Charlotte House Hunting: Five Small Signs That Can Indicate Larger Problems
It’s not at all uncommon for homebuyers to recount horror stories about properties that appeared to be fine at first glance, but were actually hiding very expensive problems to which no one was remotely aware. If you fail to do your Due Diligence, you may find your dream house turning into a nightmare. The next time you walk through a house, pay attention for these five signs that the property might be hiding a foul secret or two.
Mold, Water Spots and Water Damage
Both older and newer homes alike may develop a leaky roof, pipe or other plumbing issue from time to time but, any type of water issue can result in mold growth inside the walls. Water spots and warped wood indicate that the property has had a water issue in the past, and this means that the property should be more thoroughly inspected for mold growth before you make a purchase. Also, be aware of fragrance devices that could be being used to cover the musty, mildew odor in a home.
Sticking Doors and Windows
One of the most common signs of a foundation issue is doors and windows that stick or that are difficult to open and close. As you walk through the home, open and close the doors at leisure to confirm if they are in the frame properly. The issue should be reviewed by a structural engineer, home inspector or foundation contractor. Sticking windows could very well simply be a sign of being painted shut – examine that possibility as well.
Some cracks in both interior and exterior walls are considered normal foundation settling. Larger, deeper cracks can indicate that the home’s foundation has shifted; significant issues may be indicated by molding or door frames that appear to have shifted after installation. A structural engineer’s review may be warranted during the Due Diligence period.
Fresh Paint on a Small Area of the Wall or Ceiling
Many Charlotte home sellers will apply fresh paint to walls before listing their home, and this is not necessarily a sign of damage to the home. However, when fresh paint is applied on one area of the wall or ceiling alone, this may be a sign that the homeowner is attempting to conceal water damage or other related issues with the property. Further inspection of the property is in order.
A significant indicator that the foundation has shifted can be detected by floor slanting to a level that you feel as though you are walking up or down across the home. Foundation issues result in the movement of the foundation that the entire home rests on, and this can result in an uneven feeling when you walk across the floor. If you notice that the floors in a property slant, you should schedule an inspection of the foundation as well. It could very well be that your foundation merely needs pier installation (which is not an expensive remedy). However, it is best to determine exactly what is needed to address the foundation issue as well as the cost, before the end of your Due Diligence period.
These small signs can be completely normal or they can be symptoms of larger problems. If you notice any of these problems during your showing, ask your real estate professional for guidance. The potential issues should be addressed/reviewed during your Due Diligence period.
© Debe Maxwell | Savvy + Company Real Estate | SavvyBroker@me.com | Charlotte House Hunting: Five Small Signs That Can Indicate Larger Problems