Building your new house can be a delightful experience. Also, you wish to  move to the new house as soon as possible. BUT, here’s something you must take into consideration before giving the final payment. And that is, get a Practical Completion Inspection done before the final payment. 

What is Practical Completion Inspection?

PCI is a stage where the construction supervisor gives you the final product with all the final touch ups. To be honest, this is one of the most important inspections in the house building process. This is because it is the time to find out any faults in the house and get them fixed before you have it.

Practical Completion Inspection is for you to meet the supervisor and get everything checked. You go through room by room with the supervisor and discuss the keep features of the house. Afterwards, the discussion goes to inspecting each and every corner to ensure the correct work.

If you find anything wrong, you can record it and the supervisor takes action accordingly. For the process, a document is signed and one copy will be given to you.

Inspector during practical completion inspection


Afterwards, the builder will repair the mentioned defects with the help of suppliers and trades. The builder usually takes 10-15 working days to handover the corrected property to the supervisor. This time can be extended if there are a lot of defects.

To make sure that All the things have been corrected, the supervisor will organize a second PCI and go through the checklist once again. Once this process is done, your house will be handed over to you as soon as possible.

Why is a Practical Completion Inspection important?

There are many inspections involved during the construction stage. However, Practical Completion Inspection is most important as it focuses on the final product. 

Understand this – Builders will only cover costs and correct the defects during the specified warranty period. 

PCI is your last chance to rectify any mistakes you see without paying extra. Therefore, PCI is one of the most important things you do before getting your new house.

When to do a Practical Completion Inspection?

Here’s the list to tell you when to do a Practical Completion Inspection.

  • The construction of the house must be completed. Only the defects will be considered as exceptions.
  • The property must be habitable.
  • There are no major works pending.
  • All the necessary services like water, sewage, electricity, etc are fully functional.
  • The property is cleaned and is ready to handover to the client.

If all the above mentioned things are not fulfilled, then you must avoid taking a Practical Completion Inspection with the construction inspector. This is because, without these things, the property is not considered ready for the inspection. 

It is better to have a thorough understanding about severe conflicts before the due time of Practical Completion Inspection.

Checklist for Practical Completion Inspection

1. Interior 

Let us talk about the interior elements to take into consideration while claiming Practical Completion Inspection. 

  • Check all the tapware, flushes and plugs of every bath, shower, sink, etc. 
  • See if any silicon is used in wet areas like baths, countertops, sinks, and taps. Also, make sure they are near and gaps-free. This is to ensure the areas are correctly sealed. 
  • Check the edges of the niches
  • See if the tiles are free from holes or gaps
  • Check all the electrical elements like light switches, power points, holders, etc. 
  • If there are dual switches, are sure they are wired correctly. 
  • If you have a security system, test it properly.
  • Also check the smoke alarms.
  • Check skirtings, window sills, architraves, ceiling, and walls.
  • See if any cracks are there.
  • Also see if there are any uneven areas on the wall.
  • Check all the fittings, fixtures, and benchtops
  • Make sure the windows and doors are opening and closing correctly.
  • All drawers, doors, cupboards, cabinets, etc are opening easily.

2. Exterior 

Let us now start with the exterior elements to take into consideration while claiming Practical Completion Inspection. 

  • Check that the external windows and doors are free from damage
  • Also see they open and close smoothly
  • All the handles are in good condition.  
  • See if the locks and keys are working properly.
  • Inspect the surroundings of windows and doors for damage.
  • See if all the tiles on the roof are free from damage
  • Check for broken, cracked, or missing tiles.
  • Check all the elements like gutters, valleys, fascias, downpipes, eaves, etc are free from damage.
  • Inspect weep holes, mortar joints, and brickwork for inconsistencies, cracks, or stains. 
  • Test the external power points or light switches. 

This is the overview of what you must look for when doing Physical Completion Inspection. While the list above is limited, it can provide a good initial point for preparing for inspection. 

If you still feel overwhelmed, Admired building & pest inspection is always available to help you. Lachlan is always up for helping people with Practical Completion Inspection. He helps you to assist you throughout the process of inspection. 

Why do you need to consider PCI?

TO BE HONEST, Practical Completion Inspection gives you the last opportunity to find any construction issues and make the builder correct them free of cost. 

There are some important things to consider. 

  • Some defects can be very challenging when it comes to correcting them. For example, if you want to remove the bathroom tiles
  • You must avoid construction damages linked to your presence in the house. For example, during the inspection you mistakenly broke the glass window. This will not be considered in the PCI.

When you do the Practical Completion Inspection correctly, it can help you to meet your expectations regarding your house. 

Frequently asked questions

1. What happens after PCI?

After the Practical Completion Inspection, the supervisor will arrange the items needed and finalise the things to be done. This includes cleaning the house and removing protective elements. Any problems will be rectified in 2 weeks. 

2. What is one process practical completion?

PCI is when you and your builder take a tour of the property before the handover procedure. It is the time when the builder has completed his work and now it’s your time to find any correction in the property. 

3. What is the most important thing to look for in a home inspection?

Safety is the first and foremost priority in a home inspection. Therefore, you must thoroughly examine the electrical system throughout  the house to ensure everything is good. Additionally, check the electric panel to ensure the wires and grounding is correct. 

4. What are the most common problems found in home inspections?

  • Plumbing issues
  • Faulty wires
  • Poor drainage
  • Inadequate ventilation
  • cooling/heating system defects
  • Roof problems