Don’t you sometimes feel as if the process of buying the house was just one big game between the buyer and the seller in which the latter is trying to outsmart the first one and trick them into purchasing a home that is really not worth the price? Well, if it’s a game they’re playing, no problem. We’ve prepared a list of the most common issues they’re trying hard to hide, so you will be well prepared to lower the starting price as much as possible, or even give up on the purchase altogether if the home in question has all these problems.
Before even taking a peek inside, let’s remember that location is everything, and for a good reason. First of all, you should check if the area is famous for common traffic congestion. Also, ask around to see whether any of your neighbors are too noisy to be put up with. If you have children, you have already enquired about the education institutions in the area, but what if they are not that suitable, so you plan on buying an affordable home and paying for education more in a school from a different district? The school district zoning system may represent an obstacle in this case.
These and plenty of other issues have a huge impact on the price of the property, so it’s advisable you get a free property report for the house you wish to buy. Not only will you have the price estimate and what to look for list, but also information on earlier sales, and even rental history.
Leaks of all kinds. This is something most people put off doing, and eventually they are closer to selling their homes than solving the simple issues. Leaking can appear anywhere: ceilings, roofs, radiators, faucets – you name it, it’s dripping and taking your money away. Most leaks occur in the bathroom of course, but you should check the whole house for signs of leakage.
Aging mechanical systems
Do not be fooled with the seller’s faked ignorance about the age of water heaters and HVAC systems. If that’s the answer you get, the systems are probably considered too old to be mentioned. Nevertheless, your home inspector should be able to find the information rapidly. As opposed to leaks, these can cost you quite a lot.
Imagine this: the freshly painted walls look picture prefect, as the whole house in general, but it hides one dirty secret – termites! Before you ask about any pest issues, check if the seller can lie to your face, i.e. if there aren’t any disclosure laws that would force them to share the information with you.
Even though some of them are really easy to spot, such as a sagging roof or cracks in the walls, that does not necessarily mean the complications are always going to be visible to an inexperienced eye. In order to definitely determine whether you would be in for a costly repair, call a home inspector to take a professional, closer look and give their stamp of approval (or not).
However, one thing a home inspector cannot help you with is a pool in the back garden. If you are looking for a home with a refreshing area, be aware that there is much more to check than just water consumption and pool shape. Most home inspectors aren’t trained to estimate pools since they have complex systems that can usually only be checked by a professional pool expert. Don’t expect from your seller anything apart from proudly presenting you the pool. No one is going to brag about the existing complications of something that is considered rather a luxury than a necessity, thus admitting their bad judgement.
Now that you know what to pay attention to, you are ready to begin proper house hunting, ask the right questions and negotiate the price. In short, let the games begin!
Guest blog provided by Bill Gordon:
Bill Gordon is a freelance writer who likes writing articles that cover small business and corporate related topics. He has written numerous articles and contributed to several other blogs. When he is not writing, he enjoys spending time with his wife and riding bikes.