Deal with it or deal breaker?
When house hunting it can be hard to decide what you are willing to live with and what will end up causing you more stress. We have come up with a list of major home fixes to help you decide which problems are worth your time and money – because we can’t all be home inspectors.
• Asbestos – Bad, bad, bad stuff! It is a carcinogen and poses a serious health risk. Asbestos is typically found in older homes with disintegrating insulation in the attic and around plumbing.
• Bad plumbing or wiring – An amateur plumbing or wiring job can lead to bigger and more expensive risks. It can cost you big time if all of your walls need to be replaced, etc. Look for exposed wires or any leaking.
• Water damage or mold – Again, a seriously expensive project to tackle. Check low on the basement walls as well as in high corners as both spots can have separate water damage.
• Crummy neighborhood – No one wants to put up with troublesome neighbors or bad schools, but it will also be harder to re-sell.
• Cracked or shaky foundation – It can cost tens of thousands of dollars to repair serious structural damage. Who wants to buy into that mess? Look for gaps in windows and doors, make sure the chimney isn’t crooked and that the floors inside are level.
• Pests – Look for any evidence of wood-destroying insects – they also cause structural damage. You don’t want to get involved with pest control when you are buying a new home.
Deal with it:
• Hot water tank issues – Reasonably inexpensive to replace and can last up to a decade.
• Old roof – Remember, an old roof is different from a leaky roof. It’s up to you to decide if your house is worth new shingles, but if you do replace your roof it should be good for another 20 years.
• Ugly carpeting or wallpaper – There are so many possibilities here! Carpeting and wallpaper are fairly easy to rip out and then you have the option to choose what to do next.
• No central A/C – Bummer! But not the end of the world. Most of us can make do with a wall unit until you can afford to install air conditioning.
• Outdated light fixtures – This is an easy fix and you can choose lighting to match your personal taste. As long as the wiring is up to code, don’t let tacky fixtures stand in your way of a new home!
Feel like sharing your experiences with us? We’d love to hear your new home stories in the comment section.