5 Often-Forgotten Things to Check When Buying a House

Written by Posted On Wednesday, 05 June 2019 10:56

Before the purchase of a house, many people look carefully at the floor plan, arrangement, and the features. But, looking beneath the surface can also be enlightening when it comes to a new home.

Sellers typically spend a lot of time prepping, staging and upgrading a house before it goes up for sale, especially when the market is tight. Your mission is to find out what they could be hiding beneath the glitz and glam.


Before you fall in love and make an offer, take time to look around and figure out if there is anything that goes beyond the photos that might cause you to run away fast.

Neglected Maintenance

If the paint is fading, faucets are leaking, and grass needs cut, then these could be the first of many maintenance tasks that the owner might have ignored. A homeowner that stays on top of these tasks will know that the chimney will need cleaning, the roof will need an inspection, the air filters might need to be changed as often as once per month, and the doors or windows might require re-caulking. If you can tell that these have not been done during your walk-through, the house might not be up to code.  

Water Hardness

It can also be worthwhile to test for hard water since approximately 85% of houses in the U.S. have hard water. Hard water can cause buildup on pipes and inefficiency in appliances, which will eventually require replacement. Water softener systems rely on salt to make an electrical response in the water, which extracts the hard minerals from the water before they enter the plumbing system. Houses already equipped with water softener systems are more efficient and cost-effective.


To check if the house might have mold, don't hesitate to open sink and bathroom cabinets discreetly. If there is a mold issue, water drains or pipes will have grey or black spots. Other signs of a serious problem are ceiling patches or black spots on the bathtub or sink faucet.


It's worthwhile to look beyond the curtains and to test out the windows. Try to open and close them. If they don't move easily, it could reveal major problems like a shifting foundation. Not always, though. Sometimes, incorrect installation is to blame for window problems. Regardless, new windows are a pricey fix.

Inadequate Ventilation

Homes that don't have proper ventilation inside usually have more condensation and moisture, which is the perfect environment for mold to grow. Since this can also be problematic for those with allergies, be sure to look for any unnecessary condensation in the house. Windows might have moisture buildup on them or paint might begin to peel or bubble near doors, windows, or vents.

Ultimately, when you're inspecting a home, don't treat the experience the same that you would when you're walking through an art gallery. The inspection should point out all of these issues, but if you can spot them early on, you can save yourself a lot of time in the long run.

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James Stevenson

Hi, My name is James and I've been involved in the property and real estate industry for 10 years now. I hope people will like to read about my thoughts and experiences in the industry and please contact me if you want to discuss my articles further!

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