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What to Look For When Buying an Old House

Old houses have a unique beauty to them that many homeowners prefer over the more utilitarian designs used in modern construction. What’s more, older houses have long histories that give them a certain unique atmosphere that can rarely be found in newer buildings.

How far in advance should you look for a house to buyUnfortunately, old houses also tend to have more problems than their younger counterparts. That’s why having trusted Poway home inspectors thoroughly inspect the old home before you make a buying offer is crucial. After all, you don’t want to spend your savings on a new place, only to discover it needs extensive renovations that you simply can’t afford.

In previous articles, we told you how to prepare yourself for a home inspection and how to make the most out of your home inspection. Now we’ll get into the specifics of old houses and what you should have in mind if you decide to buy one. Keep reading to learn more.

What’s considered an old house?

It’s generally accepted that homes built before the 1920s are seen as “old” or “antique”, while homes constructed during the 1990s and after are considered newer. However, what exactly constitutes an old house depends on a number of subjective and objective factors.

These factors include:

  • Geology and climate. Increased humidity, seismic activity, temperature extremes, limestone geology, high water tables, and sinkholes are just some of the numerous environmental conditions that can speed up a building’s aging process. Your home inspector will take these factors into account during their examination, so listen to them carefully and don’t hesitate to ask questions during the inspection.
  • Construction quality and style. Older homes (such as Colonials, Tudors, and Craftsmans) tend to use sturdier materials than mobile, prefabricated, or mass-produced newer homes. That being said, custom-built modern homes are often considerably more solid and reliable than older ones. Take your time and look at all available options.
  • Renovations can greatly complicate things when it comes to determining how old a house is. Let’s say a place has been originally built in the 1800s, but it has since been dramatically updated every ten years and most of the components in it are from the 1980s or later. Does this house really count as an old house anymore? The best you can do is subject the home to multiple examinations and decide for yourself.

How far in advance should you look for a house to buy?

Whats considered an old houseShort answer: as soon as possible. Long answer: moving to a new home is a challenging process at the best of times, so you want to do everything you can to ensure the transition is as smooth as it can be. Make the most of the time you have before your current lease runs out.

Let’s say you want to move in 6 months. This is how you can use this time:

  • Month #1: Gather the documents needed for a mortgage application and find out who are the most reliable home inspectors, mortgage officers, and realtors in your area. Search online for a home you like.
  • Month #2: Meet with your chosen experts and start the organized searching phase. Begin looking at homes as soon as your mortgage process is underway.
  • Month #3: At this point, you should be ready to start making offers.
  • Month #4: If you still haven’t found your dream home, don’t worry. Keep looking, and consider adjusting your expectations and preferred geographical area.
  • Month #5: You should be preparing to close and sign the final contracts.
  • Month #6: You’ll be packing and making arrangements for your big moving day.

Where do I hire peerless Poway home inspectors?

Have you found a wonderful property near the Poway Swim Center that you are tempted to purchase? Inspectors Company can supply you with the critical information you need to make a rational decision and a sound investment instead of going with your gut instinct. Get in touch with us and enlist the services of a reputable home inspector who will help you weigh the pros and cons of buying this house you have your heart set on. Call today!

Questions to Ask When Buying a New Home: When You’re Making an Offer

So you found a house you like and you hired a top-notch home inspector to make sure the house is sound before you buy it. Your home inspector in Poway, San Diego has completed their inspection and found no serious problems such as structural instabilities or a mold infestation.

what to ask the seller after home inspectionThe only thing that’s left to do now is to close the deal. Most sellers either don’t put a price tag on their property, or they deliberately list a price that’s too high because that gives them more leverage during negotiations. Either way, you have to make an offer.

In this article, we’ll help you make a smart buying decision by giving you a few crucial home inspection questions and techniques that you can use to your advantage. Read on to learn more.

Did the seller already receive other offers?

Knowing whether other people have already made offers for the house you’re thinking of buying is extremely important. If there’s competition involved, you need to act fast and make a strong offer right off the bat.

On the other hand, if nobody else has made an offer yet, you can take it easy and thoroughly asses the home in question. Sellers know that any buyer can decide to walk away at any time, and the lack of offers can cause them to become worried and therefore more willing to accept a lower offer.

What about disclosures?

Does the property have any plumbing or electrical issues? Is it in danger of getting flooded? Are there any liens on it? These are just some of the many serious problems that a seller is legally obliged to tell you about before they can sell you the property.

That being said, there are many irresponsible or unscrupulous sellers out there who may deliberately omit to give you this information in order to get you to make a rushed buying decision. It’s best to get a full list of disclosures before you make any offers.

Does the seller still owe on the home? If so, how much?

The properties that have already been paid for in full will naturally require a higher offer, whereas properties that still have considerable mortgage payments left can be bought at a lower price. Once you have this information, discuss it with your realtor and prepare an offer strategy. Never make a spur-of-the-moment offer.

How high are the property taxes?

did the seller already receive other offersProperty taxes vary a lot depending on what US state or county you’re in. Because of this, you should take the time to educate yourself about the taxes that apply to the place you want to buy. Don’t forget to ask the seller. An honest seller will happily give you copies of their bills, whereas a seller who tries to withhold information is a huge red flag.

How soon does the seller want to close?

Ask yourself: if the seller wishes to close within 1-2 weeks, will I be prepared? What if they plan to keep the sale open for at least two months? While it’s possible to negotiate with the seller and have the closing timeline shortened or postponed, it’s still something you must keep in mind when preparing your offer.

Where can I hire a reliable home inspector in Poway, San Diego?

Let’s say there’s a great property near the Tony Gwynn Memorial in Poway, San Diego that you’re thinking of purchasing. Before you can even consider making an offer, you must ensure this place doesn’t have any serious problems that may be prohibitively expensive or even impossible to solve.

The best way to do this is to enlist the services of a dependable home inspection technician. The experts who work at Inspectors Company have both the experience and the equipment necessary to conduct second-to-none home examinations and compile extensive inspection reports. Reach out to us today.