Buying a house is one of the largest purchases that most Americans ever make, and for most families their primary residence is their largest asset. In addition, it is also the place they call home. For these reasons, it is critical to take time when making the decision of which house to buy, and carefully consider the pros and cons of this decision.
Unfortunately, too many people pay attention to design features such as granite countertops and very little attention to the structural stability and safety of the home. In fact, very few homebuyers stop to consider if the home they are thinking about buying is infested with pests such as termites, if it is prone to flooding, or even if it is in good physical condition.
Pest infestation is a commonly overlooked problem with many homes that can result in a homeowner having some of their most treasured possessions destroyed. Getting rid of pests such as spiders or termites can cost thousands of dollars, takes months of time, and the result after the bugs are gone is thousands of dollars of property damage that is rarely covered by insurance.
Fortunately, there is a very easy way to avoid this problem. A qualified home inspector or exterminator can ensure that there are no pest problems in the home. This person will also be able to tell you if there is any damage that has been caused by a previous infestation. In the case that a home does have uninvited visitors, carefully consider if the damage they have caused is repairable and the cost of those repairs.
Do not make the mistake of agreeing to take on a house that needs repairs you cannot afford. No matter how good of a deal a property is, if you do not have the cash on hand to make repairs that are immediately needed, the property will quickly loose value. Furthermore, extensive damage that is not quickly repaired can lead to even further damage and more costly repairs.
The next factor that few homeowners take into consideration is a property’s potential to flood. While the fact that a property is in a flood zone has to be disclosed when the property is purchased, other factors that can affect flooding do not have to be disclosed. Fortunately, there are a few ways for people to determine if a piece of real estate is prone to flooding. While these methods are not foolproof, they can help you to avoid a major mistake.
Start by walking around the yard of the property at least a week after a rainfall. If any part of the ground is still wet, you can assume that the property will be prone to flooding during a bad storm. If the property has a basement, look carefully for signs of flood damage. Also ask for details about the sump pump. Sump pumps that have been replaced frequently may indicate that a property is prone to flooding.