Home Buyers: How To Check Construction Quality Of Building? [CIDC Checklist]

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    While buying a house is a milestone in every Indians’ lives, most of us fail to check the construction of the structure in which are investing in. A recent report states that a whopping 84 percent of Indian home buyers are clueless about the due diligence and the construction quality check that should be done to assess the quality of a house.

    While the construction quality of a structure should ideally be the most important factor while making purchase decisions when it comes to buying one’s own house, it is often seen that budget constraints and location preference tend to dominate. Another reason for the staggering number of people failing to make any check on construction is the sheer lack of awareness.

    Knowing that the home buyers will not make any check in this regard, small builders and developers usually ignore the construction quality to cut some cost. The recent cases of building collapse across the country only add on to show how important is to double check the construction quality before investment.

    According to V. Suresh, Vice-Chairman of the National Building Code, the reference document for all buildings in India, there are four major components to quality of construction –

    • Structural: Includes column, beam, slab etc where you need a safety auditor to give you a report.
    • Non-Structural: partition walls, windows, etc, which form a part of the structure of your house but are not load bearing
    • Finishing: flooring, paints, tiling, faucets,
    • Services: plumbing and electrical wiring, safety switches, etc.

    To make your life easier, follow this checklist compiled by the Construction Industry Development Council (CIDC):

    • Floor Alignment:

    Carry some marbles while visiting the site and release them on the floor. If the floor is sloping it will roll in the direction of the slope. If there is a drain, the marbles should roll in the direction of the drain.

    • Nail Test:

    Carry a nail. Drive it into the plaster. If it goes easily the quality of mortar is bad. If the nail bends the mortar quality is good. Do the same test on bricks and in the mortar between bricks, if visible.

    • Seepage Test:

    Pour 5-6 buckets of water in the bathroom and do not let it drain. If seepage patches start appearing within 1-2 hours, it means joints are faulty.

    • Plaster Alignment:

    Inspect the house in the evening at dusk by switching on the light. The light should reflect evenly off the walls.

    Photo by Laurie Shaw from Pexels

    Developer’s brand also comes in handy when it comes to judging the construction quality of a project. One should visit the previous projects of the developer to check if there are service issues like seepage patches or slow lifts there. Look out for telltale signs like cracks in a building’s exterior that could be an indicator that the project has a faulty foundation.

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