house hunting look out for these 7 deal-breakers

House-Hunting? Look Out for These 7 Deal-Breakers

Christyna Fong by Christyna Fong on Mar 12, 2016
Why you should care

Watch out for these tell-tale signs of a house you should walk away from.

Keep a close eye on randomly painted walls and ask loads of questions about the plumbing and wiring. If you suspect that the owner is covering up something serious, back away!

Make sure the house you’re investing in does not come with a set of costly fixes by watching out for these deal-breakers:

1 Bad Smells

Got a whiff of something strong when coming into the house? Don’t just shrug it off. It could be an indication of expensive plumbing problems.

If there are lots of candles and air fresheners throughout the house, it could mean that the owner or property agent is trying to mask bad odours. Keep your nose on high alert!

2 Rotted Wooden Floor or Walls

balcony with rotten wood


The rustic look of wood is in, but it’s susceptible to rotting, especially when exposed to humid weather.

Pay close attention to wood furnishing or details in the bathroom, kitchen, and patio.

Wood should be protected with a special finish or paint, and if it looks a bit crumbly, then bring this up with the seller.

3 Amateur Electrical or Plumbing Patch-Ups

Home flippers or handy-dandy homeowners may take it upon themselves to tackle small fixer-uppers around the house. Have you ever made a purchase that you were iffy about and regretted later? A house is a huge financial commitment, so buyer’s remorse should be avoided at all cost.

When inspecting a potential property, learn to keep an eye on these red flags that might pose a problem in the future.

4 Cracks in the Wall

cracks in wallCracks in the wall could indicate that the foundation was laid poorly. This could have serious structural implications later on.

Before biting the bullet, do a bit of research on that same developer’s projects from the past 10 to 30 years. If you find a pattern of complaints, you might want to reconsider that purchase.

5 Pests

wood termitesLook out for warning signs, like scuttling ants or chewed up wood. Getting a pest exterminator to fix the issue can be costly, especially if you have to replace all wooden structures that have become termite snack.

If you spot a pest issue but are still keen to make the purchase, negotiate with the owner to settle the problem before proceeding with the purchase.

6 Odd-One-Painted Walls

yellow paint with rollerA new coat of paint throughout the house means good business sense on the part of the owner. A new coat of paint on a random wall, however, could be a cover-up.

Keep an eye out for amateur-looking electrical or plumbing work. It may just be a Band-Aid fix, in which case the problem will most likely come back

7 Mould

mold on wallMould is hardly ever evident at first glance but can lead to some serious health repercussions, especially for younger children and pets. It can also cost a pretty penny to rectify.

Pay close attention when inspecting bathrooms and spaces that don’t get much sunlight like basements and attics, as they thrive in such (mouldy) conditions.

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Why you should care

Watch out for these tell-tale signs of a house you should walk away from.

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