When you're in the market for a home, you want to make sure that you don't end up buying someone else's headaches. That can be difficult to do, especially when the homeowner isn't willing to be forthcoming about defects in the home. That's when it becomes crucial that you have a good eye. You need to keep an eye out for defects that the owner might be trying to hide. Once you've narrowed your choices down to one or two homes, it's a good idea to spring for a home inspection. However, keeping an eye out for issues during your tours will help you avoid putting a home with major defects on to your list in the first place. To help you weed out the defects while you're shopping for a home, here are three issues you should keep your eye out for when looking for real estate for sale:
There are Troubles Under Foot
Homeowners aren't going to tell you right off the bat that their home has problems with the foundation. Luckily, foundation problems are easy to identify when you know what you're looking for. While you're walking through the house, pay attention to the way the floor feels beneath your feet. If you feel uneven edges under the carpet, or you can see visible gaps under the vinyl flooring, the owners are hiding foundation damage. You should also open and close all the doors. If they get stuck or don't latch properly, you're looking at further evidence of foundation troubles.
There are Termites Hiding in the Walls
There's no such thing as a "minor" termite problem. If a home you're looking at has termites, that's a major problem that you don't want to get stuck with. Termites might be private pests, meaning they like to hide, but they do tend to leave some very visible clues to their whereabouts. Check the windowsills, and along the baseboards, for discarded bug wings. While you're outside, get a close look at the foundation. If you see what looks like tiny burrows in the dirt along the edges of the foundation, or you find structures that look like tiny mud tunnels on the wood, the house you're looking at has termites.
There are Heating and Cooling Problems
There's nothing fun about buying a home only to discover that the heater or air conditioner don't work properly. Unfortunately, depending on when you purchase your home, you won't find out about some problems until the next season comes along. That's why you need to test the heating and air conditioning units before you purchase a home. Ask the homeowners to run the heater and air conditioner through one full cycle each while you're in the house. This will allow you to listen for odd noises, smell for odd odors, and check the air pressure through the vents.