Hungry homebuyers will want to know the ins and outs of your home before buying it. As a seller you should be looking for these things before you even put your home on the market.
“Industry experts argue that when it comes to home inspections, many owners go through a minimum amount of 33 physical problems when listing their properties for sale. Let’s have a closer look at 10 of the most common. Know them in advance as this will help you fix them ahead of time and sell your home for top dollar.”
Should I worry that the roof will start leaking? Is the home properly wired? Can I trust the plumbing is installed correctly? These are just three of a multitude of questions buyers might be asking themselves when searching to buy a home. Buyers, espescially first time homebuyers will want to hear a professional answer for each question or concern. Experts in real estate claim that when it comes to home inspections, many owners go through a minimum amount of 33 physical problems when listing their properties for sale. We’re presenting you 10 of the most common, which if are not identified and dealt with on time can cost you a lot of time as a seller sitting on the market, and as a buyer if not found in the inspections phase can cost a lot of money on repairs later down the road.
Some of them can be spotted by performing a pre-inspection all on your own, but only if you can fully grasp what needs to be done. Knowing what to look for will help you tackle problems before the become major issues. You’ll also be able to fix them before they pop up on the buyers inspection report, where not only will they cost you money to fix, they might also cost you a buyer or more time to sell the home and even perhaps having to lower the asking price, because you dont have the time or the will to fix them if you are under contract.
1. FAULTY PLUMBING
Faulty plumbing can easily manifest as clogging or leaking. A visual inspection of your plumbing is everything you need to detect leaks on time. An inspector turns on all faucets, gauges the pressure of the water and then flushes the toilets and checks for leaks or slow drains. If there’s dirty water coming out of a faucet, it might be an indication of rusting pipes which might point to severe issues in the piping system as well as issues with water quality.
2. INADEQUATE ELECTRICAL WIRING
Most homes require an electrical service of at least 100 amps. This is also the minimum panel amperage required by the National Electrical Code (NEC). A 100-amp service panel will typically provide enough power for a medium-sized home that includes several 240-volt appliances and central air-conditioning. As for the wires, these should be made of copper. Home inspectors will most likely check the plugs, wire boxes and fuse box for indications of improper wiring and circuits, because if improperly wired these can all lead to a potential fire hazard.
3. POORLY MAINTAINED OR FAULTY COOLING AND HEATING SYSTEMS
Dysfunctional heating and cooling systems or insufficient insulation are clear signs of poor maintenance or negligence. They can lead to high energy bills and even system failure. Even though older systems that have been well maintained and damage free can last for years to come, an inspector will most likely want to check to make sure your cooling and heating systems are in working order and have been maintained consistently and correctly. Keeping systems free of dirt , consistent maintenance and replacement of filters and periodic replacing of damaged or worn out parts will make the inspection go smooth and worry free.
4. Survey and Permitting Issues
Make sure to include a request for an updated property survey and of course a permit search. Most title companies or real estate lawyers will request these, but make sure they are requested. This will help you know the boundaries of your property. In case of an outdated survey, or lack of permit searches, you may come across problems such as… hidden structural changes or a new fence put up by a neighbor on your property line, a door turned into a window without permits, or a structural wall within the house that was removed and also not permitted, and possibly more.
5. Roofing Issues
You will also want a roofing inspection. Weather issues, improper insulation, lack of ventilation and even vapor barriers can trigger moisture, mildew, water leakage and mold up in the attic. All this can trigger premature wearing of your home’s roof decks, shingles or other building materials and structure. The overall cost to fix everything can get very expensive depending on the issue. A full roof replacement can easily cost over $8,000.00-$20,000 for a standard 1500 sqft home. Inspectors will also offer Wind Mitigation inspections to see if your roof is up to recent codes or standards for wind and storm resistance. This inspection if passed can help make your home owners insurance much cheaper.
6. ROTTED OR DECAYED WOOD
Rotted or decayed wood can happen in lots of places around a home, including the window frames, decks, doors, siding, and fences. An inspector will check to see whether or not wood or framed areas are rotted, decayed or damaged. You can also and should ask for a wood destroying organism report. (It is an inspection for termites, mold, fungus, and other organisms that can destroy the wood in and around your home.) For buyers using FHA/VA/USDA loans… they must have a wood destroying organism inspection report as well so be ready and have your own done first.
7. DAMAGED OR IMPROPER BRICK WORK
Repairing brick work can be pricey…although if you postpone repairs, they can cause serious problems with moisture and water penetrating your house. Which in time, this could trigger additional issues such as mold, cracking walls, clogged chimney due to fallen bricks or an unstable chimney that may fall onto your home’s roof. Rebuilding a chimney or wall can be pricey; that’s why it might be a good idea to check the brick work regularly, and make sure to repair everything in advance if you see even the slightest bit of damage.
8. OVERUSED OR UNSAFE ELECTRICAL SYSTEMS
Generally speaking, fire hazards happen when circuits are over charged with more amperage than recommended. This is different than where we discussed faulty wiring earlier… Most homes have circuits with 15 amps and newer homes have 20 amp circuits, although for larger appliances you might need circuits with higher capabilities. Know that it can cost a fortune to rewire and or replace an electrical panel and appliances running on wrong amperages. If your home has too many things plugged into the same outlet using outlet strips of more than 4 items it can be a major hazard if your home has older electrical panels and or wiring. The inspector will definitely check the circuits and appliance connections for items up to code and for worn and or defective items.
9. APPROPRIATE SECURITY FEATURES
A home inspector will search for more than just a security system if you have one. He will also assess basic safety features to make sure your home is protected. Patio doors and locks, window locks, dead bolts at the doors, carbon monoxide detectors and smoke detectors must all be in working order to make sure that all rooms in the house are protected. These are the basic items that must be present and working for basic home protection.
10. FOUNDATION & STRUCTURAL PROBLEMS
Home inspectors will also look for foundation and structural issues inside or outside of your home. Cracks in walls in the corners and step cracks wider than ¼ of an inch wide may be a structural issue or potential one. Settlement issues can also creep up over the years. If the home settles and the ground gives way slightly… issues in the foundation of the home may happen. Cracks in the ceiling that happen mysteriously with no leaks or heat issues can also be a sign of foundation issues. The inspector will check all of these and also check to see if floors are level if he sees something suspicious. There are many fixes to these problems and they may cost alot, but if ignored can cost tens of thousands of dollars to fix. They could also cost you a great buyer or even precious time off the market if you dont find them before a potential buyer does.
These are things to look out for either before you sell your home or when touring a potential home if you are a buyer. It is way better for you to find these issues before a buer does…once a buyer see one issue they will start to look at your home moch closer and more suspiciously wondering what else is wrong with the home.
Your inspector will check all these things for you, but if you are aware of the things they are looking for you can be on the look out for yourself either while looking at homes or getting ready to sell your home.
I would love to help you on your home buying or selling journey. Let me know if you have more questions about this or any other topics in Real Estate.
Search here for Orlando Homes For Sale– Todd Mowry Realtor. Specializing in Real Estate in Orlando, Winter Park, Maitland, Waterford Lakes and surrounding
communities. I have over 10 years of experience in advising buyers and sellers on how to make the most well informed decisions for themselves. I believe in blunt honesty and act as a guide to help make the transaction as easy as can be and to get buyers and sellers everything and every dollar possible. Call or text me at 407-435-5220 even if you just need to ask a question from an experienced and dependable Realtor.