looking at old house model with magnifying glass

There comes a time when we want to settle down. Not only being in a steady relationship, but by finding a place to call home. After a certain age — our 30s or 40s – people often come to realize that the American Dream of owning a house is still alive.

This inclination to homeownership is influenced by several factors, one of which is their financial position. The ability to fund a house determines the property size, type of neighbourhood, and shops and services available, especially when looking for the first home.

Developers recognise the demand by first-time buyers and design new build homes in places like Riverton, Utah, to cater to them. However, some buyers look at older houses as a cheaper option. Although a pre-owned house may appear to be a better option when negotiating a mortgage with a banker, the cost may escalate once the purchase is made.

Before opting for a pre-owned how, take stock of some of the problems others have encountered when buying an older home.

No Warranty

It’s a thrilling experience — happening upon a pre-owned house listing with the word “furnished” in its title. Yet this can prove to be quite troublesome, depending on the age of the home and how long it has been up for sale.

For example: appliances. Air conditioners and kitchen equipment have long lives and come with lengthy warranties that range from a year to five or more. Still, for microwaves, washing machines, tumble dryers and refrigerators to last as long as they’re supposed to, they need to be cleaned and maintained properly. You cannot guarantee if the appliances were maintained by the previous owner; if the house has been empty for months then the equipment will need a thorough service to ensure everything is in good working order — and replace what isn’t.

The Unknown

Listings are usually truthful since real estate experts view the properties before they go up for sale. However, older houses tend to develop problems that are easily overlooked.  Such issues include faulty wiring, mold on the walls or rising damp in the basement, and leaky roofs. It’s also possible that insects or rodents have made themselves at home and you’ll need to call out pest control and assess any damage.

Upkeep and Maintenance

repairing wirings

Pre-owned or older homes are often cheaper than the new builds on the market. However, the lower price tag can come with hidden fees due to the property’s need for upkeep and maintenance. Poorly build extensions and bad renovations by previous owners often result, at best, in an eyesore and at worst, requiring major improvements. Another expense may be due to a lack of care once it’s been put up for sale. Regardless of the reason behind it, homeowners who decide upon pre-owned or older homes should be prepared for out of pocket payments.

Given all the potential pitfalls of an older building and after the initial euphoria of house-hunting, some aspiring homeowners find the best option is to wait to find a new build. Instead of taking a gamble, they choose to continue saving for the right home at the right time and place.

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