Top 5 deal breakers for home buyers and advice to help you.
Finally you did it. All the hard work has paid off. You find the house in the neighborhood you love, in the perfect school district. You are already planning the summer barbeques and camping nights under the stars with the kids. It’s time to act fast, your realtor is telling you to act NOW!
The purchase of a home is often the largest investment that a buyer will make in his/her lifetime. Often, buyers will be making the largest discussion in their life without knowing all the facts about a property. During the buyers home inspection process, deficiencies are always found. When both parties cannot come to agreement on who should pay for the deficiencies, the buyer is left paying for the appraisal and home inspection.
What do you do?
A home inspector will always find issues with a house, many that you can live with. However, there are some issues that can be considered “deal breakers” to watch out for. Here is a list of the top 5 signs to watch out for before you take another step forward.
- Bad Foundation
There will be cracks in every house no matter the age. Houses are like people. The older they get the more they start to settle and start to crack. Big gaping cracks in the concrete or in the basement are red flags. This is usually a sign that the house is shifting from its foundation and sinking into the ground. This is usually due to poor soil conditions or because water is not draining properly. You also want to keep an eye out for moisture stains on walls and floors. This can be another sign that water is getting into the foundation.
2. Poor Electrical Wiring
There are many electrical issues that the untrained eye might not spot. An electrical panel can look perfectly fine from the outside but there are brands known for having major issues. For example Federal Pacific or Zinsco. Aluminum wiring was very common in houses in the 1960’s. Aluminum will expand and contract during the winter and summer months, making the connections loosen with time. These discoveries can lead to very expensive repairs.
3. Roof Damage
A good roof can last between 25 and 30 years, but a bad roof will only last a fraction of that time. The climate in Colorado can be extremely unforgiving to roofs. A roof with no protection sits under the hot sun and gets bombarded with hail and hurricane-like winds for years. The roof takes a beating to say the least. A bad roof can cost thousands of dollars to fix or replace. When looking for a house make sure to look at the roof and see if its nice and even with no shingles missing.
Everyone knows that mold is bad and can cause major health damage. Mold needs three things to grow. The first is nutrients. These nutrients can come from the wood in the house or from drywall. The second is moisture. This can be caused by high humidity in the air, windows leaking, and cracks in the foundation just to name a few. If there is a mold suspected, it is recommended to have it tested and taken care of ASAP.
Asbestos is well known for causing major health problems in the long run. What you should worry about is if the inspector finds crumbling asbestos around the pipes. Asbestos can be found in almost everything from flooring, insulation, and exterior wall coverings.
In order to make a smarter offer on a house you should,
- Look for houses that have a pre-Inspection. Seeing the home inspection report before you make an offer will help educate you about the house.
- Use inspectedhouses.com. This is a great site to find pre-inspected houses. You can google the address with “inspection” and the pre inspected house should show up.
- Hire Above All Inspection to do a “walk and talk” inspection. For a small fee, a trained home inspector will come out and walk the house with you. There will be no report but it will help to find the “major” stuff.
- Look for the 5 deal breakers. Walk the house and look for the top 5 deal breakers. Talk to the real estate agent or the homeowner about any issue that comes up.
Jim West/ Above All Inspection