The adrenaline rush that comes when you find a home that melts your heart is amazing. It’s also pretty powerful and so often, causes eager buyers to purchase homes they didn’t fully inspect. A proper inspection ensures that major problems do not lurk underneath the surface of all that beauty. A home that is aesthetically appealing is only as good as it’s structure and the foundation that it sits on. Don’t discover too late that the home you’ve purchased is nothing more than a money trap. Inspect the 10 areas of a home before you close to ensure that you’re getting the quality home that you deserve.
1- Look at the Roof
Know the signs of a damaged roof before your tour of the home. Is the roof caving in? Are shingles missing? Does the roof look old and worn? A quality roof may lower your homeowners’ insurance premium and it certainly protects you from expensive repairs.
2- Does it Look Old?
If the home looks old and won, chances are, that’s exactly what it is and you could very well be buying a money trap. The home is only as good as its structure and if it doesn’t look like the home’s been properly cared for, that’s probably not very good.
3- Pipe Matters
Open the cabinets and look at the pipes. Does it appear that there is a leak? If the water is on, checking for a leak is pretty simple. Look for rust, worn-out pipes, and other signs of plumbing problems.
4- What’s That Smell?
Sewage odors are a sign that the septic tank needs to be pumped -or that more serious damage is present. Since you’re unfamiliar with the property, is really a gamble to determine which of the problems it is.
5- Is the Home Insulated?
A non-insulated home can really rock up energy costs during the summer and fall. Check the pipes and ductwork to ensure they’re properly insulated. Plus, insulation serves as a soundproof barrier to keep noises out.
6- Touch It
Touch everything in the home to make sure that it works the way that it should. Turn on the lights, open the cabinets, turn on the water, make sure those switches work, check the stove burners and the lights in the fridge. This way, you can ensure everything works or plan for repairs as needed.
7- Heating System Issues
Take a look at the heating system installed in the home. If it looks old and outdated, the home is likely due for an update. The average cost to install a new HVAC system is just over $10k, which is a major expense after buying a home.
8- Land Matters
A home built on poor land is doomed for problems. Learn the signs of land problems and keep an eye out as you inspect the potential new home. If the ground is soft, sloping, doors lean or do not properly shut, or the windows don’t close all the way, there could be land issues that cost a lot of cash to remedy in the future.
9- Water Damage
Yellow circle stains on the ceiling, bulging ceilings, mildew smells, and damage underneath wallpaper/paint are worth looking for during the inspection process. Water damage sometimes goes unnoticed, but this could be a costly mistake.
10- Call out a home inspector to look at the property before you buy.
For a small fee, home inspectors come out to look at the major and minor components throughout the home. He’ll provide you a detailed report of his findings, which you can use to decide if the home is still worth the costs, time, effort, etc.