A property can sometimes look perfect upon first impression, but there are often underlying issues that you may need to be aware of before you commit to a purchase. When viewing a home, don’t feel pressured or rushed to really have a good look around the property. Instead, take your time, move furniture around, ask questions, open doors and generally get a really good feel for the property.
Here are some things to look out for during a viewing:
If you can, take a look at the flashing around the chimney and keep an eye out for slipped slates or tiles on the roof, as it may mean that the roof will need replacing in the near future. It’s also a good idea to have a look at the guttering and assess whether it’s slipped down, is leaking, or generally looks like it needs replacing, as this can overflow and cause cracks or leaking in other areas of your home. Lastly, signs of subsidence such as cracks, and bowing in the exterior walls should be taken seriously, as this can be a sign of a deeper and significant structural issue.
Have a look around the interior for signs of damp, especially around the windows and concealed behind furniture. Damp is relatively easy to fix, however it’s important that you understand why it’s there so that you can know how to solve it. Next, you should assess the consumer unit (usually under the stairs), the boiler and wiring to see how up to date they are. The newer the better as there will be less likelihood that you will need to upgrade it in the near future.
None of these things are a disaster, and none of them mean that you shouldn’t necessarily buy a house. However, they are things you should be aware of before you commit, and also may be used as a bargaining chip to get some money taken off the asking price in order to carry out necessary repairs.