Buying a new home is an exciting time for anyone, but there are dangers. Often, home buyers get caught up in the excitement, and without a guide to buying a house, they overlook important things that could mean the house is a money pit.
To help guide you in your home buying journey, here are 5 home buying mistakes to avoid:
Home Buying Mistake #1: Not Having the Roof Checked
It’s a standard practice to have a home inspector look over your home prior to finalizing the sale. While this is important, you should remember that home inspectors are usually generalists. You’ll want some things to be looked at by a specialist.
The most important part of your home to have a specialist look at is the roof. It’s the first line of defense between your home and the elements, and if there are any problems, it could cause major headaches down the road.
A roof inspector can help you identify any potential problems so you can be aware of them before you sign the paperwork. Most reputable roofing contractors will inspect your new home’s roof for free or for a small fee.
It’s well worth the investment.
Home Buying Mistake #2: Not Having the Home Inspected for Insects
Another area you should bring in a specialist for is insects. All homes have them; they’re simply a fact of life.
There are nuisance insects, like cockroaches and ants, which can make the home unpleasant to live in. There are bugs that affect the safety of you and your family, like fire ants and yellow jackets. And, of course, there are insects that impact the structural integrity of your home, like termites and carpenter ants.
You’ll want to know what bugs you’re dealing with before you move in, and a professional exterminator can help you.
Home Buying Mistake #3: Not Asking About Recent Projects
This is something many home buyers don’t even think to do. Sure, sellers are all too willing to tell you about the upgraded kitchen or bathroom. But you should be sure to ask about any other projects or repairs that were done in the last few years.
Ask about if the roof or siding is original, or if any remodeling has been done. Ask about any repairs or replacement to mechanical systems. Nothing is out of bounds.
If any work has taken place, make sure to get any documentation of warranties, and make sure the warranties are transferrable to you as the next homeowner.
Home Buying Mistake #4: Not Taking Pictures
It’s always a good idea to take your own pictures and document the home you’re trying to buy. Whether it’s photos of potential problem areas your inspectors point out, or areas you notice you might want to improve, take as many photos as you can.
You can then share them with general contractors so they can provide their opinions on the quality of workmanship on the house, what improvements can be made, and what it will cost. Their opinions could save future headaches and give you confidence in your investment.
Home Buying Mistake #5: Not Asking Questions
Buying a home is a huge investment. Your investment.
It’s not the sellers’ investment anymore, so they may not give you every detail unless you ask for it. You are entitled to ask the sellers, their agent, and your agent anything.
The only dumb questions are the ones you don’t ask.
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