Whether it's a brand new, custom-built luxury home or more of a fixer-upper, purchasing a home is a huge decision that should not be made until you've had a chance to thoroughly inspect all interior and exterior aspects of the property. While it's always recommended you hire a licensed professional to perform the inspection of your potential new home, you should also have a basic understanding of what to look out for during the inspection to ensure you're getting your money's worth and that nothing is being overlooked. Things to Look for and Questions to Ask During Your Home Inspection
- Roof -- Is the roof in good overall condition? When was it last repaired or replaced? What type of roof is it (metal, asphalt, concrete, etc.)?
- Exterior -- How does the paint look -- does it appear fresh or will it need repainting sometime in the near future? Do you notice anything that might need to be repaired? Is the gutter system securely attached to the roof? How about the downspouts? Are there any signs of pest infestations on the outside or inside?
- Attic -- Is the attic well insulated? How does the roof's structure look from the inside? Do you see any signs of leaks through the roof or walls?
- Signs of Leaks -- Take a close look for signs of leaks around windows and ceilings in each room. In addition to signs of moisture leakage, do you feel any drafts of air coming through the windows?
- Basement -- Is the basement well insulated? Do you see any signs of dampness or smell any musty odors? Has the basement been professionally waterproofed?
- Electrical -- Check every light switch in the house -- do they all work? Are the outlets grounded? Is the electrical panel/switchboard in good, up-to-date condition? Does it appear to be expandable in case you decide to add any additional appliances or remodel the home at some point in the future?
- Plumbing -- Don't be afraid to turn on every faucet and flush every toilet in the home. Do you hear any unusual or concerning noises? Is everything in good working order? Has the sewer line been inspected for signs of cracks? Are any of the plumbing fixtures energy-efficient or low-flow models?
- Appliances -- Are the appliances included in the list price? If so, how old are they? Are they in good condition? Are any of them ENERGY STAR rated?
- Heating and Cooling System -- Inquire about the age, type, and brand of the heating and cooling system. Try turning on both the heat and air conditioning -- how do they work? When was the last time the HVAC system and air ducts were cleaned and/or inspected?
- Odor -- Are there any noticeable odors -- good or bad -- in any area of the home? If you notice any musty odors, ask if the home has been inspected and treated for mold and mildew.
- Lot -- Is the driveway sloped? Does the lot layout appear to direct water away from the home, or toward it? Are there any visible damp/soggy areas around the outside of the home?
- Foundation -- Take a close look at the base of the ceilings and walls in every room -- are there noticeable cracks, shifts or signs of warping in the foundation? After examining all rooms inside the home, do the same around the entire exterior as well. Are any tree roots encroaching/growing into the foundation?
What to Do if You See Signs of Failing Foundation If your current or potential future home's foundation is cracked, bowed, warped or failing in any other way, don't hesitate -- call the friendly, experienced foundation repair experts at Everdry Waterproofing of Upstate New York right away. We've been dedicated to repairing and strengthening the foundation of Rochester, Buffalo and Syracuse area homes since 1978, and we'd be honored to put our expertise to work for you. Contact us online to schedule your free home inspection.