While it is important to have a formal inspection before closing on a home, there are a few red flags that you can keep an eye out for when looking for your dream home. Spotting these beforehand can give you a heads up that something may be wrong before putting in an offer.
Having a good foundation is one of the most important parts to your home. Look around the outside of your home, in the basement, and stick your head into the crawlspace if there is one. Things to look out for include cracking and signs of water leakage or damage. If the doors in the house do not fit in the frame well it may be a sign that the foundation needs some work.
If the house is being lived in or was recently occupied and it has signs of any infestations, that is a sign that the pests have been hard to get rid of and may pose an issue for you. Check for animal droppings, nests, pest control products, and gnaw marks.
Patches of Fresh Paint
If there are areas where the paint is fresh but the rest of the room appears to not be newly painted, there may be issues they are covering up. Though they could just be painting over a harmless stain, they could also be covering signs of water damage.
Smells and Stains
Strong smells are not only unpleasant and may take a while to remove from the home, but can also be a sign that the house has mold, mildew, or issues with leaks. Obvious staining on the walls, especially on the ceiling or near outdoor walls, can be a sign of a leaky roof or siding. If on interior walls, it could be an issue with the plumbing.