Buyer Checklist for Property ShowingsPosted on Aug 10, 2020
You’ve made it to the most exciting part of your home-buying journey: house-hunting! We know you’re excited, as well you should be, but let’s go into this part with a level head. Did you know that buyers typically only spend 8 to 15 minutes on average viewing a property? That’s a pretty quick overview for such a major purchase. Take this checklist along with you on your property viewings. If you find a home that you’re seriously interested in, a careful look in the beginning could save you wasted fees and repairs later on.
Check for signs of wetness on the ceiling, in the corners, under window sills, and doors.
Peeling wallpaper or brownish stains on walls and/or ceilings are dead giveaways of a leak.
Notice any musty smells in basements or inside cupboards.
Look for condensation on windows.
Look closely at window frames, sills, and door steps for signs of rot
Ask to see the attic so you can see the rafters and timbers. If it’s daylight, look for light peeking through or cracks in the roof.
Inside, look for cracks in the walls and ceilings. Hairline cracks are common, but if they’re big enough to insert a coin, there could be a serious problem.
Examine the roof (as much as possible.) Can you see any missing or slipped shingles? Do the gutters look clean and stable? Are the drains clear? Make sure the flashings (the trim on the roof) and the fascias (the wooden section under the roof) appear secure and in good repair.
Do any of the outside walls seem bowed?
Examine chimneys (and whether they have hoods on them.) Also asked when they were last cleaned/inspected.
Does the wiring outside seem secure?
Look for any signs or settling or heaving, especially if there are large trees nearby.
What’s the parking situation? If there’s none available on-site, how difficult is it to find parking nearby?
How close are amenities like public transport, schools, parks, or other facilities?
Try to imagine you and your belongings in the space. Will everything fit?
Be aware that show homes are often staged with furniture that is smaller than normal to maximize the feeling of space.
Check the square footage and divide this into the price to see how it compares to similar sized properties in the area. Your agent will definitely be doing this as well!
Is the listed square footage including the basement, garage, or outbuildings?
What’s security like? Make sure doors and windows lock properly. Your insurance will definitely want to be sure of this.
Turn on taps, flick switches, and flush toilets to see how they work (or have your agent do this for you to minimize potential contamination).
Open/close doors and windows to see if they stick. Likewise with drawers and cabinets, especially in the kitchen.
Assess the level of built-in storage and whether there’s room for more to be added later.
Are there an adequate number of electrical outlets, phone, and cable hookups?
Do you have cell reception inside the house?
Is there exposed wiring visible?
Ask how and when the furnace, A/C unit, and hot water heater were last serviced and how old they are.
This is by no means an all-encompassing list, but we hope it helps to give you a brief overview of what we look for on behalf of our clients here at Team Lassen. If you have more questions about the real questions you want to be asking during a property showing, we’re always happy to chat!