Looking for a new home to buy can be incredibly exciting. The house you’re interested in probably looks amazing in the photos you’ve seen, and probably even had a great feeling when you toured it. It might even feel as if it’s “the one” you’ve been searching for. However, a lot of great looking houses can hide secrets that are a bit dark and might not be obvious at first glance. So, how can you make sure that you aren’t in store for some nasty surprises?
First of all, you need to be sure you’ve chosen the right real estate agent. See, it can be easy to get carried away in your excitement. When you see the house in person, you may already be envisioning where you’ll put all of your stuff. The neighborhood is fantastic, and it fits into your budget. However, with the right realtor, you’ll have an easier time knowing if it’s just too good to be true because they’ll know what to look for and point it out to you when it’s too good to be true.
Most people who are interested in buying a home take out a mortgage. Of course you need good credit for a mortgage payment, but if you don’t currently have a great score there are ways around it. Look into emergency loans for bad credit. Taking out these loans and paying them off quickly will greatly raise your credit score and enable you to take out a mortgage when you are buying your first home. You will need to be in a good financial position, however. Be careful not to fall into a mortgage trap.
If you know what to look out for, there’s no need to worry. Even though some houses might have a few hidden surprises, a bit of vigilance before purchasing a house can keep you from falling into a trap that can cost you a lot of money, even though there’s been a price drop in houses lately. You can begin to look for signs by seeing if there are a lot of other houses on the street that are also for sale. If there are, check into why so many people are choosing to move.
Inside the house itself, you can look for signs of neglect. These might include things like leaks or other issues with moisture. You may want to go in with something called a moisture meter on you so that, in the event that you spot any wood that appears to be a bit soft, you can use the meter to determine just how bad it really is. In a perfect world, you’d want the reading to be under 16%, but as long as it’s under 28%, you can still fix it, and you’ll be incredibly glad that you found it before you signed anything!
There are other signs of neglect to look for as well. They include things like rust on the water heater, air conditioner, and/or other appliances. See if there are service notes available for each of the large appliances. Check the roof for missing shingles or tiles. Also, see if the roof tiles/shingles are curling or moldy. Roofs are expensive to replace. Whatever it is, be sure to look carefully at the details.
Structure and Other Large Items
While you’re in the home, feel it. If the air or heater is on, is the temperature roughly the same in every room? If not, the HVAC system might need to be repaired or replaced. Are the doors solid or hollow core? If the materials the sellers used weren’t of good quality, they’ll need to be replaced eventually. What about the electrical panel? If the system is older, there can be issues that can result in fires or electrocution. Also, make sure that none of the door frames are tilted. This can be a hint of the foundation sinking or settling.
There’s really nothing like the feeling you get when you purchase a new home. The tips you’ve read here today will ensure that you’re equipped with the information and tools you need in order to locate a home that’s safe and sound.