Telltale Signs That Make a Home a Good – or Bad – Buy

If you’re looking for the perfect house in a good neighborhood at a great price, you may have to compromise to get what you want. Following are some things to consider:

Décor: You may cringe at the ’60s shag rugs, flocked wallpaper and lime green living room, but cosmetic changes cost very little and can transform a place.

Appliances and Fixtures: The avocado-colored appliances and brown bathroom fixtures may cost more to fix, but if this is your dream house it’s a sound investment. An addition will also boost the value of your property while making it more livable for you and your family.

However, there are also unseen problems to be concerned with, like mold, critters and cracked foundations.

Following are some things to look for before you sign on the dotted line:

  • Signs of water damage
  • Out-of-date fuse boxes
  • Recent – and badly done – patching jobs (inside and out)
  • Signs of neglect such as cracked walkways and sagging decks
  • Problems such as sagging roofs, shingle loss or chimneys with bricks missing; in the attic there may be traces of animal life or damp patches
  • Ill-fitting windows, outside walls that feel icy in winter and other possible signs of insulation problems