Buying an older home seems like a romantic proposition. Anyone fond of a good antique knows the nostalgic appeal of an old home, especially since this kind of house has unique character traits and historical features that most modern homes don’t have. Spacious wood-burning fireplaces, intricate wood trimmings, and moldings– and don’t get us started on those ceilings with rustic wood beams!
Indeed, it would be so easy to hastily put your money down for one of these ancient gems without doing any research simply for those features alone. But, if you’re a smart home buyer, you’ll know that a thorough investigation should undergo before buying an older home. How do we buy a home with overflowing beauty and historic character without falling into a money pit full of problematic repairs, you ask? Check out these nine tips and save yourself from a never-ending nightmare:
Two inspections save you from big misses
One inspector may catch a lot of important items, but he’ll surely have a few big misses, which could potentially add up to some serious dollars in the long run. To make sure that you’re spending your hard-earned money on a good investment, shelling out another $600 or so for a second inspection is a good idea. If the report shows anything structural, it’s best to have an engineer before buying to know all repairs needed upfront.
Don’t forget the water filtration systems
Are you buying a house with well water? Yeah, I’d think twice before signing those sale papers. A good water filtration system costs several thousands of dollars, and if you’ve got stinky well water in your property, you’ll surely need one, period. It’s also good to ask what the yearly maintenance costs are when selecting a system that works best for your home.
Watch out for rodent and bat infestations
If you think bats and rodents aren’t such a big deal, well, think again! Bats are endangered species, and even if you’ve got 200 bats hiding in your attic, you’re not allowed to kill them! But you can kick them out at the END OF SUMMER– if you can. You’ll also have to pay for cleaning their poop, which, if disturbed, is toxic. A critical miss during the inspection could cost you thousands to remediate, so carefully check for bat poop and mice poop before you buy an older home.
Check for lead paint
If you’re buying an old home, it’s inevitable to deal with lead paint. And if you have children, this could (or couldn’t) be a big deal. While most of the remediation work can be done by hardcore DIY-ers, it’s a long haul, so to avoid this inconvenience, check your window casings and door frames carefully for chipping paint or rubbing paint. Have your inspector test it and go from there.
Mold, mold, mold
Most people get bad migraines from mold, and if your prospective home sits empty without good circulation, there’s probably mold in living quarters or basement and attics. The thing is, mold remediation can be very expensive, and sometimes you won’t have an option to remove materials since mold can spread all over your beams and pipes. Be more vigilant in checking for mold, and your health and wallet will thank you for it.
Roof leaks, eek!
Have roof issues with your prospective home? Get two opinions for it! Most people will have a different diagnosis when checking roof leaks, so it’s best to have it checked thoroughly before spending for repairs. Also, if you see signs of moisture or mold– run! Moisture will make paint peel, and if you have one area in the house with leaks, it’ll lead to much further damage and expenses, especially if you don’t know where the source is located!
Remember, heating a big house is EXPENSIVE. If you pay for a home without any insulation and live in a colder climate, expect to spend your life savings on it. Your oil bill will love you for it later.
Windows and screens
If your prospective home still has its original windows, make sure to add the expense of putting screens and storm windows on your bill, plus weather stripping! It’ll be expensive but so worth it!
Wall and floor conditions
Check your walls and floors for hidden blunders. Some horror stories include wallpapers under paint, which will take forever to remove. Yikes! Remember that it’s not just a matter of throwing up a simple coat of paint– they all need refinishing, even your floors! Look at these things when you walk through the house before signing those papers!
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If you’re looking at buying💸 an older home🏚 for its romantically unique appeal, a thorough investigation will be your best friend!🧐
Avoid falling into a money pit full of problematic repairs🥴– consider these 9⃣ things before putting your life’s worth of savings down for an older home.💲💲
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