Look for these common issues prior to purchase to avoid a costly bill after you move in.
Buying a new home is exciting.
It's a symbol of a fresh start. You feel a sense of security. A feeling that you've really arrived into adulthood.
Then something breaks right after you move in. In most cases, you can't contact the seller to have them fix it. You can't call the landlord - you'd just be calling yourself.
Whether it's from normal wear and tear to gross negligence, things break in a home - whether it's a resale or new construction. (Oh yes, things break in newly constructed homes ALL the time!) Here are some of the most common repairs new home buyers face and how you can avoid them.
1. Plumbing - Plumbing issues are commonly missed during home buyer inspections.
Garbage disposals that stop working and toilets that keep running are common complaints by new homeowners. Fortunately, these are typically easy fixes that can be completed as a DIY project. Water leaks, no matter how small, should be addressed immediately. Pipes inside walls and underground can't be checked by a visual inspection. It may be a good idea to hire a licensed plumber to check for leaks during the inspection process.
2. Heating and AC - Mechanical components such as heating and air conditioning give fits to new home buyers.
HVAC issues are often attributed to different amounts of use from the previous to current homeowner. Simple maintenance such as frequent changing of filters can go a long way to eliminate stress on a system. Other common problems, like a blown capacitor or a leak in the refrigerant line may necessitate a call to your HVAC repairman. It's definitely a good idea to have a licensed HVAC contractor take a look during your home inspection as these repairs can be expensive.
3. Landscaping - Yard work takes a lot of time.
Now that you’ve been in your home for a while, it’s time to tidy it up a bit. Nice landscaping takes work. New home owners are often not accustomed to the time and expense associated with maintaining a lawn. Fortunately, this ongoing project can be a labor of love for many homeowners. For others, this chore can be easily passed along to your neighborhood landscaper.
No matter what you do, things are going to break. It just happens. However, you can protect your new investment by doing some legwork prior to purchase. You can also opt to get a home warranty that may help defray some or all costs of a repair. Beware: not all home warranty companies are created equally. See what you should look for here.
Have an interesting home repair story? We'd love to hear about it.