Call them “red flags,” or “HEY, don’t-buy-this-house” signs, but there are certain symptoms of a suffering home that you need to be aware of before you fall in love with a sexy fireplace or a to-die-for kitchen.
Now, don’t get me wrong, most houses, even new ones, have something wrong. Even if it’s a problem as easy to fix as a drippy faucet, no home is perfect.
But we need to look at the biggies – those items that require emptying your bank account to repair. They don’t necessarily need to be considered deal breakers, but should prompt you to have the home inspected by the appropriate professional. We at Venterra Real Estate can certainly recommend great home inspectors.
“WHAT’S THAT SMELL”
Can you imagine taking a shower and being greeted by raw sewage bubbling up through the drain? And YES, this can and does happen! It’s gross and it’s caused by a clogged sewer line.
We can find clues for further investigation, which would prompt us to have a sewer scope done during your inspection.
First we test the drains. If it drains slowly, or you hear gurgling sounds from the drain or from the toilet. We need to take action with a sewer scope. Also if the property has a lot of trees! Tree root damaged lines can cost up to $13,000 for a 100 foot sewer line.
Bottom line, we need to inspect and make sure your sewer lines are in good, working condition.
A home’s foundation has three functions:
- Support the weight of the entire structure
- Helps the home withstand natural disasters
- Keep ground moisture from seeping into the structure
Most homeowners will pay around $4,000 to repair foundation issues. Major repairs involving hydraulic piers can cost $3,500 a pier and you’ll typically need 1 pier every 3-6 feet.
As real estate professionals we walk through a property and we look for sloping or sagging floors, cracks in the foundation, walls and floors, doors and windows that don’t open properly and gaps around window frames and exterior doors.
Colorado Springs has a lot of expansive soils that are prone to large movement directly related to changes in water content. This will move concrete flatwork, roads, lift and pitch walls and could really cause some expensive damage.
Water is the real enemy to a home. We must make sure it’s draining away from the house!
Low water pressure is a lot more than an annoyance when trying to rinse the soap off your body in the shower. It may be a symptom of major plumbing problems.
Cracks or other damage to pipes, may result in a leak and that too would lower the water pressure. Look for evidence of leaks such as damp spots on the floors and walls, signs of mold or a hissing sound when the water is running.
We will also look for galvanized steel water supply lines. These pipes build up with sediment on the inside, making the inside diameter of the pipe smaller and smaller over time. Eventually to the point where water flow in unusable. They also corrode at the joints, which can lead to leaks.
Do you want to change out all the plumbing pipes? On average new homeowners that replace the galvanized steel with new copper piping pay between $8,000 to $10,000. Or you can go with PEX piping, which would be around $4,000 to $6,000.
If you suspect any problem, we urge you to bring in a specialist. A structural engineer can put your mind at ease about cracks in the foundation and a plumbing contractor can give you an idea of the state of the home’s pipes.
This is not to scare you out of buying a home. This should however encourage you to seek out the help of a professional Realtor. Contact us!
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