What Is a Building Inspector?


You Will Learn.

  • What a Building Inspector is. 
  • What the responsibilities of a Building Inspector are.
  • What qualifications a Building Inspector needs.
  • Average salary of a Building Inspector.
  • What skills a Building Inspector needs.  
  • Where the latest Building Inspector jobs are and how to apply for them.
Three construction workers stood looking at a laptop

What Is a Building Inspector?

A Building Inspector is the person responsible for deciding whether a building meets building code requirements and safety regulations. 

They are also responsible for inspecting construction sites to ensure that the work taking place is safe and the people working there are following building regulations. 

A Building Inspector will sample building materials to check their quality and will usually be certified in different disciplines that allow them to pass a professional judgement on the quality and safety of different buildings.

Building Inspectors will generally complete their work at key stages of a building project, such as the commencement stage, the excavation stage, the foundations before they are built upon and the primary structure of a building. 

What Are the Responsibilities of a Building Inspector?

While working as a Building Inspector, you will be required to: 

  • Advise on building regulations that must be adhered to. 
  • Inspect building work as it progresses along different stages of the process.
  • Check that work taking place is meeting building regulations.
  • Measure different building materials to check they are of high quality.
  • Sample different building materials to check they are of high quality.
  • Detect defects that need to be fixed and recommend methods for doing so.
  • Create reports for the attention of construction managers and clients.
  • If necessary, liaise with water and fire authorities. 
  • Issue Plans Certificates if these are requested. 
  • Monitor building work as it progresses throughout different stages of a project. 

Frequently Asked Questions

In order to become a Building Inspector, work experience in a construction trade is usually required. 

A minimum of 4 or more GCSEs and a minimum of 2 A Levels are also required and you can also study a BTEC Subsidiary or Extended Diploma in Construction and the Built Environment, Building Services or Civil Engineering.

If an Apprenticeship is more up your street, an Advanced Level 3 Apprenticeship in Built Environment Design, Building Services or Civil Engineering will also equip you with the relevant skills and experience. 

Higher apprenticeships are also available to those wanting to learn on the job. 

To be approved, an aspiring Building Inspector must apply to the Construction Industry Council Approved Inspectors Register (CICAIR).

Maintaining the title of an Approved Building Inspector will involve being assessed every 5 years and CICAIR will notify you roughly 18 months before your approval is due to expire.

The average salary for a Building Inspector in the UK is around £30,000 per year.

However, this can vary depending on factors such as the region of the UK, the size of the company or organisation, and the level of experience and qualifications of the Building Inspector.

Some Building Inspectors may earn more based on their level of expertise and specialised certifications.

Generally, a Building Inspector will work for a Local Authority and this is how they will be delegated work. 

However, it is also possible for a Building Inspector to take up a vacancy with a regulatory and advisory construction body.

Some Building Inspectors will work for a private building inspection company who will be government-approved. 

What Skills Does a Building Inspector Need?

Key skills of a Building Inspector include: 

  • General building and construction knowledge in order to accurately assess sites.
  • Knowledge of building regulations to ensure buildings and construction sites are adhering to these.
  • Good communication to effectively liaise with project managers and other tradespeople. 
  • The ability to remain calm under pressure if someone is not happy with the outcome of your inspection. 
  • Good diplomacy to effectively communicate the results of an inspection. 
  • Good attention to detail to ensure no faults or defects are missed when carrying out a building inspection. 
  • Competency using IT and computer software when required. 
  • The ability to use initiative and make informed decisions if there is a reason to question something during a building inspection.
  • Good time management to ensure inspections are given full attention and completed to a high standard. 
  • Effective analytical thinking to understand building regulations. 

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