Looking for a new house that fits your needs is one of the most enthralling experiences you can have. However, most people usually buy homes with underlying problems which may have gone unnoticed at first glance.
In the long run, repairing these damages may end up costing you more than what you had actually budgeted for. Therefore, it is prudent to identify all the red flags that might exist before purchasing a home.
This will help you make a wise financial decision as well as purchasing a home that is worth every dollar.
Things To Look Out For Before Purchasing A Home
Damage from termites
In America, termites are one of the most annoying pests, and they are very hard to get rid of on your own. Termites flourish in warmer climates, therefore, they are most prevalent in homes located in the Southwest, Southeast, South, and West.
Worse yet, is that termite damage may be misinterpreted to be water damage. As such, you may be buying a home with a termite infestation without a clue of the challenge that lies ahead.
When inspecting a home, you should always check for termite damage in ceilings, floors, and wood walls. The following are some indicators of termite damage or infestation in a house:
- Termite waste; usually looks like the color of wood
- Abandoned insect wings, usually belonging to young termites
- Bubbles in paint or wood
- Discolored wood or paint
Condensation in windows
When you find foggy windows when looking for a home, it usually means that there might be failed seals in the windows. Failed seals may also trap moisture inside of the house. This makes most of the moist air to move in from outside and condense on the inside.
Apart from giving your windows a displeasing appearance, your utility bill may also increase since your home will most likely lose cold or hot air from your HVAC system. Opening windows frequently is known to cause damage to window seals and without proper maintenance, they become foggy.
Luckily, there are various alternatives you can pursue when you have foggy windows. They can be replaced with new, energy-efficient window varieties or you can install new IGUs instead of replacing whole windows.
One main cause for doors which don’t close well is the shifting of framing members. This usually means that the door cannot fit the frame, and therefore anyone buying the home may have to cut a piece of the door; either bottom or top-side, to force it to close.
Faulty doors are usually caused by weather issues, foundational problems, or improper construction. If it’s a single door that has an issue, you can always replace it with a new fiberglass door which is better at resisting warping compared to wooden doors.
When you enter a home and you feel like you are off-balance, it might be an indicator of sloppy floors. This is usually brought about by significant structural issues that need fixing. Some of the issues could be:
- Foundation or soil problems
- Collapsed beams under the floor
- Floors or supports using rotten wood
A good hack of identifying a sloppy floor is placing a marble on it. If it starts rolling on its own, then you might consider looking for another house.
Multiple layers of shingles or missing shingles on roofs
When a roof is missing shingles, it indicates that the roof needs replacement or repairs. However, multiple layers of shingles could mean that subpar work was done by a roofing company or a previous homeowner is trying to conceal something.
Additionally, multiple layers of shingles can trap heat and add unnecessary weight, which are not ideal for any home.
Ceilings that are sagging
Before completing your home search, always make sure that the ceilings are not being affected by tiny water bubbles or sagging. Sagging ceiling indicate:
- Leaks above the ceiling which soften wood used in ceilings causing them to bend
- Issues with the structural integrity or foundation of the home
Repairs for sagging ceilings are usually expensive and they should be avoided at all costs.
Homes with bargain prices
Apart from structural issues, houses with an extremely low market price should also be examined with a lot of care. You should always ask yourself why a house is being advertised at a lower price than the rest of the houses in the same neighborhood.
In most cases, realtors don’t lower prices to suit you. Therefore, the house could be having issues which warrant the discount. A good practice is always being up to date with the current mortgage rates since they fluctuate on a daily basis.
BONUS TIP: Hire an esteemed inspector
Even though you might find no issues with a home, it is always wise to have a reputable inspector thoroughly inspect the house. As a matter of fact, before a mortgage lender underwrites a loan for you, they may require the home to be inspected.
An inspector may also provide a value for the home you are willing to purchase, making it possible to buy at a fair price.