Few homeowners would dispute that looking for their home is hard work from the get-go, from narrowing the list to completing the initial tour. While the visible characteristics of the home are important, it’s just as critical to look behind the scenes for problems that could present significant problems, or even barriers to purchase. Four of the most crucial areas include the roof, wiring, along with its HVAC system and structural integrity.
Problems with the Roof
If you see a lot of shingle granules in the gutters or near the downspouts, the roofing shingles may need replacing. Asphalt shingles tend to lose these granules as they reach the end of their lifetimes. Curled or misaligned shingles are another warning sign.
The age of a home sometimes indicates a lot about its wiring safety, although not always. If you notice the lights flicker or a circuit breaker trips while you’re visiting a property, insist on a thorough electrical inspection if you’re seriously considering the property. According to the electricians at Lowry Services, a circuit breaker that constantly trips could indicate an overloaded circuit or faulty wiring. Homes built between the late 1960s to the 1970s may have aluminum wiring that poses safety problems. Over time, the oxidation of the wires can overheat them, triggering electrical fires.
Worn Outdoor Condenser
Look over the outdoor condenser if the home has central air conditioning or a heat pump. Rust on the condenser or bent fins or a damaged refrigerant coil often indicate expensive problems. Damaged fins or a dirty refrigerant coil could point to a system replacement, especially if the system uses R-22 or Freon. The supply of these refrigerants is dwindling rapidly and the cost has increased substantially, and it’s usually better to replace than refill.
A pocket-size level is a small investment that could give you a big payoff when visiting homes for sale. Floors that slope can be a major issue that requires thousands of dollars to fix. They could sag because of a construction defect or result from foundation or structural problems. Regardless of the cause, buying a home with sagging floors could cost you a lot down the road.
Each of these issues with a home should signal a red flag. While repairs can be made, being aware of major issues will help you decide whether to pursue the property. Knowing what the problems are also gives you substantial leverage if you decide to move forward with a prospective home.
About the author: This is a contributed article for Realty Biz News