Viewing a Property – How Sherlock Holmes Would
If you are viewing a property then this is something you need to take very seriously and something that you need to give a lot of time and attention to. For most of us, our real estate is the most expensive thing we will ever purchase and in fact the single biggest transaction we will ever make. This then means that we stand to invest a lot of money very smartly, or to foolishly waste a lot of money by choosing badly. At the same time this is somewhere you have to live for at least a few years, and that means that a bad piece of real estate can make your life a misery if you aren't careful.
Looking around the property well then is paramount and knowing which questions to ask the realtors and what to look for is something that will help you a lot to spot problems or things that wouldn't work for you. While using realtors will help you to avoid many problems, because they can inform you of the property's details, a lot of the matter is still down to being observant and alert. Just think – what would Sherlock Holmes do?
Thinking like a detective then means looking in the places other people wouldn't look, being as alert as possible and doing your research and preparation before hand. One tip right away then is to write down your list of questions you want to ask the realtors. This way you can make sure you don't forget what you wanted to ask, and you can make sure that you come away with the answers to what you need to know. Don't worry about how it looks – it will only make you appear well organized and planned.
Another thing you can write down is a list of things you should check, and this is again something that can exit your mind otherwise as soon as you step through the door of your potential future real estate. Some common and important things to look out for can completely slip your mind otherwise.
One thing to add to this list is mold. This is something that can be a problem in itself, but which can also indicate seepage or a damp environment. Places to look for mold are on the ceiling (particularly in the bathroom) and behind furniture and the radiator where you can find 'air pockets' which prevent circulation.
Likewise when looking around the real estate you should look carefully for cracks. Cracks in the wall or ceiling can show structural stress, but it's work asking the realtor as they may also be harmless. Something else to look for is 'patchy' paint work as this can sometimes demonstrate that someone has tried to cover up a more serious problem such as mold or cracks. So again be sure to mention it to your realtors.
You should also ask your realtor about the previous tenants. For instance ask why they left and how long they lived there. This can let you know whether or not they enjoyed living there, and so whether you are likely to.
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