Investment in commercial or industrial real estate is a complex and sometimes challenging venture. Advice from commercial brokers, certified appraisers and attorneys can help ensure that a fair market price is achieved along with clear title and other legal matters. However, whether buying a new facility or an existing one, most of the major expenses incurred when obtaining these types of properties comes from issues relating to defects in the structural and mechanical components.
Following the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors and the Florida Association of Building Inspectors Standards of Practice for Commercial Buildings, Advanced Engineering, Contracting & Inspections will provide a thorough inspection of the property, both inside and outside, tailored to the needs of the client. Additionally noted, if applicable, will be any observable detrimental impacts on the site from adjacent properties.
- Manufacturing plants Office Buildings
- Various NASA/PAFB Facilities
- Warehouses/distribution centers
- Retail centers/malls
- Restaurants, Apartment/condominium complexes
A complete visual inspection of the building and a limited operational assessment of its mechanical components is carried out to determine whether or not they are in proper working order. Included in this pre-purchase inspection is a limited infrared scan of the electrical panels for any overheating of the breakers or electrical connections which may be required by some insurance carriers.
No property will be flawless, even brand new ones. It is critical to address any issues of improper installation of components or fixtures, poor workmanship and missing items before a certificate of occupancy can be issued and closing can take place. Older buildings that have not been properly maintained will require costly repairs and that, if reported upon, can help negotiate a better overall purchase price for the investor(s). Additionally, having a complete record of the current condition of the property is invaluable for future budgeting/planning needs and establishment of a maintenance program.
Included in all reports are details regarding:
- Grounds and elevation – drainage issues, landscaping and irrigation system operation, security lighting and parking lot conditions, fencing.
- Structure and foundation of building(s) – observable cracks, shifting and deterioration of attachment and support components.
- Roof trusses, decking and covering – description, condition and estimated life expectancy, evidence of water intrusion or substrate deterioration, issues with improper installation of any components such as flashing and related items such as gutters.
- Wood components – condition of any trim around windows and doors, baseboards, soffit and fascia, porches.
- Windows and doors – operation and condition of all building openings, including motorized, defects such as broken glass or rust and impact resistance.
- Electrical system – description, condition and operation of the main service into the facility, all breaker panels and subpanels, all electrical outlets, lighting fixtures and switches.
- Heating, ventilating and air-conditioning system – description, condition and operation of all air handlers, condensing units, vents, ductwork and returns, drain lines, etc.
- Plumbing – inspection of all plumbing lines for leaks or improper installation, assessment of condition and operation of all plumbing fixtures present within the building(s), drains and vent pipes.
- Conveying Systems – description, condition and operation of elevators, escalators, dumbwaiters, pneumatic lifts, hydraulic equipment and docking systems.
- Equipment – description and condition of any mechanical equipment for operation of the furniture, office machines, appliances or other fixtures that are included in the purchase contract.
- Safety requirements – stability of hand rails, stair treads and risers, balcony rail heights and openings, thresholds.
- Interior – observable damage to any walls and their finishes, ceilings, floors and floor coverings.
- Energy Efficiency – adequate insulation in ceilings and walls, properly sealed windows and doors, assessment of HVAC system capacity.
The final report will be a description of issues observed at the time of the inspection that the inspector deems is of importance to the buyer(s) when considering and negotiating the purchase of a commercial property. The report is not to be considered all-inclusive, technically exhaustive or 100% accurate and is limited by time and budget constraints.
The inspection report is not a warranty, guarantee or insurance policy but is simply a written documentation of the inspector’s subjective professional opinion.