Moving home is exciting. Whether it’s for work, because your family is expanding, or simply because you want a fresh start (or all of the above), searching for a new home is a great opportunity to get exactly what you want. Of course, some compromises will need to be made – there are no perfect properties, even if your budget is a large one – but there are some things that you will need to look out for and be aware of when you are viewing a property, no matter what you are looking for and where you are looking.
Damp can cause untold damage to a property, and therefore should be something to watch out for when you are viewing different potential homes. If the property has been empty for a while then there is more chance of finding damp, but even if it has been lived in, or is still lived in, it could be there.
Look out for plaster or paint flaking from the walls and ceiling, and watermarks on the walls too. If there is wallpaper, is it peeling? Is there a musty smell in the house? Put your hand against the walls; if it feels cold and wet, then there will be damp, even if it has just been repainted. Although this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t buy the house, it does mean you should proceed with caution, and that you will need to have work done once you own it. This could be a good negotiating angle, so bear it in mind if you’re looking for a bargain.
It can be easy to overlook the roof of a property since you won’t be able to see most of it much of the time. However, this doesn’t mean it should be ignored. If you can see holes, or there are tiles on the ground that have clearly fallen, there could be a problem. See if you can go into the loft when you are viewing a property as this can also give you plenty of clues.
If you’re not sure, ask an expert to come and check it out for you. The expert will immediately spot any issues and be able to let you know what the cost might be to have the repairs done. When you have the report, you can speak to the realtor about the problems. It might be that the owners were unaware, but they are willing to get the problem fixed, or reduce their price.
The rooms might be a good size and the garden could be lovely, but is there enough storage? This is an important point – the last thing you want to do is move in somewhere and then find there is no space to put your clothing, the food in your kitchen, or bed linen and towels that also need to be stored, no to mention toys and games if you have children.
You will need to take the amount of storage into account when you are viewing a property. It should have at least what you have now, if not more. Otherwise, you will need to be willing to reduce the amount of possessions that you have. Sometimes this can be a wonderful idea, especially if you don’t want the stress of packing everything up.