When buying a new home, it can be extremely difficult to find something that you like and can afford, so you might feel pressured into making a decision right away. However, ignoring some major flaws in a property may quickly turn your new home into a money pit. Make sure you examine any home carefully before you make an offer, or better yet, hire someone to conduct a professional inspection. Here are some problems you may encounter when inspecting a property, which might make you reconsider buying it.
Poorly Maintained Roof
A good roof can last up to 20 years, but if the previous owners have not maintained it well, you might have to change it sooner than you think, which can cost up to 20 000 dollars. Check the roof for missing shingles, leaks or stains and inspect the gutters for any gravel to make sure that the drainage works properly. Don’t forget to also examine the roof line- a roof line that is not straight might indicate a sagging roof that has a structural defect and may not able to supports its weight.
2. Foundation Problems
There are many reasons for foundation problems, but one of the most common ones is bad water drainage, which causes the soil around the house to contract and expand, putting pressure on the foundation. Cracks in the walls, especially on top of doors or windows, sagging floors, warped ceilings or a crooked chimney might all be signs of problems with the foundation. Serious structural problems in the foundations could cost tens of thousands of dollars to repair.
3. Outdated Electrical Wiring
An outdated electrical installation can cause all sorts of troubles, from limiting how many appliances you can use at one time, to dangers of fire or electrocution. Make sure your house has at least a 100 amp or even a 200 amp electrical service, which will allow you to run several appliances at the same time. Check for obvious problems such as exposed wires or old light fixtures. Rewiring an entire house generally costs around 5000 dollars.
4. Mold Infestation
Mold is not just an aesthetic problem, but also a health one, as it can cause allergies and lung disease. Small mold spots in the bathroom can be easily resolved by using extra ventilation, but mold inside the walls will be extremely hard to get rid off and might eventually make the house uninhabitable. When inspecting a new house, find out the place’s history with respect to mold infestations and water leaks. Sellers are required by law to disclose any previous mold problems.
5. Wood-boring Insects
Insects such as termites, beetles, and carpenter ants are not only unpleasant, but can cause severe structural damage to houses by chewing through wood. Termites are thought to cause billions of dollars in property damage every year, and because they are hard to spot, it can take years before an infestation is even discovered. Every homebuyer should consider a wood-boring pest inspection by a professional, who will examine the entire house for signs of termite damage or conditions that might cause an infestation in the future, such as cracks or moisture.
Buying a home is an exciting venture, but it’s also one of the biggest financial decision you will ever make. Though it might feel tempting to immediately make an offer once you have found the house of your dreams, it is wise to carefully inspect any potential home for major flaws. A damaged roof, outdated electrical wiring, foundation problems or infestations can not only create an unpleasant living environment, but could cost you tens of thousand of dollars, making the house much more expensive than you had planned.
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