Home showings are always exciting, at least at first… After some initial research online, you’re more overwhelmed than ever. Do you want a two bedroom or a three? Is a lack of an island counter in the kitchen a deal breaker?
It’s time now to start visits and find the home you’re gonna live in for the next little while. Are you the type of buyer who let emotions run the show?
What do you look at first? Furniture? Paint? Granit countertops? Light fixtures?
As your Realtor, my job is to educate you and show you that no matter how beautiful the home show, our goal is to slip into the role of an inspector and look out for thing that could be wrong with the house we are looking at.
Here is what I recommend to look for:
1. A solid foundation
Checking the foundation is a tough one! But, luckily certain things can be spotted with the naked eye, like sloping floors or foundation cracks. If doors and windows don’t open and close smoothly, they might be misaligned or improperly installed. Does the curtain seem to move in the wind/breeze even if the window is closed? Do you feel a draft? If so, you found yourself a reason to negotiate a lower price IF you really like the rest of the home.
2. Decent basement and attic insulation
Insulation issues can’t be spotted in the photos, that’s why home showings are for. Let’s take a tour of the basement where you can see if there are any signs of damp or moist. If possible, let’s check the attic too, examine if there is any leakage coming from the roof.
3. Efficient heating and cooling
Heating is an essential part of a home, and if you are buying during these cold winter days, you get to see how it performs as soon as you walk into that home. Is it warm enough? Is every room heated? Checking air condition, on the other hand, works better in the summer, but you can at least see if it’s a newer A/C device, and perhaps, find online reviews to see if other consumers are satisfied with it.
4. No plumbing issues or leaks
To test water pressure, clogged drains and pipes for leaks, leave the water running simultaneously from all faucets for a while, plus, flush the toilet. If the faucets keep dripping after you turn them off or if the toilet keeps running after flushing, you'll know that there is a plumbing problem.
5. Not too high utility bills
Energy-efficient homes save energy and money in the long run, and that’s why everyone is looking for a home with proper heating, ventilation, insulation and great energy-saving appliances. To find out where the home stands at, I will ask the sellers to show you several heating, electricity and cooling bills. If the costs are above average for a home of that size, it may indicate that something consumes way more energy than it should.
After shuffling your tired feet through countless open houses and unfamiliar living rooms, we finally find “The One.” Congratulations! Let’s take the plunge, put in your bid and hope for the best.
Accepted offer! Now we NEED the home inspector to do his job and tell us if we choose well.
Finally, you can now breathe an all-encompassing sigh of relief, because this entire process is behind you. You will soon have a set of shiny new keys, a new place to call “home,”!