Being a former contractor, there are a few tools I use when assisting clients with finding a home. These tools can be used when searching for a new home to buy or assessing the current value of your home amenities. Some agents rely on comparables only from the MLS. Why? Because this is what they been trained to do. Other agents may see flaws within a house, but not necessarilyable to identify potential issues.
Each home is unique in its own way, however, the structure and foundation are simply wood and concrete. The very basics of a home always start the same. A builder will add in electrical, plumbing, HVAC- close the walls up, paint it and then install the finishing look. So, how can a homebuyer see past the sealed up walls and paint and see into the condition of the structure?
Here are (5) warning signs I look for when walking into any house:
1)The driveway and walkways- This is where you can get the 1st indication of potential issues, Fact ( concrete cracks) but if I see raised sections or separation in the concrete, this tells me that either trees have become a problem or the foundation is movedsepreate from the hardscape.
2) Ceilings – Cracks in the ceiling and walls, most common areas are above door jams. This typically is a tell tale sign of settling of the foundation or a part of it.
3) Windows- I’ll look at each window sill for water damage at the bottom corners. This is a sign of settling or poor installation.
4) Next, I will look closely at the base boards throughout the house. I am contractor at heart and always appreciate the quality of a finish carpentry who takes pride in his work, but beyond the admiration of baseboards and crown molding, it is important to look for any “peppering”. This is a result of either termites or carpenter ants busy at work on the structure of the home.
5) Lastly, I look for any ceiling repairs. Ceiling repairs are extremely hard to hide as it takes an incredibly talented tradesman to be able to blend a drywall repair in a ceiling without seams or fluctuates in texture showing. A ceiling repair could be an indication of a previous water leak.
All in all- if any of these items above standout in homes I tour with my clients, these are areas to give extra attention to during the home touring phase.