5 Things to Look at Before You Buy a Home

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  • Consider accessibility, safety, certifications, and exterior when evaluating potential homes.
  • Check for water damage issues and ensure HVAC and electric systems are functioning correctly.
  • Ask about warranties and look at the energy efficiency of the home.
  • Inspect landscaping to ensure it is well-maintained and not in danger of damaging nearby structures.
  • Take the time to consider all factors before deciding on a home.

When it comes to buying a home, there’s so much more to consider than the price and location. You want a house that is safe, comfortable, and well-maintained. So how do you know if you’re getting what you pay for? Knowing which features are essential before you buy can save you from costly repairs down the line. Here are some critical things to look for when searching for your new home.

1. Accessibility

When looking at potential homes, consider whether each one will be accessible in the future. If you live in an area with cold winters, ensure that all walkways, driveways, and steps can easily be cleared of snow and ice. Check that stairs have handrails if needed, and check if any ramps are needed for wheelchair access.

An accessible location is also crucial from a practical and emotional standpoint. Consider the distance to your job or places you visit, such as grocery stores or shopping centers. What about schools for children or grandchildren? Do you have family nearby that you may want to be closer to? Take this into account when evaluating potential homes.

2. Safety

fire extinguishers concept of fire prevention

When evaluating a home, look for any potential safety hazards. Check for issues like leaking gas, asbestos, lead-based paint, or mold. Does the area have a high crime rate? Are there suitable fire safety precautions in place? It is crucial to make sure that the home you choose will be safe and secure.


Make sure to ask for copies of any applicable certifications. This includes certificates for things like plumbing, electrical, HVAC, and pest control. Ask about home inspections and ensure that the inspector is certified.

3. Exterior

The outside of your home is just as important as the inside! Inspect the roof and siding for any signs of damage or wear and tear, such as loose shingles or cracks in the paint. Also, check around windows and doors to ensure everything is sealed tightly against drafts. Your home’s exterior can significantly impact your energy bills, so ensure it’s in good shape.


Your home’s landscaping is also something to consider. If there are trees or shrubs, ensure they are well-maintained and not in danger of damaging nearby structures. Check for drainage issues and if the soil is suitable for gardening or other outdoor activities.

4. Plumbing and Water Damage

hand repairing pipes with wrench

Water can cause serious damage to a home if left unchecked — so don’t forget to check for signs of water damage when inspecting a potential property! Look for signs of dampness on walls or ceilings and mold growth around window sills or baseboards. Make sure all faucets are working correctly, and check under sinks for any evidence of leaks or water seeping up through floorboards. Finally, ask about recent plumbing repairs or replacements — this information could save you thousands down the line!

5. HVAC and Electric

It’s essential to ensure all heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems and the electric system are functioning correctly before signing on the dotted line! Ask about recent servicing dates on both systems — this will give you an idea of how long until they need another service appointment (which should generally be done once every few years).


Also, remember to ask about warranties on both systems — these can sometimes cover parts or labor costs associated with repairs down the line! Reliable emergency air conditioning repair services can also provide peace of mind to maintain these systems and ensure they continue running smoothly.

Efficiency and sustainability

Many homes’ electric bills can be drastically reduced if they are properly insulated and energy efficient — so remember to ask about the sustainability of your potential home before you buy. Finding out what insulation is in place and looking for double-glazed windows or solar panels are great places to start. If anything needs replacing or upgrading, this should be factored into the price of the home — as these are expensive investments that can help save money in the long term.

Closing Thoughts

When purchasing a home, it is vital to take the time to consider all factors before making your final decision. By looking at accessibility, safety, certifications, exterior, landscaping, and plumbing/water damage (as well as HVAC and electric), you’ll be able to make an informed decision that will save you from costly surprises down the line. Considering energy efficiency and sustainability will also help you keep your bills low for years. Remember — when in doubt, ask questions or hire a professional inspector for peace of mind! With these tips in mind, buying a home just got simpler!



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