6 Things to Inspect Before Purchasing a Home

You’ve found the perfect home and decide to put in an offer. What could go wrong? If you don’t examine the home closely before purchasing it, you could end up inheriting dangerous problems. If you are considering buying a home in Toronto, Ontario, here are a few things you should inspect before signing the papers.

·         The basement. Start your inspection in the basement. Pay close attention to any musty smells or odors. These are usually signs of water damage. Also, keep an eye out for drips or water stains. If you see any rotting wood, leaks, or cracks in the foundation, it could be a sign of leaky pipes or structural issues. These are difficult and costly issues to fix. While it can be done, it could affect the selling price of the home or cause you to change your mind all together.

·         The attic. Like the basement, it’s extremely important to inspect the attic of a prospective home. Because the attic is close to the roof, it’s easy to tell whether or not there are repairs that need to be made. Once you are in the attic, look for leakage. If it hasn’t rained recently, you may not see actual water dripping through the beams. Instead, look for rotting wood, water damage, or damp smelling material. While you’re up there, take a look at the insulation. It should be thick enough to keep your home at your desired temperature.

·         Plumbing. The pipes in a home are extremely important. If you are looking to purchase an older home especially, take a look at the plumbing. Old pipes could be growing mold or mildew. Plus, if the home isn’t plumbed correctly, severe water damage or flooding is imminent.

·         HVAC system. Can you imagine spending a fortune on a home only to discover that the air conditioner doesn’t work? Protect your finances by inspecting the furnace and HVAC system before putting in an offer. The size of your unit should be large enough to efficiently heat and cool the entire space of your home.

·         The home’s exterior. The chimney, roof, and exterior walls of your home can tell you a lot about its structural integrity. If you find clogged gutters or cracked stucco and brick, there could be foundation issues due to water damage. Check driveways and walkways for cracks as these are signs of the ground settling. If checking the chimney, make sure the flashing is secure. Otherwise, critters, water, and debris can cause problems with the structure of your home and your fireplace.

·         Windows. Before purchasing a home, take the time to open each of the windows. Make sure that they glide easily, close properly, and lock. If they don’t, it’s a safety hazard for your family. Inefficient windows also make it difficult to heat and cool your home properly. Plus, windows are an expensive item to replace. By uncovering the problem early on, you aren’t surprised by the replacement cost years into homeownership.

Don’t purchase a money pit. Whether you are in the beginning stages of looking at residential properties in Toronto, Ontario, or you already have a home in mind, take the time to inspect it. By examining these 6 things, you avoid costly repairs in the future.