Buying a home is never easy. There are red flags to watch out for and things to pay close attention to in order to not fall victim to one’s over eagerness when buying a home.
It is almost a given that in competitive markets or luxury home open houses, the home you walk into has been styled, upgraded, and deep cleaned for it to be shown in the best light possible. What can you do then to make sure that you don’t get dazzled? Take note of the following warning signs and try to stay away from homes sporting them.
Clearly Visible Mould
Signs of mould may be difficult to catch if you don’t know where to look for them, but mould that is clearly visible even to the untrained eye is not just a sign of neglect but of a huge health risk as well. Patches of green, gray, and black in areas near faucets or caulked surfaces can just be the tip of the iceberg for a home-wide mould issue.
Wonky windows can be an installation issue or a sign of a bigger problem such as a foundation issue. Be sure to check why the windows don’t look right before signing any papers.
The House Smells Too Good
There is nothing wrong with a faint scent of vanilla, lemons, or baked goods; but if the house smells too new and too artificial, there is a huge chance that the excessive use of scents is for masking an issue that the home seller is trying to hide.
House Too Near a Body of Water
Having a lake, creek, or the beach nearby may seem like a dream come true; but that is far from reality when it comes to dealing with bad weather and possible water damage. Floods and erosion are real factors to consider.
Crooked tiling with uneven gaps either mean a DIY job or a poorly done home improvement project. This can be a sign of other similarly done improvements in other areas of the home which can translate to huge repair bills in the future.
Mould, allergies, and moisture issues can all result from improper ventilation. A home may feel alright but if you look closely for peeling paint on walls and doors, discolouration on walls, and rusting in vents, then the home definitely has a problem with ventilation.
Foundation issues are often not readily seen and can manifest as hairline cracks in walls that can easily be covered by artwork or huge furniture. Be sure you watch out for uneven floors (use a marble if you have to), lopsided framing, and cracks in walls.
Signs of Water Damage
Watermarks or water lines, standing water, and lines that don’t work during an open house can be indicators of water damage, busted pipes, and leaks. Rusted piping is a huge warning sign too.
Indicators of Neglect
Busted bulbs, peeling paint, broken hinges, long grass, and leaking faucets mean that the homeowner may be in the habit of neglecting necessary house maintenance which can result to bigger problems in the future.
New Cosmetic Enhancements
Mould can be covered by a new coat of paint, rugs can hide damaged floors, and an oversized artwork can be hiding a cracked wall. Make sure to look into these closely and have a home inspector take a professional look.
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