Buying an Old House? Check for these Common Faults to Avoid Unexpected Costs

by - February 28, 2018

Old homes are full of charm, but they can also be full of unexpected surprises. Unless you are a structural engineer or a builder, you might not be able to see the signs of deterioration, and your home survey will not necessarily highlight some of the most important issues. To avoid paying a high price for repairs right after you buy the house, you should look out for these common faults that can cost you a lot of money to fix.

  1. Dampness

When you first  visit the home, you might find everything in order, especially if you inspect it fully furnished. The owner might mask unpleasant smells, and place furniture in front of the damp spots and the mold infestation. In some cases, you will find that there is a condensation behind wall or floor tiles that you cannot see. If you are in doubt, you should make sure you take a professional with you, or upgrade your home survey service to be sure.
  1. Cracks

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If you notice cracks on the wall, you might want to walk away right now. However, if the price is right, you can ask an expert and visit the home with Foundation Repair contractors who can give you a quick assessment, and an estimated cost of repair. If the crack is caused by a foundation problem or a sinkhole, the repair might cost you more than the house, However, if it is small and superficial, you have a good chance of getting yourself a deal.
  1. Noisy Plumbing

Before you would put in an offer for an old house, you should get the plumbing tested. As a minimum, you have to ask the realtor to turn the heating and the taps on. Changing the entire heating system and the pipework can cost you a lot of money. While you might want to install a new furnace anyway, after you move in, if you have old pipes that are noisy, this will cost you much more.
  1. Old Fuse Box

Another thing that can go wrong with old houses is the electricity. They were originally designed for much lower consumption than today’s lifestyle uses. This means that the fuse box might not be able to cope with all your appliances; washing machines, dryers, ovens, and electric heaters. Talk to an electrical engineer or upgrade your home safety assessment report, so you know beforehand whether or not you need to rewire the entire house, which will increase your overall cost.
  1. Old Chimneys

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Old chimneys are not only unnecessary today, but they can also have structural damage, and pests living in them. Birds and bats in chimneys can cause damage and pose a health risk for you and your family. It is important that you get the chimney inspected, and get a CCTV survey completed.  

While you might fall in love with an old house that is full of character and has plenty of potential, you will have to be careful and get all the above issues checked to avoid unpleasant surprises.

As always don't forget to share and subscribe! Until next time thanks for reading!

R.C. Willey

R.C. Willey

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