Buying a house can be both exciting and hectic at the same time. After all, it’s a huge commitment, and you’ll be spending your savings on it. Therefore, it’s essential to clear your doubts before signing a deal on the house.
Here are some questions buyers must ask to ensure they get all the information for a smooth and quick house purchase.
How much can you afford?
The first and foremost step is to get a clear idea of how much you can afford to spend on your house. Do not waste your time looking at options when you have not set a proper budget.
Once you’re setting up a price range, ensure that you include the sales price, home insurance, maintenance costs, property taxes, and renovation costs. After that, you need to see how much you can pay from your pocket and how much loan you’ll need.
After getting any idea of the loan amount, go ahead and apply for a pre-approval mortgage. By doing this, you can show the seller that you have the finances to buy the property. It will also help you get your offer accepted sooner.
Why is the seller selling the property?
Knowing why the seller is selling the property can affect your offer and help you get a better deal. If they’re selling it because they’re moving to a new city, they might be in a hurry and sell it for a lower price. However, if they’re selling it because the house has a problem, you can simply skip the property or ask for discounts. Whatever the reason is, a skilled real estate agent will try to find it and negotiate the best deal for it.
Plus, if the seller has had their property on the market for too long, they may easily accept your offer and quickly move ahead with the process.
Is the house located in an area prone to natural disasters?
Before buying a house, you must check whether it’s located in a disaster-prone area or not. Properties that are located in high-risk flood zones need flood insurance. Similarly, the ones in earthquake-prone areas may need earthquake insurance.
Also, ensure that you buy enough home insurance in case you need to rebuild the house completely when it gets destroyed. If your home doesn’t have insurance, a major disaster can leave a heavy dent in your wallet.
What comes in the sale?
Usually, everything attached to the house comes with the sale, such as the cabinets, window blinds, and faucets. However, sometimes there might be certain items that generally come with the house but are not included in the sale.
So, do not forget to ask the owner about what is included in the offer. Also, see what items you need and whether they’re willing to sell them or not.
How old is the roof of the house?
The roof is an essential aspect to look for while purchasing a house. Generally, a well-maintained roof can last for more than 30 years. But a poorly maintained or poorly installed roof will barely last for five or ten years.
So, before you go ahead and buy a house, make sure to check the roof properly. Look for any damage signs like leakage or missing roof tiles. Any roof over 20 years old may need expensive repairs, depending on how well-maintained they are. This inspection will help you negotiate better deals according to the level of damage.
Has the property had any extensions or renovations?
Sometimes, it may happen that the listing descriptions and property records do not match. To avoid that, one must ensure that the property is up to code before sealing the deal.
Search for information about any renovations or extensions the owner has made since owning the property. Go ahead and list the items they have replaced or added and ask for their manufacturing warranties. Knowing all this won’t just help you understand the house’s condition and how long the renovations will last but also give you an idea of why they’re selling the property for that price.
How long has it been since the house’s been up for sale?
If the house has been up for sale for a long time, it can be because it has a major issue or the sale price is too high. Ask your real estate agent to find the reason behind it. It won’t just help you present a better offer to the owner but also increase the chances of your success if the owner is desperate to sell the property quickly.
How much is the monthly fee for the house?
Although you might know your monthly mortgage payment values, it’s also necessary to calculate the other costs. These include property taxes, utility bills, homeowners association (HOA) fees, etc. Therefore, ask the seller’s agent to break down these possible costs and give you a proper value of how much you need to pay monthly.
How old are the home appliances?
Most homeowners sell their house appliances and systems with the house. And if you’re also looking for a similar deal, keep in mind that home appliances and major systems have finite lifespans. Hence, it’s essential to know how old are these appliances. It will give you an estimate of how much longer they’ll work before requiring any replacement.
Generally, most systems like furnaces and water heaters can easily work for 10-15 years if well-maintained. And the same goes for appliances like refrigerators, ovens, dryers, etc. So, ensure that you ask the owner for the bills and the warranties of these items.
If any of these are at risk of failing soon, you can ask the owner to cover the cost of repair or replacement. You can even ask them to reduce the house’s sale price instead.
Does the house have any safety hazards?
If you’re buying an old property, chances are it might have some safety hazards like mold problems, lead paint, etc. These can definitely affect the sale price of the property. So, we advise you to ask about these beforehand to have a better deal or see whether you want to skip this property.
While purchasing a house, one has tons of queries. Here, we tried to pick some essential questions that one must ask before buying a property. We hope we’re able to clear some of your doubts regarding house purchasing. However, keep in mind that the key to an easy and quick house buying process is proper communication with the agent and the seller. So, ensure that no misunderstandings or doubts are left when you finally seal the deal!