Buying a house is never an easy task. There are so many different things for you to consider. Not to mention, the various details to look out for to ensure that you do not end up making a bad decision.
Housing in Singapore is not at all cheap. As such, we should do everything we can to avoid future expenses in addition to the amount you bought the house for. Before purchasing a house, it is very important to ensure that you have looked through everything to ensure that you immediately spot problems that can be fixed before the house has been paid for. Being able to spot these problems can also be a benefit to you as you can use it as a reason to lower the price you’ll pay for the apartment. You can also find out more about how to save on your utilities here, such as reading up on the electricity tariff.
In this article, we will be telling you the things to look out for when purchasing a house. This applies to all housing types, from build-to-orders to condominiums.
1. Examine the walls
It is good to check the walls and ceilings of the house out. Look out for any signs of cracks. However, it is good to note that hairline cracks are normal and very common, this is usually due to the expansion and contraction of the walls in relation to the changing temperature.
It goes without saying that if you do find any big and long cracks along the ceilings and the walls, you have to point them out. This is because it can affect the overall structure of the building. It is good to get someone down to inspect the walls to see if the cracks are signs of structural defects. This is because huge cracks would cost you a lot of money to hire professionals to help you out with the repairs, plastering, and painting.
Owners of HDBs are the ones responsible for checking and maintaining the flat interior once their one year Defects Liability Period has ended. You might want to also ask the owners which of the walls can be done away with for renovations.
2. Check the floors
It would be such a bummer to end up with flooring that pops out and cracks. As such, it is very important to check if there are any cracks or chips on the installed floors that are made with tiles. These tiles tend to be made of ceramic, porcelain, vinyl, granite, and even marble.
If there are any dislodged or missing tiles or even those that are of a different design or material, it is good to check with your owners. This is because these small things can eventually create some safety hazards. Protruding tiles could cut you as they tend to be sharp.
When it comes to parquet or any other various types of wood, check if there are scratches, stains, dampness, and rotting wood. If these wood tiles are damp, it will attract termites.
Lastly, always look out for bumps in the flooring, you would not want to have uneven flooring.
3. No leaky pipes
When you are deciding on buying an apartment, another thing to check on is the water pressure around the household. Be it the showers or taps in the kitchen or toilets, it is good to check if the pressure is alright. Having low water pressure is not only a problem in your daily life but it is also a sign that there might be a leaking pipe. As such, you should also always check under the sink for any pipe leakages.
It is not only ‘the seeing’ but ‘the feeling’ too. When you are walking around the apartment and you feel that the walls are damp, it is an indication of a potential leaky pipe. Check the ceilings of your rooms, the toilets especially, to see if there are stains. These are all signs of a hidden leaky pipe.
4. Check for unwanted guests (pests!)
No one wants to live in an apartment infested with disgusting pests. Unfortunately for us, Singapore’s hot and humid temperature and climate make it a great environment for all these unwanted guests to manifest. These guests include mosquitos, cockroaches, termites, just to mention a few.
If you spot insect wings, empty egg cases, or pest droppings lying around the apartment, it’s time to bust out the insect bait. Look around the wooden furniture or walls in the apartment as well. If you see what looks like sawdust or some powdered wood around your furniture, it could mean that you have a termite problem on your hands.
Even if an apartment is relatively new, it does not eliminate the chances of having these unwanted guests over. The level you stay on too does not affect it. Pests are able to enter your homes in many different ways such as flying or climbing up your rubbish chute. It could also come from your neighbors and there is nothing you can do about it.
5. Air conditioning
With such a hot and humid temperature that lasts for almost the entire year, it is no secret that the use of the air conditioning might be a daily thing. Based on the research done by the National Environment Agency (NEA), the consumption percentage of air conditioning in homes goes up to at least 24 percent!
As such, it is good to check if the air conditioners are leaky and if they are working well. It is also good to check the Energy Efficiency Rating (EER) of the air conditioners to gauge the effectiveness of electricity usage. A higher rating means better efficiency.
You should always check with the owner how well he had maintained the air conditioner. This is because dust gets collected in the filter when it is used. Check the frequency with which it was cleaned and the number of times it has gone for servicing.
In conclusion, some of the things mentioned here could have passed you if you had not made the decision to check them. Everything in the house can look good from its appearance. But it is necessary to feel and look closer as well as to ask questions in order to get that perfect home you are looking for!