So you’ve finally saved a decent amount of money and you’re ready to get out of your apartment and into your own home in Los Angeles. Congratulations! Before you go and sign all of the paperwork, though, there are a lot of things that need your attention. Have you done any research about the area, or are you just interested in the house? Here are a few things that you need to consider before purchasing a home.
The Heating and Air Conditioning
This should be one of the very first things that you do when you’re considering purchasing a home. If you buy the property and neither works efficiently, you’re going to end up several thousand dollars in the hole. Turn them on and keep them running for a while to make sure they reach the proper temperatures. If the air conditioning works but doesn’t cool off quick enough, it may cost some serious money to repair. A quick inspection by a heating and air conditioning professional should help determine whether the systems are in good shape as well.
The Crime Rate
It’s important to know the area in which you’re moving. California is a huge state, and it’s possible that the neighborhood you’re looking to buy a house in could be in a bad area. Make sure to check crime reports for your neighborhood. Along with information such as theft and robberies, it also includes the locations of sex offenders. Prior to buying a house, this is essential research material.
The Area That the House is in
Someone showing you the property can give you a story, but the neighbors hold nothing back. There’s many available homes in the South Bay, and when you decide on one, you should speak with neighbors. Ask about any problems with the neighborhood, what the services are like, if there’s any inconveniences of living in that neighborhood, and if they rent or own their house. This will give you a broad idea of what the neighborhood is like.
The History of the House
Before putting cash down for a house, you should be aware of any previous issues that the house has had, as well as anything that has been repaired. Using this history, you can see what was wrong, what was repaired, and what materials were used. This will give you a huge heads-up on any issues that could potentially crop up in the future.
It’s extremely important that you get any house you’re considering living any amount of time in inspected by a professional. These professionals will alert you to all issues, large or small, and can give you an estimate on what it would cost to repair the issue. They can also point out any potential life threatening issues, such as mold that you may not have initially noticed.
Previous Utility Bills
In today’s economy, it’s not uncommon to struggle to pay some of the bills. It’s important that you be prepared. For any house you’re considering purchasing, ask for prior utility bills. This will give you an idea of how much it will cost each month to keep everything running. Pay attention to the mid-Summer and mid-Winter bills so you can get an idea as to how much heating and cooling the house will cost.
Perform Routine Checks
Routine checks of all the utilities in the house should be performed to make sure everything is in working order. Flush the toilets, check the faucets, and examine the electrical outlets. Note any issues that you run across, because issues with any of these things can have repair costs that can easily reach quadruple digits.
Remove Carpeting and Check for Mold
Carpets can hide some terrible secrets, so go ahead and pull all of it up. You’ll want to know if there’s any mold or mildew underneath the carpet, both of which could cause some serious issues. If you do run across any mold or mildew, you should talk with a professional and see about getting rid of it.
Buying a home is a huge purchase, and it’s important to know your house inside and out before you sign the paperwork. When you bought your first house, what issues did you run into?