  This would have major impact when you are living in the new home.  Certainly better to capture defects like this early

How to get Home Integrity to do your Practical Completion Inspection.

At Home Integrity, our practical completion inspections are thorough and easy to read.  We work with homeowners to minimise their concerns and stress, and liaise with the builders to ensure all details are dealt with quickly and efficiently. 


If you require any of our services or further information, please click here or phone Anne on 61184942 or 0420803292