3 Questions to Ask Before Buying an Old House

April 8th, 2014

buying an old houseAre you considering buying an old house? Old villas and bungalows can be charming, but with age, often comes problems.

While we’re drawn to older homes which are often oozing with character, they can quickly become money pits and the source of endless frustration for homeowners. So, if you are unsure if an older home is right for you, here’s three questions to ask before you sign on the dotted line.

Buying an old house? Ask these questions first!

You don’t want to buy a lemon! Here are 3 questions you need to ask before buying an old house.

Are the foundations solid?

buying an old houseIt’s common for older homes to have foundation issues, which can be expensive to fix. When you’re looking at an older home, leave the bedrooms and living rooms to last. The most important information is under the house. Check the foundations for cracks and signs of shifting.

Also look for and test for mold from top to bottom when you’re buying an old house.

It can be an early warning sign of weak foundations and other problems.

You must have these covered off in detail in any report provided by a home inspection service. If you see signs of cracked or crumbling foundations, it’s best to move on unless you’ve got the money to invest in redoing the foundations completely.

What age is the electrical wiring?

buying an old houseMany old homes have their original wiring which can pose a potential fire hazard – especially near or in the roof where it’s likely to be covered by insulation. If the houses wiring is outdated, make sure you get a detailed quote for the cost of fully replacing it. It’s an expensive job that can only be carried out by a registered electrician.

How modern is the plumbing?

buying an old houseIf the house has old pipes, they may need replacing due to mineral build up, leaks or corrosion. Make sure you closely inspect any exposed pipes to see if they’re properly working.

Mineral buildup won’t be that noticeable until you’re trying to have a shower and wondering why not much water is coming out.

Finally, always hire a reputable Property Inspector to provide a building report. While a Builder can perform the same service, ensure that what you are paying for is a Building Report and not any other kind of basic report or feedback on your home and that it covers the aspects of a home detailed above.

A building report can be used as a condition in your sale and purchase agreement. If significant defects are present in the building report, it may be used as a legitimate reason to cancel the agreement.

It’s important to always hire your own expert advisors. NEVER rely on a report provided by a vendor or real estate agent.

Posted In: Electricians, Foundation Specialists, Inspectors, Inspectors & Valuers, Plumbers, Tauranga, Waimakariri, Waitomo, Westland, Whangarei

%d bloggers like this: