When it comes to buying your first property or, simply, moving home – there are many questions you should be asking. You should never focus on the interior, allowing the design of the home to entice you, but consider the structural soundness of the property. Does the roof need updating? Is the brickwork up to scratch? How is the garden; will you need to hire professional landscapers etc.?
It’s important to ask these questions and, if possible, hire a surveyor to ensure you are getting the most value for your money. With that in mind, we’re sharing our handy house buying checklist.
There’s no denying that the roof is important. The roof, ultimately, protects your home and saves you a lot of money in repairs should water get through. As such, you need to take care of it. Ask the homeowners when the last time they had the roof thoroughly checked, and the date in which it was installed. Like most things in life, roofs do come with a lifespan; anywhere between 25 to 50 years, depending on the type of roof. However, our North East roofers suggest the roof should be checked, at least, twice a year.
When enquiring about buying a house, we suggest conducting your own on the ground checklist. You should be able to see any signs of wear and tear. For instance, look for any roof tiles that may be curling or even completely missing. If you notice any signs of damage, you must ask the homeowners the plans to rectify the roof. If they choose to ignore these signs, they could end up costing you more in the long run – especially if water leaks into the home and causes damp and mold.
When it comes to your house buying checklist, you must always prioritise your roof. However, you certainly shouldn’t ignore the chimney. Similar to the roof, the chimney is completely exposed to the elements and will degrade over time. Water can also get into your home through the chimney, so you must act fast if you notice any signs of damage. Note all issues from the house viewing and speak to the homeowners about their plans to resolve before putting in an offer.
The brickwork and pointing are also critical for your viewing a house checklist. Ensure your brickwork pointing is in top shape before putting an offer in; one of our greatest house viewing tips… You can check yourself by simply placing your finger on the mortar between the bricks. If the mortar is flaking away as you touch it, the pointing needs updating. Alternatively, a surveyor will be able to spot these signs and alert you before you go ahead and buy the property.
The garden is particularly important, especially as many of your guests will make their first impression on your home from the state of the garden. If there are weeds, unkempt grass or even items from the home stored in the garden – discuss the plans for removal before you move in. Another tip for our buying a house questions is to check whether they know of any local landscapers or if any other neighbours use any; it could save you plenty of time and money.
Your front door is critical to the ‘kerb appeal’ of your home. If the front door isn’t secure or is, simply, looking tired and dated – you need to start asking questions now. Luckily, replacing a front door isn’t as time-consuming or as costly as replacing a new roof, so you should be able to do so if you choose to purchase the house.
However, for those looking to sell their home, updating the front door is a relatively budget-friendly house viewing tip.
You need to know about the area before you do move in. Many people sacrifice on location when purchasing their first house, but you should be careful and do your research on the area before settling for a home. Likewise, speak to the homeowners about their security for the home. Have they had any trouble, such as burglaries in the street?
It’s also worth noting for sellers, the addition of CCTV and other security items can, in some cases, substantially boost your home’s value.
We’ve touched on this before, but you should always hire a surveyor to check out the home you are looking to buy. They can detect any signs of damage and wear and tear that could, potentially, cost you more in the long-run. Similarly, if you do not opt for a surveyor, looking into hiring a local roofing company to assess the structural soundness of the property. You certainly do not want to be caught short with roof leaks or damage – especially as we move into the colder months.
If you would like to discuss any quotes or roofing assessments, fill out the online quote form and our North East roofers will be in touch as soon as possible.