Building Pathology

Building pathology (defect analysis) describes the inspection, investigation, diagnosis and reporting of defects within buildings. As such Chartered Building Surveyors are better placed than any other profession to undertake building pathology reports and to oversee the necessary remedial works. 

Ellis Belk only employs highly experienced Chartered Building Surveyors to undertake building pathology reports and we believe that our reports are second to none. 

Our investigations usually start with the collation of any historic and background information - essentially a desktop survey. We then inspect the property and carry out our investigations and measurements. Sometimes we have to re-visit the property if we discover something unexpected or if we need to take and/or obtain further readings etc. 

We use specialist equipment to undertake surveys, including electronic moisture meters, borescopes, hygrometers, callipers, lasers and so on. We can also undertake dye-testing to find the source of water leaks. 

As well as acting for private individuals, we are regularly employed by Housing Associations, Managing Agents and Commercial Clients. We are experienced in dealing with tenants and special needs groups and are always respectful of their privacy and understand the importance of minimising disruption. 

Building Pathology covers subjects such as:

  • Structural physical failure of components (especially roofs and balconies).
  • Penetrating dampness, rising dampness, cold bridging and condensation.
  • Thermal insulation
  • Deleterious materials such as asbestos 
  • Wood boring beetle infestation e.g. woodworm - the common furniture beetle (Anobium Punctatum), death watch beetle (Xestobium Rutovillosum), house longhorn (Hylotrupes Bajulus), etc.
  • Wood rot e.g. dry rot (Serpula Lacrymans), and wet rot (several varieties of fungus).
  • Moisture movement and thermal movement.
  • Ground movement/subsidence, settlement
  • Trees resulting in structural failure of foundation and wells.

Building Pathology Reports 

Our reports are written in plain English and we include footnotes to explain any technical terms. We write our reports with the reader in mind and we include annotated photographs. 

Expert Witness Reports 

Unfortunately, we can sometimes unearth problems that could have been avoided and that can result in legal action against the builder or designer. We are highly experienced in developing our Pathology reports into full Expert Witness Reports.