You know what they say, if something sounds too good to be true, it usually is. This philosophy should especially be borne in mind when making a large purchase such as a vehicle or a house.
If you fail to properly inspect and evaluate your purchase, don’t be surprised if you end up with something that is less than stellar.
It is important to understand how the real estate market works. For many property owners, there are no plans to manage the property long-term or even to keep it long-term. These people are constantly looking to sell what they have for a high price and move up the ladder to a more valuable property.
They are looking for a “mark” exactly like you.
If you allow yourself to be a mark, you are basically just helping someone else get richer at your expense. Who can afford to do that?
When evaluating a prospective buy, the first thing you should do is inspect the place for pests. A visual inspection can be done on your own to determine if the place has any obvious infestations. While you are here, be on the lookout for other problems.
If you don’t see anything obvious, you should call a qualified pest control agency like Moxie Pest Control in VA. They can set up a time to inspect the property for any and all signs of infestation.
The two main pests to be on the lookout for would be termites and bedbugs. Termites are obviously a huge problem because they damage the property, while bedbugs are incredibly hard to get rid of and impossible to tolerate. Cockroaches can also be a deal-breaker if the infestation is bad enough.
Naturally, your next step will be to evaluate the plumbing and electrical systems. Small problems in the plumbing or the wiring may not be a deal-breaker, depending on how expensive or difficult it will be to repair them.
However, major problems can translate into major expenses. If significant problems are found with the electrical system or the plumbing, you should try to convince the seller to reduce their price a little bit.
Remember to find a good electrical contractor to do any work that you might require. Only a licensed professional will be able to adequately ensure that you are in compliance with all relevant codes and regulations.
One thing to look out for is old houses with copper pipes. Most of the time, these will have to be completely replaced. It is a time-consuming and expensive process to change the entire plumbing system of an old house, so take this into account also when negotiating the price.
Another thing to consider is home security. This is particularly an issue if you happen to live in a high-crime area.
Look around the outside of your home and consider how easy or difficult it would be to break in. If the place has old single-pane windows, you will want to replace them, both for security reasons and to increase your energy efficiency. Think about how your home alarm system works, and whether or not the structure and layout of this house will be helpful or a hindrance.
If you use security cameras (and you should), you should consider how many cameras you will need, and how many you presently have.
All of these issues are important, but you also need to make sure that the house you are buying is structurally sound to begin with. It won’t do you any good to have a house that is free of termites and bugs or to have a perfectly updated plumbing and electrical system if the house is rotting around you.
You will need to get a state-approved building inspector to come in and thoroughly inspect the place.
Naturally, a lot is riding on this inspection. This particular inspection can make or break a sale.
When inspecting any house, it is important to keep an eye out for leaks or water damage. The speed with which water damage can ruin a home is sometimes amazing.
There are houses on the market that are over a century old and yet are still in great shape. The difference between these houses and those that have rotted away lies in how well they have been protected from water damage.