6 Red Flags to Watch for When Buying a Home – If you’re house hunting, you probably have a list of things to look for when you’re touring a potential new home, but searching for those items may leave you blind to the things you SHOULD notice but don’t pay attention to. Sellers should disclose any issues or problems with the home, but sometimes they may try to smooth over them and hope buyers don’t notice. While you know to get a pro to inspect a home before you actually make the purchase, you can save time and money by keeping an eye out for certain red flags when you visit a listed home.
Below are six of the red flags to look for when buying a home:
1. Poor maintenance. Is the paint fresh, or is it faded or peeling? Are the gutters cleaned and the yard maintained? If the owners don’t keep up the basic things, what else have they neglected?
2. Too many “For Sale” signs. Is there a sale sign in multiple yards in the neighborhood? If so, something’s up that is making these homeowners want to leave. Investigate and do your research on the area before becoming more involved.
3. Fishy (or plain bad) smells. We don’t literally mean fishy, but if something doesn’t smell right, that’s a big red flag. Smells like smoke or pet odor can be hard to remove, and some smells can mean a mold or mildew problem. Another tell is if there are lots of candles or bowls of potpourri.
4. “Off limits” areas. Is a room blocked off or locked during the house tour? This could be a private area, or there could be an issue behind the closed doors. If you’re still interested in the house, ask the homeowner to show you those areas at a later time.
5. Unfriendly animals. Do you see mouse or ant traps, or smell insecticide? These could point to an insect or rodent problem. Keep a good eye out for any sign of infestation.
6. Signs of moisture. Do the walls look like they’re sagging? Is there any sign of moisture in the windows or basement? These could point to serious foundation or mold problems.
By keeping an eye out for these problems, you can save yourself from spending time and money on a house that may prove unfit for you. Have you experienced any of these red flags? Do you have any other red flags to add? Comment to share with us!