When you're interested in buying a home and have arranged a viewing with your real estate agent, it's important to keep a watchful eye for any potential issues. While you'll often be tempted to picture yourself and your furniture in the home, you should never lose sight of trying to identify things that could compel you to disregard the house and continue your search. While overt problems will often stand out, you should also look for smaller signs. In many cases, small, seemingly innocent issues can be indicative of larger problems because if the current homeowner hasn't made an effort to fix small things, you can't trust that he or she has taken care of larger issues. Here are some things to keep an eye out for.
Lack Of Yard Maintenance
While it's true that not everyone has a green thumb, it's a concern if the house's yard is in poor shape. You should always expect that a seller has taken the time to mow the lawn, trim overgrown trees, and perform other visually pleasing tasks — especially once the house has gone on the market. If the yard doesn't reveal signs that the owner has much pride of ownership, it could be a sign that there are hidden problems around the house.
Visible Dirt Throughout The Home
Conscientious sellers will often make the investment to have their home professionally cleaned before it goes on the market, and the average seller should at least vacuum and perform other basic cleaning tasks before your scheduled viewing. If you're seeing overt signs that the house is dirty, such as dirt and hair on the floor, a thick layer of dust on furniture, and splattered food in the kitchen, it could be a warning sign that there are larger, unseen problems in the house.
Simple Signs Of Disrepair
When you see simple signs of disrepair, they often show that the homeowner hasn't done much upkeep throughout the home. Issues such as worn-out carpet and dented walls can easily and inexpensively be fixed before listing the home for sale, which means that it's a concern if these things are present during your scheduled viewing. If many such issues are obvious, you can likely count on a home inspection turning up things that are more serious. In this scenario, it's best to tell your real estate agent that you'd like to continue your house search, rather than think about pursuing this specific house.