6 Considerations When Buying an Older Home
Older homes offer charm, character and unique architectural details that can tempt potential home-buyers to fall in love. This love, however can quickly turn into regret and remorse if buyers aren’t careful. While all homes will eventually require some repair and maintenance, older homes are even more at risk. To save yourself some serious headaches, here’s five things to look for before you sign that contract.
Get Two Inspections
One of the biggest complaints older-home owners share after purchasing is the wish they had spent more time on inspection. A home is usually the largest purchase most of us will make in a lifetime, so spending extra $ on a second opinion can help you limit potential problems down the road. Consider the expense a great investment.
Check Plumbing & Sewer Lines
Checking the interior plumbing in your older home is important, but maybe even more important is the sewer line. Hiring a plumbing expert to have a video camera run through the line will alert you to any future potential costly AND messy projects.
Check for Lead Paint
Older homes with few upgrades are likely to have lead paint issues. Understanding the amount of time, cash and work to remedy this problem is paramount prior to making an offer on a home. If you notice flaking or chipping paint, have your inspector test it and get a sense for how long AND how much the project will cost.
Inspect for Bugs/Bats/Infestations
Creepy-crawlies are awful, but bats can be a nightmare. Make certain your inspector checks all nooks and crannies in the attic and roof or you could be left with a disastrous and expensive issue.
Test for Mold
If you’re buying an older home there’s a fair chance you could encounter mold, especially if you the home has a basement and is located in an area that’s prone to flooding. Have your home inspector carefully check the walls for signs of mold. It’s best to know the extent of the issue so that the current owners can fix prior to purchase or the cost doesn’t come as a surprise later.
Estimate Upgrade Costs
Almost all older homes need upgrades. Whether you’re aiming to save on energy bills by purchasing new storm windows or planning to remodel the kitchen, estimating how much you want to spend on these improvements can be an absolute lifesaver. An interest-only Home Equity Line of Credit or Choice Home Equity Loan from the Credit Union is a great way for home-owners to financially plan for a remodel without breaking the bank.
We would love to hear your older home buying stories gone wrong…or right! Leave them for us in the comments!