What are the most important things for a buyer to look for before closing the deal?
1st – Look For Safety Items
As a buyer, it is prudent to look for safety issues around the home. Some of these you will be able to easily observe and correct. Others are not readily visible to a buyer, such as electrical hazard in the attic or inside of the electrical panel. These types of issues generally discovered by a home inspection. As a buyer you want to be sure that you have GFCI protection in bathrooms, kitchen and other location where moisture exist.
2nd – Look For Costly Issues: the high ticket items
A. High Ticket Items
Try looking at a home as a set of components connected together. Some are inexpensive and easy to fix, others, if they have serious problems can be very expensive to correct.
- Roof replacement. Old plumbing that will need replacing
- Furnace or A/C issues, such as a furnace with a cracked heat ex-changer.
- Plumbing systems that are deteriorated, badly damaged and in need of being fully replaced.
B. Structural and geotechnical issues
Many structural issues can be corrected without great expense. However, there are a few that are so serious or server to correct that the cost may be half the cost of the house or more. It is these that should be identified before buying the home.
- Badly damaged foundations and stem walls
- Improperly engineered framing and construction
- Soil or slope problems that has caused significant damage to the structure
Four Step Process
- Have a home inspection
- Surf this site to get ideas on what to look for
- Go through the house thoroughly
- Search the site for information on what you saw, what the home inspection reported, and on what the sellers and agents disclosed
When in doubt, get a cost estimate
Estimating how much a fix or repair can cost is difficult for most buyers to make. However, a quick phone call to a contractor can often give you an estimate within minutes, or they may need to stop by and take a quick look before giving you an estimate.