Summary: Are you thinking of buying an older home? If so, there are certain things that you need to look out for, which we will discuss in this article.
Older homes sometimes offer more charm and character than the newer houses of today. They boast gabled roofs, crown moldings, hardwood floors and antique fixtures, among other things. These are traits you’d be hard=pressed to see in modern home construction.
Buying an old house is like buying a piece of local history. Its beautiful period features can give it a timeless beauty and grace that is hard to resist.
However, buying a house from another era can be an endeavor fraught with potential problems. Older houses are not necessarily built to the same electrical or plumbing standards of today. Plus, if they have not been maintained correctly through the years, they can turn into a serious money pit or a potential hazard.
If you’re planning to buy an older home, there are certain precautions you should take to protect yourself.
Here are six home buying tips to keep in mind if you are considering buying an older home:
Always hire a professional real estate inspector.
Bring a professional home inspector with you before you seal the deal on a home to take a close look at the property. A professional inspector is trained to spot structural damage or issues that might seem minor, but may cause major problems in the future.
Look for signs of moisture damage.
Many old houses have problems with moisture because over the years they have settled. If there is any damage from moisture or water, there could be mold in the home, which can be a hazard. Be on the lookout for any signs of water or moisture damage before you put in an offer.
Look out for old wiring.
If the old house you are considering has vintage wiring, such as the knob-and-tube technology that was popular around the 1920s and 1930s, plan to completely update the wiring for your safety. But having said that, many home insurance providers may not agree to insure the home if it has knob and tube wiring. And if you can’t get insurance off the bat, your lender may not agree to supply you with a mortgage.
You might need to add insulation.
Many older homes don’t have insulation in the walls or attic, which can increase the size of your energy bill. You’ll need to plan to add that to your budget if you decide to buy the home.
Be on the lookout for iron pipes.
Iron pipes which were popular up until 1940. But they can become clogged with rust and may need to be replaced. Again, this could be an issue in terms of getting homeowners insurance.
Have the house tested for asbestos.
If the home was built before the 1960s, the odds are pretty good that there is asbestos in the home. Asbestos was commonly used a building material in construction because of its fire retardant properties and affordability. But it can also be a hazard if it becomes airborne and people are exposed to it. If you suspect that there is asbestos in the home, have it tested.
These are just a few things to which to pay attention to when buying an older home.
Take time to inspect the property thoroughly. With proper attention, you can mix today’s modern technology with your home’s period features to create a combination of charm and safety.
Have Questions About Mortgages?
Are you curious about home loans? Sammamish Mortgage can help! We are a local, family-owned company based in Bellevue, Washington. We have been serving the entire state, as well as the broader Pacific Northwest region that includes Idaho, Colorado, and Oregon since 1992. We offer a wide variety of mortgage programs and products with flexible qualification criteria. Please contact us if you have mortgage-related questions.