Detached Property Expenses

Detached Property Expenses

Its almost impossible to dictate every single thing that can possible go awry with a house, but perhaps I can break it down a bit.

First and foremost, the largest different in owning a detached property compared to a strata property, is for a detached property you are responsible for nearly everything.  This means, if the gutters need cleaning, its up to you.  No one is going to make you do them.  If something goes wrong because you didn’t clean the gutters properly, its still on you.  Fire insurance?  Thats usually taken out by the strata complex as a whole.  For a detached property, again its all on you.

So while it may be enchanting to not have to pay strata fees every month, it now means the cost of repairs are born by the owner.  Which in the end, is usually more expensive.

This breaks down to the differences being this

  • Insurance
  • Repairs
  • Responsibility

So when looking at a house, as an inspector, I never try and tell people what should be a big deal to them.  Because everyone has a different item that may be a ‘deal breaker’ in their own eyes.

I did an inspection once where my client’s deal breaker moment was that the client drew pencil marks on the walls, and she didn’t want to move forward with the purchase because of this.  It is not myself buying the property, therefore my judgement doesn’t count in that regard.

However, what MOST people view as a ‘big deal’ would be expensive fixes.  Things that would cost a lot of money to repair.

But this still creates the question, what counts as a lot of money.  To one person, $500 may be a lot, to another person, $50,000 is ok

Another story.  I did an inspection for a client, where at the end of the inspection, there must of been about $250,000 worth of work to be done.  The client STILL continued with the purchase because he was purchasing the property for what he felt as was a good deal, and he wanted to really live in the area.  So the price tag of repairs wasn’t a big deal for him.

On the other side, I’ve also done inspections for clients where they are at their maximum budget on the purchase, and a small $300 repair was a big deal.

In short, what is expensive is the person viewing its perspective.  But if I can give one tip for those looking to purchase houses, always be prepared for some sort of expense.  It is very common that there will be, something, that needs to be fixed or replaced.  So always be prepared for it.

Now, there are indeed some common items that typically are expensive, or have the perception of being expensive.

  • Roof
  • Structure
  • Extensive water damage
  • Plumbing Lines
  • Electrical
  • Cladding or Envelope
  • Drainage
  • Decks