W Henry Estates LLC

5 questions to ask when buying a house

Buying a home is one of the biggest investments and decisions you will make. Ask these questions when buying a home to ensure you are purchasing "the one."

Buying a home is one of the biggest investments and decisions you will ever make in life. It is an incredibly exciting milestone but can also be a stressful process. Naturally you will want to make sure the home you are purchasing is “the one” and to ensure it is, you need to ask the right questions.

What’s the neighborhood like?

When purchasing a house, explore the neighborhood! Take a look at the homes around it, try to meet some neighbors and envision living there. Find out about the local resources and what is nearby such as groceries stores, the local coffee shop, your new favorite restaurant, etc. What will your commute to work be like? If you have children you will want to look at the local school system, parks, activities, everything that will be important for them.

How much do utilities cost?

The average cost of utilities will provide some insight to the efficiency of the home. If the heating cost is through the roof perhaps you need to inquire about the insulation. If the electric is really high some of the appliances may be inefficient and in need of replacement. Who supplies the electric, local cable companies, etc. are all things you should inquire about. Is it public sewer or on septic?

These questions are also extremely important for your personal budget to get an idea of your monthly expenses. You should also ask about and budget for property taxes. 

Are there any issues?

A home inspection is such an important part of the process to spot any potential issues and can help point out any glaring problems such as a leaky roof, faulty systems, radon, etc.

Eventually, over time you will learn your new home and come to realize perhaps the bathroom shower leaks, the spigot to the washer machine is stripped and needs replacing, minor things that need some TLC – the more you can find out before purchasing, the better. This way you are prepared and can budget for potential issues and routine repairs. 

Will anything need replacing?

Perhaps the roof is in good shape but will need replacing in the next five years, or the stove is brand new but the dishwasher has seen better days. Before making the purchase find out as much as you can by asking questions and inspecting. You will want to take into consideration the cost of replacing things when making your offer, or simply for your own budget after close. You can also inquire about active warranties on things such as the hot water heater that was replaced two years ago.

What is included in the sale?

Fixtures typically stay with the house per contract, think of things such as ceiling fans and light covers, basically anything that would require a screwdriver, or more to remove. Many sellers will leave behind large appliances such as refrigerators and washers and dryers, but not always. It is important to ask upfront, so you do not walk in disappointed on moving day.

The more questions you ask and research you put in before making your purchase, the more prepared you will be, making you that much more comfortable and happy in your purchase