Whether house-hunting for the first time or the tenth, savvy buyers know how to prepare for – and make the most of – a real estate inspection.
With time restrictions currently in place for property inspections, , it’s more important than ever to use your allotted time wisely, ask the right questions and keep a keen eye out for potential issues with the property.
So what should you look for – and look out for?
BEFORE THE INSPECTION
Prepare a list of ‘must-haves’ and ‘deal-breakers’ before you attend the inspection. Having these clear in your mind will focus your attention and reduce the chance of being swayed by impressive styling and staging, and other marketing tactics designed to entice prospective buyers.
If you have a large family, for example, the practicalities of daily life will soon dim the excitement of a spacious back yard or great outdoor entertaining area if your new home has insufficient bedrooms or a poky kitchen.
As a smart buyer, you should also investigate the neighbourhood to see whether it meets your needs in terms of local amenities, transport links, schools and hospitals.
FROM THE KERB
There are a number of things you can discover about a property before you set foot inside. First, check the home’s orientation. North-facing properties can bear the brunt of the heat in summer. This can be a bonus if you are in a naturally cool climate, but if you are looking in an area that experiences hot summers, be prepared for the extra expense of cooling systems and big energy bills.
South-facing properties can have the opposite problem of being cold in winter, so think about what kind of home best suits your climate.
How close will you be to your neighbours and can they see into the property – is being close a problem? Is there a lot of traffic in the area? Signs of ongoing construction or evidence of parking congestion? These are potential issues that will take the shine off a property that looks perfect in an online listing.
TAKE NOTE OF FIRST IMPRESSIONS
What is the condition of the outside of the property? Are the gutters damaged or overflowing, with rusted downpipes? Is there a lot of overgrown vegetation or obvious signs of tree root damage?
When you first enter the property, make a note of the amount of natural light in each room. Any strange smells? What about the noise levels coming from neighbouring properties or the street? This is where it pays to inspect or drive past the property at different times of the day, in order to get a good overall idea of the environment.
WHAT TO LOOK OUT FOR
Cracking in the walls or ceiling, signs of mould or water damage in walls, floors, ceilings or skirting boards, evidence of pest damage, loose or faulty electrical switches, poor water pressure, windows or doors that stick – these may be signs of a property that is more trouble (and expense) than it’s worth.
Don’t be afraid to ask the real estate agent to turn on taps and open cupboards, shelves and doors to get a true indication of the condition of the property.
Make notes of anything or concern and take photos if you have permission, to review later when your initial first impressions have worn off.
If you’re not sure – attend another inspection, if possible, this time on a different day and at a different time. What looked great on a warm afternoon with little traffic around could be quite a different proposition on a cold, rainy day with a lot of traffic and noise.
If you interested in making an offer on the property, it’s very important to arrange an independent building and pest inspection to get the full picture of the condition of a property. Buyers who are making a written offer may also make a satisfactory building and pest inspection a condition of their offer.
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The Home Inspection Hub are the residential inspection professionals.
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- Owner Builder Defects (137B) Reports
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With over 20,000 inspections under our belt and an established reputation, The Home Inspection Hub provides peace of mind for the biggest purchase you will ever make.
Call us today on 1300 071 283 or email email@example.com and see how we can assist you in your home-buying journey.