Non-compliant room that is not suitable for living use.

Non-compliant living room, identified by Peter Weddell, owner/operator of  Qld Home Buyers Inspection Service:

Living room that is non-compliant

Most people are not aware that it takes more than a ceiling height of 2.4 metres to comply with the building code requirements for use as habitable rooms (living spaces).

Associated Problems with type of construction:

  • Although the ceiling height of this sub-floor area was above building code requirements of 2.4 metres. The lower external brick walls did not have a damp-course barriers, weep-holes also rebate to the slab.
  • High moisture meter readings showed wetness to varying degrees from rising damp, although it had not rained for a long period. The readings are likely to increase considerably in adverse conditions.
  • Rising damp and seepage can lead to health problems with inhabitants (especially children, if they have breathing problems or may develop them).
  • The moisture meter readings also indicate the slab is not likely to have a plastic membrane below it, as the original intended purpose of the area was as a garage, not a living area.
  • The brick walls must not be covered with any type of material as it will trap moisture and potentially cause rot also attract termites.

Requirements for habitable areas:

  • Slabs must have a plastic membrane below them to stop rising damp.
  • Rebate required to the slab edges.
  • Damp-course barriers and weep-holes required to the lower external brick walls.
  • Ceiling height must be at least 2.4 metres.
  • Appropriate drainage and slab height above the outside soil and paving levels required.

These Building code requirements can only be achieved during, not after construction!

Non-compliant living room with high moisture reading

Non-compliant living room.

Important notes:

  • Without major reconstruction
  • This type of construction CANNOT BE CONVERTED for use as habitable areas.
  • Without associated problems developing.

If anyone states otherwise, get it in writing with iron clad guarantees !

For independent Building Inspections Brisbane in all suburbs, Qld Home Buyers Inspection Service. qbis.com.au