When it comes to buying a home, you want to make sure you buy the right one. Your home will be one of the biggest investments you make in your lifetime, which means you want to avoid as many costly mistakes as possible. That's where a thorough home inspection comes in handy. While you're touring homes, take the time to check a few items off your inspection list. Here are three areas of the home you should inspect before you agree to a purchase.
Check the Foundation
The last thing you want to do is purchase a home with a faulty foundation. After all, the foundation is responsible for the structural integrity of the entire home. Unfortunately, most of the foundation will be hidden under flooring. However, you can still get a clear picture of the foundation by following a few steps.
Follow Your Feet
When checking on the health of a foundation, the first thing you should do is follow your feet. Slowly walk through the house, feeling for ridges or spaces under the flooring. Those ridges and spaces could be a sign of foundation damage.
Open the Doors
The next thing you want to do is open the doors. Each door in the house should open and close smoothly. They should also stay latched. If you need to tug on the doors to open them, or they don't stay latched, they're not sitting in the frame properly, which could signify a problem with the foundation.
Look at the Doorways
Finally, look at the doorways, especially the corners of each doorjamb. If you see cracks in the walls, you're looking at a home with foundation damage – especially if you noticed the other problems listed above.
Test the Plumbing
The plumbing is the next area of the home you want to test. First, flush each of the toilets. Watch to see how the water flows from the bowl. Also listen for gurgling sounds from deep inside the pipes. Problems with water flow, or gurgling sounds could indicate problems with sewer or septic lines. Next, turn several of the faucets on at the same time. If the water pressure changes, there might be problems with the main water lines.
Smell the Cabinets
The final thing you want to do is smell the cabinets, especially those in the kitchen and bathrooms. You're going to be smelling for the faint – or not so faint – odor of mold. A good cleaning may remove any signs of mold, but it won't cover up the odor, especially under the sinks. If you smell mold under the cabinets, there may be a problem with leaking pipes.
Don't take chances with your housing dollars. Before you purchase a home, take the steps described above to identify potential problems. You should also talk to your realtor about a professional home inspection. For more information, contact a business such as Prestige Realty Group LLC.