In Kunming, my apartment had pipes that were outside the walls. Very useful when the pipes burst, each of seven times. My dorm last semester also had the pipes outside the walls. But this semester, I am in an apartment off campus, and the pipes are inside the walls.
The floor below mine has some mouldy growth on the ceiling, probably because there is a pipe leaking that runs under my apartment. But since the pipes are not run outside the walls and under the ceiling in a clearly visible place, they will have to tear up my bathroom floor. This being a seven day holiday in China, I am not so inclined to stay in my apartment and wait for people to come and "fix" the problem. I want to ride my bike. If they had used quality pipes or quality materials to connect pipes, this wouldn’t be a problem. Or if the architects specified pipes outside the walls, it would not be a problem.
I wonder if China will ever begin creating building codes or building inspections. Maybe they can do it when they get rid of the rules that property reverts to the government after a 70-75 year period following construction. True, it is only the land that reverts to the government, but buildings here aren’t constructed in a way they could be easily moved to a new plot of land to avoid government takeover of physical property.