Tips for buying a renovated home

Some property investors make their money by buying older houses in good neighbourhoods – then renovating and “flipping” the house.  This is a good business strategy for the property investor.  It can also benefit the home buyer who can often get an upgraded and modernized home in a well-established older…

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Black mould on ceilings and walls

HouseCheck home inspectors very often find black mould growing on the walls and ceilings of bathrooms and bedrooms. John Graham CEO of HouseCheck explains that mould is a fungus.   Mould usually occurs in rooms such as bathrooms and bedrooms which are badly ventilated and which contain damp air (from shower…

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Neighbours and building plan departures

I had an interesting call from Brian (name has been changed) in Pinelands, Cape Town.  Brian’s neighbours want to put a second story on their existing thatched roof house, which like many older Cape Town properties has been built over the building line.  This house is only 2 meters from…

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Inspecting thatched roofs

HouseCheck home inspectors take the following factors into account when inspecting thatch roofs: Thatch should have a minimum thickness of 175 mm and a maximum thickness of around 250 mm and the thatch should be well-compacted.  Good compaction of the thatch results in better durability and will also slow down…

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How to diagnose damp problems

Damp damage to house walls is frequently encountered by HouseCheck inspectors.  HouseCheck inspectors are equipped with sensitive moisture meters which enable them to determine whether the visible damp damage is old, unrepaired, damp damage or whether the surface is still wet.  Wet surfaces indicate that the problem is on-going.  HouseCheck…

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Detecting the causes of damp

Damp, often in the corner of a room is sometimes seen by HouseCheck home inspectors.  This is likely to be rising damp, or it may be damp from a leaking pipe in an adjoining bathroom, or maybe penetrating damp caused by a garden sprinkler continually wetting an outside wall. Rising…

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Roof replacement or repair?

Some older house roofs in South Africa  need replacement rather than repair.  A home inspection will help identify if roof replacement or roof maintenance is the best option. Much of South Africa’s housing stock is in the older suburbs, which were established before or soon after the Second World War.  …

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