4 Things First Time Home Buyers Always Overlook

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Unless you’re a billionaire, buying a home is more than just picking your favorite, grabbing the keys and living happily ever after. There are multiple factors to consider, especially if you’re buying a home for the first time. There are many items that often come as an afterthought, which can be costly and dangerous in the long run. Here are some common items first time home buyers overlook.

House Inspection

It's always a good idea to do an extensive amount of research and time into purchasing your dream home for the first time. It’s an even better idea for professional, second opinion. House inspections are great because they are great way to determine if your potential home lives up to what has been advertised.  Most people try to stray away from house inspections thinking that it’s unnecessarily expensive. We suggest forking over that $300-$500 to ensure that you won’t see any additional costs in the years ahead. A house inspection can even help you to negotiate for a lower price on the house if the results don’t match up with its true value. You can even re-negotiate seller’s repairs. Overall, you should think of a house inspection like this:

The more you know, the better your price can be.

Appliances

Most first time buyers are torn between buying new, used, or refurbished appliances, but their budget usually nudges them in a certain direction. While getting a good deal should be top of mind, the cheapest option may not be the smartest. Appliances that fall under this category would be microwaves and washing machines, due to their many moving parts and the high amount of pressure these appliances are likely to undergo.

Moral of the story? It’s way better to buy brand new appliances if they require massive amount of electricity than to buy something used and have to replace it after a short period of time.

Carbon-Monoxide Reader

Before diving into the significance of carbon monoxide safety, it’s important to note that there is a distinctive difference between a carbon monoxide reader & carbon monoxide detector. A carbon monoxide reader monitors the levels of CO that are in different areas in the house, where a carbon-monoxide detector alerts you when there is a dangerous amount of chemicals in the air. Most first time home buyers go with getting a detector over a reader, because it’s cheaper.

The lower temperatures of the winter months usually means closed (and sometimes plastically-sealed) windows and an increase of temperatures within the average household, thanks to fuel burning appliances. A fully functional carbon monoxide reader is important because it is able to detect harmful emission leaks (CO), that could be potentially life threatening. We highly recommend getting a reader, especially if you have children and elderly relatives, who are more likely to suffer from carbon-monoxide related illness.

When looking into your first home, make sure that:

  • There is a carbon-monoxide reader on each floor.
  • There is a carbon-monoxide reader close to car garages (especially if they’re attached). Cars emit CO every time they run, and if your garage is attached, you run a higher risk of spreading harmful toxins throughout the rest of your home.
  • You place your carbon monoxide reader according to the manufacturer’s recommendations.

Chimney Inspection

“I love sweeping chimneys!”

...Said no one ever.

However, you should know that a chimney inspection is just as important (if not more important) than chimney sweeping, especially when it comes to carbon monoxide safety and home fires. The extreme wear and tear from fireplace fires and harmful chemicals produced from wood, oil and gas makes for a chimney inspection at the top of the list of priorities for first time homebuyers.

Also, keep in mind that there different types of inspections:

Level 1: Checks that the chimney is free from obstruction and creosote.

Level 2: Conducted after the house is sold or if there has been any reported chimney or fireplace malfunctions. Crawl spaces, attics and a digital inspection of the chimney flue is also inspected.

Level 3: An in-depth inspection that involves removal and/or demolition of parts of the chimney.

Know What You’re Getting Into

As a first time home buyer,  it is imperative that you do your homework, and more importantly: take your time. Overlooking even one of the items or inspections above can lead to shelling out more money than you intended.

If you’re not sure of what to do first, our knowledgeable staff would be more than happy to guide you through the home buying process without going over your budget!