Many development approvals, whether for small construction projects or large infrastructure programs now contain conditions which require an independently prepared professional Dilapidation Report for surrounding land and buildings prior to any work being undertaken.
Furthermore, many clients and contractors recognise that a Dilapidation Report is an effective tool to mitigate the risk of claims from adjoining owners during, or following, construction works.
What is a Dilapidation Report?
A Dilapidation Report is a detailed record of land and buildings at a specific point in time. The Dilapidation Report will describe the current overall condition of the area and buildings, identify any defects (in particular cracking, subsidence, water ingress, etc), and include a schedule of photographs with specific reference to any defects which exist.
The Dilapidation Report is then held on file for future use should any claims for damage be made.
A Dilapidation Report can be as comprehensive or as limited as the client requires, however as a minimum, the following should be considered:
- Review the development approval conditions and advise the client what is required to satisfy those conditions;
- Undertake a thorough inspection of the adjacent land and buildings;
- Prepare a detailed Dilapidation Report, recording the condition of the adjacent land and buildings and identifying all defects;
- Seek the acknowledgement of the contents of the Dilapidations Report by the adjoining owners. This is not always possible, but reduces the risk of claims significantly.