Are you finally in the position to start looking for your dream home? Or have you been looking at houses already and not sure of all the things you should be looking out for?
If you aren’t certain if you can trust your own judgment in such a big investment, you could get a few certified inspectors to do a few checks and inspections. From a pre purchase termite inspection to checking the wires, they’re all necessary to ensure value for money. Let’s tell you more about six important inspections you can’t skip when house hunting.
Foundation issues are easy to spot. Just look for cracked walls. Cracked foundations could indicate roofing issues and problems with the door frames.
Cracked foundations could also be as a result of substandard steel reinforcements in the foundation or even natural events like earthquakes. Ask the questions. Establish the exact history of your potential house and the area where it’s located in.
Damp indicates the presence of water, or moisture within the walls of a house. It’s caused by condensation and humidity inside the house & can cause severe damage to the property.
You will easily see if the house you’re looking at has damp. Peeling or flaking paint and loose plaster are clear indicators that the house has a moisture problem. Mould growth will also be evident on the walls in the form of black, grey or even green spots or patches. Be especially vigilant about signs of this in bathrooms, basements and kitchens.
Continuously inhaling mould spores can lead to several health issues such as chest tightness, sore throat, wheezing, watery eyes and nasal congestion. Further exposure to damp can lead to respiratory problems. It really isn’t a problem to be ignored.
The Horror of Termites
Termites are silent little critters with the potential to inflict severe damage to your dream house. They devour wood from the inside and evidence of their presence is not obvious until an infestation has progressed considerably. A termite colony infesting the wood in your home can cause severe structural damage. The warning signs can be subtle; it’ll probably take a certified expert to identify them.
It’s possible to get a licensed pest inspector to perform a pre purchase termite inspection that will determine if there are termites and how far along the infestation is. They can provide a potential solution to eradicate the problem.
Pre-purchase pest inspections can also be done for other types of pests such as carpenter ants and wood wasps. The inspector will be able to determine if the infestations are from current or previous activities and provide the necessary advice for solutions.
No matter how lovely a house or its roof looks from the outside, it’s important to check the roof on the outside as well as the inside. There are a few points to consider when checking the roof:
- Roof age: Make sure to establish how old the roof is and how long ago the latest roof repairs were done. Be on the lookout for rust patches on a metal roof.
- Water stains: The easiest way to determine if a roof is leaking is to look for water stains, usually located on the ceilings. Another giveaway of a leaky roof would be fresh paint in unusual places, as if water damage was being covered up.
- Broken or missing shingles: If there are any broken or missing tiles or shingles, the roof is left exposed to water damage.
- Blocked gutters: If blocked gutters are not tended to, they could also lead to damage in the long run. Blocked gutters lead to the water leaking into the roof. Storm debris like leaves can easily be scooped out of the gutters enabling the water to flow more freely, so luckily there’s an easy fix.
The problem with plumbing is that problems aren’t always immediately visible. Water stains, mildew, loose tiles or sagging floors could indicate water leaks. Be sure to ask if there have ever been plumbing issues and how they were resolved.
When you’re viewing the house, run the water in the bathroom and kitchen. Check for leaks, water pressure and whether the water drains properly.
Depending on the age of the house you’re looking at, there will more than likely be a few electrical issues. Electrical systems that haven’t been updated regularly could be a potential fire hazard.
Knowing what to look for will help you determine if the wiring is still in decent working condition. For a start, check the main fuse box for any exposed wires. It’s advisable to hire an electrician to do a thorough and valid inspection that will give you an exact idea of what you’re up against.
Ready to Buy?
As excited as you may be when you are house hunting, always take the time to check the major issues that could potentially ruin the experience of finding your dream home. Fortunately, identifying any potential problems in advance will give you and the seller a chance to come to an agreement that benefits both parties!