With all the real estate commercials and property TV shows out there, it can almost seem as if buying a house is a simple everyday matter based solely on design, décor and location. The reality is, life is not that simple and buying a house is a lot more involved than naively falling in love with what you think is your dream home. Are you suddenly going to find yourself in a comfortable house, or one that going to give you headaches down the road? Even though you are working with a real estate professional, you still need to look beyond the luster and sparkle of a perfectly staged and prepped offering. Make sure you look for the small telling details by taking a step back to view everything with a critical lens in order to make sure you know what you’re getting into.
Here are five things you should look out for when viewing that perfect home.
1. Are there any roof leaks?
Depending on the material used, a well-maintained roof can last between 25-30 years and in the case of concrete tiles over 50 years however you still have to watch out for poor workmanship and a shoddy installation. Before buying any house, it’s essential to find out how old and in what condition the roof is. You should also perform a gutter inspection to make sure the drainage system is working well. It’s also vital to check the roof from the attic to know whether there are any roof leaks that can’t be readily seem from the outside.
2. Are there cracks in the foundation?
Although you would expect to find some minor hairline cracks in concrete, any crack in the foundation could be cause for alarm. Even if the foundation appears to be solid, a crack can mean anything from the fact that the homes basement may leak at certain times of the year to the extreme of having a major structural problem. Even if a crack has been plastered over and dismissed by the sellers, all this bears further investigation by a licensed home inspector in order to make sure that there are no issues.
3. Are the floors tilted?
No, you don’t have to bring a marble with you to a showing to see if the floors are even. But you should be keenly aware of any missteps as you walk through the home which could be a result of high and low spots with the flooring. This could signify excessive settlement and movement with the homes structure.
4. Is the house in a flood zone?
You may have just found the perfect waterfront house on the lake or one next to the river but is that dream home prone to flooding. Don’t get too wrapped up in any home that has prior flood issues as you may be buying someone else’s problem. Homes in an active flood zone are often a challenge to sell, so even if the price is attractive, you will have to check if getting insurance and a mortgage is a problem for the property.
5. Are there any pesty issues?
Having the odd ant or insect in the home you are viewing is something that can be considered normal in certain areas, however, don’t make the mistake of avoiding further inspection if you see a lot of creepy crawlies throughout the house. Having
If you see some of the issues above when viewing that perfect home, make sure that you do some further investigation before making any offers. Otherwise, you could easily go from thinking that you bought the right house to unfortunately finding out that you bought the wrong house and one that you want to quickly sell off. While we are not suggesting that you become a professional home inspector, thinking like one is never a bad thing when it comes to viewing a property.