Realizing that you bought a lemon when you paid good, hard-earned money for it can be heart-breaking. It’s especially heart-breaking and frustrating if it’s something so close to your heart like your house. A lot of people sue home owners and home developers for selling them a house that turned out to be a lemon. The seriousness of this problem is even magnified by the fact that people who have just entered into a mortgage and spent a lot of money paying for the downpayment and moving are most likely to be already cash-strapped. Getting into a legal battle will be quite an emotional and financial hassle. Imagine having to deal with the frustrations of living in a lemon house, dealing with paying mortgage for such a house, and having to pay your legal fees on top of that.
It’s better to take some extra precautions in order to avoid buying a lemon house. Here are a few practical tips to help get you started:
1. Hire a house inspector to inspect the house – Hiring a professional is essential in finding things that you cannot find on your own. Even new houses may have issues that you can’t catch if you’re not trained. Ask your real estate agent for referrals and at what point you should have the house inspected. For example, if you want to buy Peoria real estate and are looking through Peoria homes for sale, it would be unreasonable to have every house you want to buy inspected. Find a home inspector that has good credentials and, if possible, referred by people you trust so that you can are sure that they will do a thorough job. Some people have the misfortune of hiring house inspectors that did sloppy jobs so it’s best to do your research before hiring anybody.
2. Hire specialized inspectors to inspect the house – General house inspectors don’t have the training to detect more serious flaws in the house such as the presence of toxic chemicals, severe pest or insect infestations, mold, and the likes. It’s better to invest a bit more money on specialized house inspectors to take care of detecting these serious issues.
3. Check whether doors and windows close properly – One indication that there’s something wrong with the structural integrity of the house is if the doors and windows don’t close properly. Long-time issues with the structural integrity of a house will become obvious as the house tends to get skewed a little, preventing windows and doors from closing as they should.
4. Look for strange-looking cracks – Little hairline cracks that run across floors and walls aren’t really cause for alarm but those that are larger than usual, longer, and are found on basement walls, foundations and the likes could be cause for worry. These cracks may indicate serious issues with structural integrity or water damage.
5. Look out for signs of water damage – Signs of water damage include water stains, cracks, mushy or soft surfaces, and the likes. It could indicate serious underlying issues such as flooding in teh area, a weakened base or structure, a leak within the walls (which tend to be hard to pinpoint), mold problems, and more.
There are other tell-tale signs that you’re making a bad move in purchasing a house, but it’s always best to get professional opinion regarding these things just to be sure.