Some questions when walking through a home:
- Do the mechanical systems (HVAC, garage door opener, hot water heater...) and appliances work?
- Does anything need to repaired or replaced? (Plumbing, roof, fireplace, ...) Will the seller repair or replace the items?
- How old are the roof, HVAC, appliances, carpet.
- Are any reports available?
a. Property Inspection
b. Termite Inspection
c. Roof Inspection
- Get a list of comparable properties for sale in the area.
- Has the house previously been in escrow, but fell out? If so, find out why? Was it a problem with the buyer getting financing or did the buyer find out there was something wrong with the home?
- In addition to the home price, you should ask whether there are any additional fees such association fees.
- What are the property taxes and what will they be when you buy?
- If the property shares a wall with another residence, such as a duplex or condo, make sure you view it while the neighbors are home to get an idea of how loud it is.
- Once you start looking at homes, a key question to ask is how long the house has been on the market. The amount of time will give you an idea of how flexible the owner is on price. If the house has been on the market for a month, the owner isn't going to be very flexible. If it has been on the market for six months, flexibility will definitely exist.
See Also: Real Estate Listings under Financial
Square feet calculation (size)
For real estate advertisings and listings, most agents determine square footage by measuring the exterior dimensions of the house.
The standard rule is that any rooms that are finished can count when calculating square footage and cubic footage of your home. Finished spaces are those that are heated and cooled in the way as the rest of the house.
American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standard is the same as above.
It includes thickness of walls, hallways, bathrooms and closets.
It does not include patios, porches, garages or open area over a vaulted ceiling.
HVAC - Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning
Dept of housing and urban development (hud.gov):
- HUD - 100 Q&A for Homebuyers at
Questions To Ask When Buying A House
last updated 23 Jan 2009