Building Inspector or Certifier
Building inspectors and certifiers ensure that construction standards meet building codes, regulations, and contract specifications.
What does a Building Inspector or Certifier do?
Building inspectors ensure that construction meets local and national building codes and ordinances, zoning regulations, and contract specifications. Accredited certifiers issue development certificates to confirm they are satisfied the development meets legislative requirements. They inspect construction and subdivision work at critical stages, which differ according to the type of development.
As a building inspector, you might:
- inspect bridges, dams, highways, buildings, wiring, plumbing, electrical circuits, sewers, heating systems, or foundations during and after construction for structural quality, general safety, or conformance to specifications and codes
- inspect facilities or installations to determine their environmental impact
- monitor installation of plumbing, wiring, equipment, or appliances to ensure that installation is performed properly and is in compliance with applicable regulations
- measure dimensions and verify level, alignment, or elevation of structures or fixtures to ensure compliance to building plans and codes
- maintain daily logs and supplement inspection records with photographs
- review and interpret plans, blueprints, site layouts, specifications, or construction methods to ensure compliance to legal requirements and safety regulations.
As a certifier, you might:
- inspect buildings during construction to ensure proper methods and materials are used and that they conform to building regulations
- keep records and write reports on building progress in instances where regulations have been breached and plans have been altered
- issue compliance certificates on completion
- give evidence in court cases involving breaches of building regulations.
Key skills and interests
To become a building inspector or certifier, you would need:
- good verbal and written communication skills
- enjoy technical work
- able to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems
- numerical skills, to consider the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate ones.
Working hours and conditions
Most building inspectors and certifiers work full time during regular business hours.
Building inspectors and certifiers spend considerable time inspecting worksites, alone or as part of a team. Some inspectors may have to climb ladders or crawl in tight spaces.
How to become an Building Inspector or Certifier?
Entry Level Education
Most certifiers are qualified building surveyors.
To become a building surveyor you usually have to complete a VET qualification in building surveying. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information.
Your employment prospects may be improved if you have a degree in building surveying, construction management, civil engineering or architecture. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your senior secondary school certificate or equivalent. English, mathematics and physics would be appropriate subjects to study prior to university.
All construction industry workers must undergo safety induction training and be issued with a Construction Induction Card (CIC).
You may also need to be accredited by the Australian Institute of Building Surveyors or the Building Professionals Board. There are different levels of accreditation based on levels of qualification, which determine the kind of work you can perform. Contact the institute for more information.
Employment of building inspectors and certifiers is projected to grow about as fast as the average for all occupations. Increased government regulation and a desire to improve the quality of construction should continue to increase demand for inspectors.
Employment growth is expected to be strongest in government and in firms specialising in architectural, engineering, and related services.