If you are considering the purchase of a new home, you will want to do your due diligence to make sure you are buying a new home and not a money pit. Before any financial institution approves you for a home loan, a home inspection will be required to confirm that the property is worth the asking price. If it is not, the bank will not lend you the amount of the asking price. Instead, they will lend the amount that the property is appraised for and you will need to cover the remaining balance. Understanding what an inspector may be looking for prior to hiring one will save you time and money. Here are 5 things to consider when buying a new home.
The last thing you want is a leaky roof when you move into your new home, and an inspector will definitely climb up there and value the roof into the estimate. Make sure when you and your realtor are discussing the purchase of the home with the homeowner that you ask about the roof. When was the last time it was replaced, does it have any leaks, and if it has been replaced is it still under warranty? If the home has solar panels, make sure you know if those panels are leased or owned. You don’t want to inherit a massive lease on a solar system you may not want.
Check The Electrical
Many don’t consider that some outlets and light switches may not function properly in the home. Discovering this while you are trying to integrate new technology into your home after you move in can be quite annoying. Taking the time to check the outlets and light switched to confirm they work will be beneficial for the appraisal and for negotiations. Ceiling fans and appliances should all be wired safely and working properly. This is especially important if you have kids.
You can hire an Energy-Efficient specialist to check the efficiency of the home. Windows, doors, and air conditioning units are all things that should be checked for efficiency. Attic insulation and ductwork should also be inspected for leaks and performance. An inspector may not value the property properly if they are unaware of energy efficient upgrades. If the homeowner has invested in a Pearl Certification, then the value of the appraisal should be substantially higher.
Check the attic and crawl spaces for signs of rodents and insect infestations. Attic spaces may show signs of rodent feces, nesting, chewed cables, scratching, and entry points through the roof or siding. Crawl spaces and basements may also have signs of this. Bees have been known to nest in walls and attic space as well as nocturnal animals like bats. Most of these problems can be resolved with relocation or pest extermination services. The most important insect to be cautious of is the termite. Termites cause billions of dollars per year in damage to homes. Signs of termite damage in the attic and crawl spaces may be very noticeable, but it is possible that an infestation hasn’t spread to the visible parts of the property. It’s important that in addition to a home appraisal, you also hire a termite inspection technician.
With so many opportunities for homes to have water damage, it’s important that you thoroughly inspect the property for water damage. Look under the sinks, near shower stalls, the laundry room, dishwasher, and near the water heater. You will also want to check the ceiling sheetrock to make sure there is no water damage that is the result of rains and roof damage. You can also check the plumbing if accessible on the property.
Buying a new home is potentially the biggest investment of your life, you will want to know what you’re looking for, don’t rush it. You will want to hire the right realtor to work with you and help you make the right purchasing decisions. Investigate absolutely everything and make sure the home and the neighborhood is right for you. Once you purchase the home, it can be just as much of a process to sell it, so make sure you do it right the first time so you don’t have to do it again anytime soon. Happy home hunting, and good luck to you!