Once a house has spent a couple or so years under the elements then it has the potential to have problems within – both minor and major. Buying a house without knowing of such problems can seriously demoralize you, and then some.
Professional inspectors are available, but if you could do most of it yourself, you could save yourself some money and time as well. Here are some of the simpler steps in the home inspection process that you can do yourself!
Walls, Inch By Inch
Upon crossing the portal, look to the right and check the wall. As you move through the various rooms and hallways, keep checking the walls to your right. Signs to look out for are cracks, stretched or compressed wallpaper, plaster abnormalities, and separated joints. These can point to the house shifting in its foundations.
Eyes And Ears Out For Leaks
Use your eyes to check for water stains on the ceiling or walls. If the walls are papered, then check for wrinkles and bubbles as these can also point to leaks. A bright flashlight might be needed to properly discern these problems, especially if they have been covered up. Keep your ears open and listen for drips. Check out all the sinks and water outlets – the toilets, the shower, and more. Water pressure is also an important consideration. Mildew, missing grout, or cracked or loose tiles may be markers of in-wall leaks.
Inspecting The Power
You should turn every switch on and off, checking the lights and other such things. If there are appliances provided, make sure to check them out as well. Outlets should be sufficient in number and well positioned. Check out all the outlets – it helps if you can bring a plug-in night light for this.
Condition Is The Name Of The Game
Doors and windows should be inspected for squeaks and ease of opening and closing. Listen for creaking floors or stairs. Good places to look for signs of the house shifting are the front stoop, chimney, and the point where the driveway joins up with the house. If the house has a garage, make sure to check all sides for problems and if the garage door is in good condition.
Pest Patrol For Control
No one likes having pests inside their home. Ants, termites, cockroaches, and mice are what you will want to watch out for. Sometimes, the insects can make their way in via holes made to accommodate electrical or water lines. Termites can seriously reduce a building’s structural integrity, so make sure the house is termite-free.
Of course, you might want to do everything yourself, however, I always recommend some professional know-how. Ask a pro home inspector to get into the generally inaccessible spaces like the crawl spaces and roof and check it out for you. Have him or her check for problems with the gas, electricity, water, heating, and air conditioning. Ask for a detailed written report, so you can consult with a contractor.