You’re about to embark on your first major investment, but what do you know about buying a home? The perfect house is more than just the right number of bedrooms and original hardwood floors, because even a beautiful interior can mask major problems that can cost you big bucks down the road. While every home you view has potential, don’t get distracted by great staging – there are a few things you should take seriously before submitting an offer, and we’ve taken the liberty of listing our top 5 below:
A Good Roof
Before you even step foot in the house, cast your glance up and have a good look at the roof. From where you’re standing, are their any obvious signs of wear and tear? Is it caving in or does it look brand new? Generally, your roof should be replaced every ten to fifteen years, how soon will this one need to be redone? Additionally, keep an eye out for water damage on interior walls and ceilings. Staining and buckling may indicate an unattended leak, which can cause material rot or toxic mould growth.
An Up-To-Date Heating System
In Canada, temperatures can fluctuate wildly, and there’s nothing worse than having to suffer a blisteringly cold winter or sweltering summer without the aid of a well-maintained HVAC system. Having to replace an old heating or cooling system can end up costing you thousands of dollars, and should significantly impact the price you’re willing to bid. That is unless the seller is willing to replace it themselves, or split the difference.
Appealing Curb Appeal
Though not necessarily as important, the style of home and exterior design should be high on your list when it comes to purchasing a home. Are you into classic architecture, or do you prefer more modern design?
What is the state of the landscaping, and how much work does it need to get it up to speed.
Ample Closets And Storage
Whether you’re a family of four or a singleton, having ample storage is always important. Older homes tend to feature smaller closets that don’t offer much space. Even if you don’t have a lot of extraneous “stuff”, a everything needs a place. Having an idea of what the closet situation is will give you the opportunity to plan accordingly and either upgrade existing storage accordingly, or bring in other attractive solutions.
Does It Have Resale Value
You probably aren’t thinking about this when you’re caught in the throes of purchasing your first home, and we wouldn’t blame you. But buying a home is still an investment and though you may consider it forever, many people end up moving on down the road. While this house may be desirable now, will it still be so five, ten, even fifteen years down the future? Having a great real estate agent on hand can help with this, since they know the neighbourhood and will be able to make informed predictions about the future state of the market.