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Residential Buildings and the REIWA Building Annexure

Most sale contracts include a building inspection condition that requires a Pre-Purchase Building Inspection to be completed by a qualified Building Inspector, followed by a report. The report helps buyers get a clear understanding of the condition of the property they are buying. 

The most widely used building inspection condition is the REIWA Australian Standard Pre-Purchase Inspection for Major Structural Defects.

The focus of the annexure is on Major Structural Defects to the residential building. The Annexure defines many relevant terms used throughout the annexure however it is silent on what constitutes or makes up the “Residential Building” component of a property. And this is where some confusion can start for some people.

Residential Building Definition and InspectWA

Is the Workshop, Alfresco or Patio part of the residential building? Does the retaining wall next to the house form part of the residential building?  

These are all relevant factors buyers will need to consider when completing the Building Inspection Annexure. Section 1 or the REIWA annexure allows a buyer to insert other areas beyond the residential building for the seller to action should a Major Structural Defect be identified. 

Understanding what forms part of the “residential building” and other areas that could be included in Section 1 beyond the “residential building” can be very helpful for a buyer when completing the condition.  

Residential Building is a building or structure within the boundaries, under the main roof (including post initial construction). Includes Verandas constructed at the same time as the main dwelling. Alfresco under main roof. Attached and/or standalone structures containing habitable rooms. Retaining walls directly associated with the foundations of the Residential Building. 

Thankfully, the peak industry body representing Building Inspectors InspectWA, have released a position paper for buyers, sellers, and real estate professionals to refer to that firstly defines what a “residential building” is and secondly other areas beyond the “residential building”.  


Home Integrity InspectWA founding member

The team at Home Integrity are members of InspectWA and understand the term “residential building”, what’s included and what areas lie beyond. If you have any questions, we would be happy help. 

If you need a Pre-Purchase Building Inspection on a home, you are buying we can take care of everything fast.  Email us on admin@homeintegrity.com.au, or call the team on (08) 8375 8130.