Buying A Home? 3 Things To Look For During Your First Walk Through

Posted on: 18 April 2016


When it comes to real estate, homes can be listed for sale one day and have a pending offer the next. You may not have much time to decide on a home, with you often needing to make an offer soon after your initial walk through. Thankfully, there are some easy things to look for that can tell you if it's a home that is worth getting or one you should pass on.

The Age of The Furnace

One of the most expensive aspects of a home will be the utilities, with a working furnace being necessary for heat. If a furnace is on its last legs, you could be stuck with a major repair within your first few years in the home. See if there is any identifying information about the furnace that can tell you how old it is.

Start by peaking in an access panel of the furnace, since it is common to have a manufacturing date inside it. If not, look for a serial number that you can look up online later. There may be a sticker that has a list of service dates, which will tell you how old the sticker is at the very least.

When the furnace is between 15-25 years old, be aware that it could need replacement in the near future. 

The Plumbing

Another aspect that you can identify on your own is the type of plumbing that the home has. It's as easy as going into the basement and looking at the water pipes going from the water meter and the hot water heater.

For home construction, it was common to use galvanized plumbing until the 1960s, after which copper plumbing became the standard. If the home you are looking at was made before the 1960s, yet has copper plumbing, it is a sign that the homeowners upgraded the plumbing at some point. Galvanized plumbing runs the risk of rusting from the inside, so it could lead to an unexpected pipe burst.

The Foundation

If the basement is not finished, take a look at the foundation walls for signs of cracking. While small hairline cracks can occur due to the house settling over the years, major damage to a foundation wall could lead to water seeping into the home. You will need to have a waterproofing company repair the damage if you want to avoid water in your basement.

These are just a few things to look for when walking through a home. For more help, work with a real estate agent in your area to help point out these things for you.