The home buyer’s checklist: What to look out for when you buy a house

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buy a house

It’s one of the most exciting life events you will experience, but at the same time this is probably the most expensive thing you will ever buy in your life. In short, buying a house is something of a rollercoaster ride, that takes into account a lot of decisions made by both the heart and the head.

As the title might have given away somewhat, today’s post is all about swaying towards making the right decisions with your head. Sure, feel free to fall in love with a home, but when it comes to checking certain elements of it you should keep in mind a few pointers. Let’s take a look at some of these in-detail.

Is there a home warranty plan in place?

If the answer to the above is a yes, it will alleviate a lot of concerns in relation to buying a home. A quick look at what is covered in a home buyer warranty will reveal that these plans tend to cover everything from HVAC systems right the way to plumbing. In other words, if any of the major systems in your home fail, there is something to safeguard you somewhat.

If you don’t have a home warranty plan, it’s not the end of the world – but you do have to be a little more vigilant.

What is the state of the roof?

It’s easy to get lost in the moment whilst viewing a prospective new home, and perhaps focus on the “luxuries” that it has to bring. By luxuries, we are referring to the likes of brand-new bathrooms and kitchens which really can bring the wow-factor to a home.

However, take a step back, and cast your eyes over the roof. Sure, you are not a surveyor, but you will be able to spot if there are any signs of damage. This might be various parts of it dipping, or even lots of tiles missing. If you do spot these signs, it might be time to investigate further or even negotiate on your purchase price.

What surrounds the house?

Sometimes, it’s not all about the house itself. Sometimes, you’ve got to look further afield, and try and spot signs on the land that surrounds it.

This might involve a bit of desktop research, possibly involving an external company. You need to try and find out if there have been any natural problems that have hurt the area in the past. By this we mean the likes of flooding or wildfires, which can have obvious repercussions.

It’s also worth looking at the land from a legal perspective. If you are going to share a driveway, how is this going to work? What about fences; who is going to be responsible for the upkeep of them?

Trust your sense of smell

Sometimes, it might come down to something as simple as your sense of smell. Smell cigarettes or pets? You might have to look around for other signs of wear and tear. What about sewage? It stands to reason that this might suggest you have a drainage problem, and further investigation is required.

In short, open up your mind to all possibilities. This is the most expensive thing you will buy, so you have to be extra cautious on every element that you come across.

Images from Living Levels by Oza Sabbeth Architects – See the full story here