I am looking at a house tomorrow to... PURCHASE. Never thought I would write that sentence! Apparently there are things you should look for when you're looking at the house beyond 'it's pretty' and 'would all my stuff fit!' So all you home buyers, can you please help me make a checklist of things to check or ask about?
What I have so far:
- insects/snakes probability
- white ants
- is it pretty?
- is there room for everything?
I am way out of my depth here and it's all been kind of impulsive... Also, what's the deal with making an offer? Can I not just offer the asking price? It's in the country so it's a steal anyway...
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01-10-2015 16:41 #1
Eep...advice needed please!
01-10-2015 16:49 #2
Eep...advice needed please!
Added to your list of things to look at - has it been well maintained (roof, outdoors etc)?
- garden - is it irrigated - does the system work?
- Are there any obvious major work that needs doing that will cost $$ immediately? (Take this into account when making offers).
- what work/$$ will need to be spent over the next few years
- Hot water systems - how old? Well maintained?
- does the house have a good vibe (a bit hippy but I know I've had good and bad vibes when I've looked at places).
Best of luck - such a stressful/exciting time!
ETA: you can offer less than the asking price if you like...offer what you think the property is worth (and obviously what you can afford).
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01-10-2015 16:52 #3
Look around at what others have sold for. Then you will know if it's good value or not.
Will your fridge fit in the gap?
Can you manage the garden?
How much maintenance does it need?
Much work needed to be done soon?
Lay out of bed rooms?
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01-10-2015 17:04 #4
Woohooo! Good luck Harvs!
Make sure you get a building inspection report. That will pick up anything major with the structure etc.
01-10-2015 17:14 #5Senior Member
- Join Date
- Mar 2015
I'd offer less than the asking price because you can always come up. I know when I've sold property, I've always listed it at an optimistic price but willing to accept up to $20k less. The worst they'll do is say no and then you can make another offer good luck!!!
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01-10-2015 17:28 #6
Look for cracks, big and small, note the direction or pattern of cracks. (Possible structural issues depending on the size or pattern of cracks, some fine ones are normal though)
Check for peeling or bubbling paint, mold spots anywhere.(looking for water damage)
Check gutters for obvious rust/holes/over flowing etc (could be a source of water damage in the roof in future)
Look for large trees close to the house. Lots of large trees near the house. Their roots can cause big issues with plumbing. (The main reason we turned a house down because it caused cracks in the foundation of the house and cause the house to have many cracks in walls etc)
Check structure of any cupboards/pantry/closets. Check for water damage/worn/damaged drawers, shelves, structure. Can be an unexpected expense in the near future.
Feel for lifting, loose, tiles and/or check for missing grout. Not a biggie unless it is in the bathroom, even then an easy fix if not left too long.(not necessarily a deal breaker but nit picking and depending on how much work is needed it could be an unwanted expense)
Air conditioning/solar water/power.. Ask if it works. We have a disused solar water heater on our roof when we bought it. Other houses we have looked at we tested and told the agent the air conditioners weren't working.
Check the condition of fences. Again can be costly.
Check the condition of the outside roof. Old looking tiles or tin may look OK but can leak worse than a sieve! Or neighbours roof looks better than ours but leaked so bad his ceiling collapsed from water damage.
Avoid houses with texture paint inside. They are a pitch to paint/remove.
If you love it and it all seems good, ask around the street what the neighbours are like. Ask the next door neighbours if they know the owners and if they know of any issues you don't know about. If your brave!
01-10-2015 17:32 #7
And you can offer below the asking price if you want. The worst they will say is no, then you can come back with asking price or higher if you wanted to.
01-10-2015 17:35 #8
How exciting! These are the things I would look for:
- storage. You don't want to move in and find you've got nowhere to put anything.
- does it need work? And if so, is it work that you're prepared to take on in the future.
- garden and maintenance. My thumb is mostly brown so I would so not want a high maintenance garden.
- does it meet your needs? It's really easy to overlook some aspects when it looks pretty etc.
- heating/cooling. Does it have fans/reverse cycle air conditioning? Don't want to swelter in summer or freeze in winter. If it doesn't have what you want, factor in the cost of adding these things into your budget.
- location. Better to buy the worst home in a good neighborhood than the best home in the worst neighborhood. Even in the country I know there are some places that you wouldn't live unless you had to!
- utilities. Are you on town water/tank water, electric hot water, mains gas/tanks etc. Not so much because it will change your mind, but so you can think about any extra costs/inconveniences.
If you are going to make an offer, you can do so below the asking price. Also make your contract conditional on a few things.
- building inspection
- pest inspection
If either of these fail, you can pull out of the contract penalty free (we've done this before).
If the house needs attention to certain things you can negotiate the price based on those things. i.e. If the place is grotty/they have indoor pets etc you can ask them to have the house/carpets professionally cleaned before you move in and factor this into your price. If there's something not functioning as it should you can ask them to fix it and reflect this in your offer, or offer less and fix it yourself. I would imagine most people wanting to sell their house would have paid attention to these things, but if it was a deceased estate for example, the family might not have done much of a revamp.
01-10-2015 17:42 #9
Oh wow. I'd buy it from the photos lol. Who are you wanting to inspect it? They will if it's a building or pest inspector, not sure if it's just a friend or relative.
01-10-2015 17:45 #10
Also, don't forgot to look up! It's easy to miss water stains, cracks on ceilings etc. We're very good at not looking at anything above eye level!
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