Buying a home is an exciting feat and it’s easy to get wrapped up in the search process. If you’ve done your homework, you know what you’re looking for, desirable neighborhoods and comparable home prices but do you know the red flags to be looking for?

Do It Yourself Renovations and Flipped HomesSix Red Flags to be Aware of When Buying a House

Some homeowners or investors have the skills and ability to do a good job, while others may be lacking. However, updates in structural work, rewiring or plumbing often require permits and inspections. To save yourself some later expense, it’s best to ask for a list of additions or repairs that were completed, as well as proof of proper permits.

Fresh Paint

While we can hope new fresh paint is done for beautification before a house is listed, it’s always possible it’s covering something the seller doesn’t want you to see. A leaky pipe or a wiring mishap could be the reason for this quick fix, especially if it’s a random touch-up or just one wall of a room that’s been repainted.

Multiple Houses for Sale in a Neighborhood

When the market is hot to sell, it’s not uncommon to see a few houses listed. However, multiple houses can indicate unhappy homeowners leaving the source of a problem. Maybe there’s a house that gets too loud too often, or a big business moving to the neighborhood. These are things to consider and can even be determined with a meet and greet with potential neighbors to see how they like the area and why they think so many neighbors are looking to move.

Odors and Air Freshener

We all enjoy a nicely scented candle or fresh baked bread but if you enter a house with air fresheners in every room or an odd smell you just can’t place – there may be something hiding…literally. It could be a dead animal in the wall or under the house, or perhaps a pet failed at potty training, and it sunk into the subfloors. Whatever the cause, odors are something to seriously consider.

Outdated Roof

Buyers tend to spend more time checking out the inside of a home: the layout, bedrooms, cupboard space and storage, however, there are potentially big expenses lurking outside the home. Siding, landscaping, and paint are all easy to check out but even if a roof looks okay, it should be inspected by a professional because of the expense involved to fix or replace it.

Cracks, Stains or Sagging

Old or new – cracks are something to be concerned about. It can mean there’s structural shifting, a costly repair for any homeowner. Stains can indicate water damage, especially if they’re found on the ceiling, around windows or on exterior walls. Water doesn’t have to come from outside the home though, as leaky pipes or upstairs plumbing can drip through dry wall and cause mold and mildew to grow in the home. Sagging in the floors and ceilings is further evidence of water damage and should be carefully considered, too.

While other red flags can be found right in the listing and are a bit more obvious like being listed “as is” or being back on the market after a “sale fail”, the best way to save yourself some money is being proactive to look for these common red flags. Enjoy the house hunt but don’t fall head over heels without using all your senses.

IF you have concerns on a home you're deciding on, let us know. We want you to feel good about your purchase and that means knowing as much as you can about the property. Call us anytime for more local information. We work in the entire Denver area, specifically in Wheat Ridge, Arvada and Edgewater Colorado