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What Questions Do I Need to Ask Before Buying a Home?

If you have ever bought a home without any problems, please share your experience. Such knowledge would be best described in record books. In reality, most prospective buyers find an issue within the first few months of purchase.

To accurately detect trouble areas in the house you wish to buy, it is important that you know the right questions to inquire before making a purchase. That does not mean that all issues will be sorted once you ask, but you will have more information to adjust your financial boundaries accordingly. Additionally, getting reactions to these inquiries will assist you to polish up on the shortcomings. Look for the agent, the previous owner, and the neighboring community for helpful responses.

Answer: The Most Important Questions Have to Do With Structure and Utilities

The first question that should be asked is: “Are there any broken pipes?” Broken pipes are not a rare occurrence. In fact, water damage resulting from broken pipes is among the top leading causes of homeowner insurance litigations. In reference to the Insurance Information Institute, 22 percent of all insurance claims regard broken pipes.

A good home inspector, in most cases, tells if water damage has ever occurred. Additionally, the previous owner is mandated to disclose if any damage has ever occurred by the time of sale. Nevertheless, you should try the following steps just to make sure that there will be no excess moisture problems in the future. Ensure that exposed pipes have pipe insulation. Also check that all washing machine hoses are in good working condition. Replace if necessary. The big problem arising from water damages is the excess moisture issues you will not detect easily. Excess moisture issues can lead to mold growth.

The next question worth asking is how old is the roof. Realizing the approximate age of the roof will help the homebuyer understand how soon they will need to budget for replacement or repairs. A new roof can be quite a daunting task.

A common type of roof, regular asphalt shingles, ought to be repaired after two decades. Homeowners should remember to inquire the approximate age of the roof before making a purchase. Moreover, the homeowners should remember to apply the following guidelines to ensure that the shingles are in order.

  • Shingles look brittle and are beginning to crack and break. If roofing nails are exposed, a costly water leak is likely.
  • Bare spots appear with patches of protective granules worn away. This is a strong signal that the roofing needs to be replaced

Finally, the next important to ask is whether or not there have been pest problems or infestations. The previous owner is mandated to disclose such information while selling the house. However, even if the owner controlled the pests, and can provide enough proof, that does not mean that the pests have been eradicated.

Whatever conditions made this particular home a nice place for infestation in the first place might still be present. Additionally, most infestations are not confined to just one home; it might be a common problem for everyone in the neighborhood.

Be very proactive. This is because the average cost of controlling termite infestation rages between 1700 dollars and 3200 dollars for a 2500 square foot home. Necessary repairs to sheathing, framing, and siding can be quite expensive.

Additional Resources

The aforementioned questions offer just a brief insight into what homeowners should know about a home before buying it. There are many other resources around the internet that can assist prospective homebuyers. Below are some recommended resources.

  1. Forbes: The article by Forbes is basically trying to explain four important inquiries that potential homeowners should ask before purchasing a house. The article is authored by a member of the Forbes Real Estate Council, Kevin Miller; the council is constituted of executives in the real estate industry.
  2. National Association of Realtors: The article by National Association of Realtors highlights 10 questions homebuyers should ask before purchasing a house. The National Association of Realtors is a trade association for those working in the real estate industry. The association has over 1.1 million members including councils, societies, and NAR institutes involved in the real estate industry.
  3. Homeowners Alliance: The article by Homeowners Alliance provides clever questions that homebuyers should ask when buying. The Homeowners Alliance assists its members with questions they should ask when purchasing a house.