What is a Commercial Building Inspection and What Do Inspectors Look For

June 15, 2023

Commercial Building Inspections Are more important than you might think. Not only are they important for new construction, but also for existing buildings. Commercial building inspections are essential to ensure that your business operates safely and efficiently every day.

Inspections can determine the basic functionality of a building’s structure. They can also check for health and safety violations, or identify potential hazards that may put tenants and building residents at risk. An inspection is a great way to validate stakeholder decisions regarding upgrading or repairing certain aspects of the property, and to help you coordinate with contractors in order to resolve issues efficiently.

Who will conduct commercial building inspections, and what will be checked? Take a look.

What is a Commercial Building Inspection?

Simply put, a commercial building inspection is an evaluation carried out on a property or building used for commercial purposes in order to maximize the profit or income from rental. This includes cafes and retail shops, offices, warehouses, factories, multi-family homes, single-family homes, restaurants, etc.

A commercial building inspection aims to uncover or identify any structural issues or other problems with the property. Commercial Surveys are conducted on a regular basis, but they will be most common at the beginning or end of a lease or when buying or selling a property.

This is particularly true when investing in commercial properties after the pandemic.

The commercial building inspection will show the true condition of the property, as well as any necessary costs for maintenance or remedial work. Commercial building inspections can be necessary at specific stages in the transaction process, and also throughout the lifecycle.

Who is responsible for a commercial building’s inspection?

For legal reasons, the commercial surveyor must conduct standard commercial building inspections. There are a variety of different types of building inspectors, who come from diverse backgrounds. Each performs different job functions depending on what type of building they are inspecting. If the building under inspection is a manufacturing facility, the inspector may need to be an industrial building surveyor, or structural engineer depending on the nature and scope of the inspection.

Commercial building inspectors may have backgrounds in property management, engineering, architecture, or other trades and jobs that are related to construction or property. It’s important to note that the more specialized the inspector is, the higher the price.

Don’t let less-skilled inspectors deter you – it is quite common for commercial building inspectors to also act as residential building inspectors, and vice versa. This is an increasingly common occurrence, especially with the shortage of inspectors. These inspectors are still very knowledgeable about the built environment, and they can conduct a professional inspection. They understand that commercial properties are different from private homes.

What is a commercial building inspector?

A commercial building inspector will walk around the property on the day of inspection and take photos. The inspector can then document existing problems and any changes that might be needed in the future.

A commercial building inspection also includes a visual inspection on the exterior, a walkthrough of the interior and a review the documents associated with the property.

Visual inspections outside are conducted to look for any cracks or deficiencies on the building’s exterior, as well as other potential problems. The interior of the building can be inspected to assess the condition of fire doors, internal fittings, and windows.

The documents that are associated with a property, such as the mortgage documents, the sale contract and the insurance policy can be reviewed. It is done to ensure that the property is in compliance with all documents.

Commercial building inspectors will look for structural defects, safety hazards and critical issues in any part of the structure. A commercial building inspector can better identify problems that may have occurred or could occur in the future if they uncover more during their inspection. It is in the best interest of all parties, including tenants, to ensure that building occupants feel safe and secure. A commercial property inspector may also look for the following:

  • Landscaping
  • Utilities
  • Structure
  • Building envelope (including the exterior, basement and attic)
  • Roofs
  • HVAC equipment
  • The Plumbing
  • Electrical systems
  • Stairs
  • Fire safety

Commercial inspections can focus on the return on investment or asset value rather than on highlighting issues. Typically, inspections for this purpose will focus on roofing, plumbing and HVAC, as well as structural integrity. If a HVAC system is not performing well, the owner of the building or the buyer may decide to delay any necessary repairs until later on in the asset’s life. They could also find out how long it will take to fix a problem or perform maintenance so that they can prepare for the future.

What will commercial building inspections look for?

  • Building Documents

Commercial building inspectors examine a variety of documents. This could include planning requests, construction documentations, environmental studies and certificates of fire safety, as well as surveys.

  • Building Exterior

The inspector can detect any structural issues or deficiencies by looking at the exterior of the building. The inspector may also want to look at the roofing, landscaping or other exterior features of the building.

  • Building Interior

The interior of a building is a complex task, and there are many factors to take into consideration, particularly in commercial inspections. Inspectors may examine hazards, fire safety, walls, kitchen facilities and other interior factors.

  • Building Systems

Major systems are as important as a building’s structure or interior. Electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems all require inspection. The value and safety of the property can be drastically affected if one component fails.

When to perform a commercial building audit

There is no “best time” to perform a building examination. All year long, inspections can be done at any time. Building inspections can be conducted at any time, day or night. They are not just for the purpose of completing a purchase or lease. Instead, they help the building manager maintain the structural integrity and safety of the structure throughout its lifetime.

Commercial building inspections such as cleaning or safety inspections can be crucial to ensure that a building remains in good condition, the employees or occupants are happy and safe, and that an asset is as valuable as it can be.

Commercial Building Inspection in Liberty, which may have seemed to be a major undertaking in the past, are actually quite simple. software for commercial building inspection allows inspections to be completed in a fraction the time and with little or no disruption.

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