When house hunting, it’s important to know the difference between a big deal, and a little deal. Hideous wallpaper? Not a deal breaker. Cracked foundation? Deal breaker. It’s important to have a hard line on “needs,” and to be aware that you may not get all your “wants.” Knowing what to look for, and what to overlook, can make your house hunting experience a lot less stressful. While buying a house is a very complicated, important decision… here is a list of 3 things to consider during your search – that you may not have considered!
Appearances can be deceiving!
Just because something looks ugly, doesn’t mean you can’t easily transform it. Outdated kitchen counters or an orange shag carpet are easily replaced – so keep an open mind, and focus on the quality of the structure… because something may look beautiful and functional, but that doesn’t mean issues aren’t lurking in the shadows. Oftentimes, issues such as mold, water damage and old wiring are given the “quick fix” by the current home owner in an attempt to cover them up rather than fix them before the open house. So, ALWAYS get a thorough inspection to ensure your home is safe and functional before making any decisions.
Use All Your Senses
Get a funky whiff of something in or outside the house? Excessive mold, septic issues, gas leaks and more are easily identified by the SMELL. Of course, during an open house, the seller will do their best to mask these stinky problems. If you walk in and the “fresh baked cookies” plug-in smell is overpowering your senses… start asking questions immediately. You’re entitled to knowing as much information about your potential investment as possible – so ask away!
It’s Not Always What’s on the Inside That Counts
Take note of what’s going on outside your home. There are plenty of things to consider, such as:
- How busy is the street? High through traffic can be disruptive or even dangerous
- How close are the neighbors? If peace, quiet and privacy are important to you, this is a biggie. Also, NEVER assume when it comes to property lines… double check and request documentation when considering major landscaping, installing a fence, etc.
- Learn as much as you can about potential “acts of God” in your home’s immediate area – is your house in a place that’s prone to flooding or wildfires?
What is some of the best advice, or lessons learned during YOUR home search? Share below!