Two Warning Signs The Home You'Re Touring May Have Issues

An open house is an excellent way to see a home up close to determine if it fits your needs and preferences. While measuring the rooms and judging the age of the appliances, it's important to also keep your eye out for subtle signs the home may have serious issues that will require a lot of money to repair. Here are two red flags you should investigate further.

Signs of Neglect

Homes are great, but they require a lot of work to maintain, and not every homeowner is up to the task. Unfortunately, a poorly maintained home can mean expensive repairs for any new owner that decides to buy it. While you should automatically pass up a home that needs some TLC right out of the gate, it's important that you know what you're getting into before you make a purchase so you're fully prepared.

Although the homeowner may have made some cosmetic improvements, a home that hasn't been maintained well will often leave telltale signs, such as:

  • Uneven floor tiles, which may indicate a rush repair job
  • Leaky faucets
  • Non-working lights or electrical outlets
  • Little to no caulking around windows and doors
  • Faded paint
  • Cracks and stains on walls, floors, and stairs
  • Dirty chimney
  • Dirty air filters

These may seem like minor things, but it may mean the homeowner hasn't taken good care of the home when added up together. And if the homeowner hasn't kept the small things in good repair, it's safe to assume the larger things (e.g., water heaters) are probably not faring well either. Be sure to have the home thoroughly inspected by a professional, and ask for concessions on any major issues that are uncovered.

Aggressive Scent Management

Another red flag that things may not be what they seem in a home is aggressive scent management. It's a well-known fact that lovely scents like cookies and vanilla can make a home seem more attractive to homebuyers, so it's not unusual for sellers to use this trick. However, if the seller appears to be overly aggressive about the use of scents in the house (e.g., use of candles, scent plug-ins, and room sprays), it could be a sign that he or she is trying to cover up objectionable and/or worrying odors, such as mold or pet damage.

Take a closer look at the walls, floors, and ceilings for things that may indicate issues. For instance, black and grey spots on ceilings may indicate a mold issue. Water damage on walls may mean there was a flood of some type which, in turn, may mean you'll be dealing with water damage. Again, a good inspector can help you uncover these issues so you don't end up paying more for the home than necessary.

For more information about these issues or help selecting the best home for you, contact a realtor at a real estate agency like Jeff Glover & Associates Realtors.