When viewing homes for sale in Richmond, Virginia, it’s important to watch out for signs of potential problems. Here are some red flags to be wary of:
When not resolved, foundation problems can be disastrous, and fixing them can be quite expensive. Some signs that indicate there’s something wrong with the foundation include:
- Large cracks on walls, ceilings, door and window frames, or in the basement
- Doors and windows that don’t fit into their frames and are difficult to open and close
- Uneven, slanting floors
Bug and Pest Problems
Destructive bugs and pests like termites, rodents and ants can do serious damage to a home. Unfortunately, they’re not easy to detect with the naked eye. It’s best to have a professional conduct a thorough bug and pest inspection. If you notice any of the following, however, alert your inspector about it:
- The home is surrounded by mature trees
- Damage, small holes, bored tracks or piles of dust on wooden beams, particularly in the attic or basement
- Dead insects in basements and on windows
- Rat, mice or pet droppings, particularly behind appliances or heavy furniture
Water damage can lead to a weakened structure, rotted wood, mold formation, and other serious home problems. If not fixed immediately, it can do further damage the house and pose a hazard to occupants. Some indications of water damage are:
- Large puddles around the foundation
- A musty odor. Be wary if the house is filled with an overpowering scent from a plug-in room freshener, potpourri or something baking. The owner might be trying to hide an unpleasant smell.
- Dark spots and water lines on the walls and ceilings. Watch out for random or select spots that have been freshly painted. This could be a way to hide signs of water damage.
- Rusted, water stained or leaking pipes. If different pipes are used, this could mean some have been damaged and replaced – and damaged pipes usually mean water problems.
- If the area is flood-prone or if there’s a body of water nearby, ask if the home has ever been flooded.
The roof is one of the most important parts of a house and among the most expensive to repair. Ask the seller about the age of the roof and have it inspected by a pro. You can also detect a roofing problem through various signs:
- Water lines and dark spots on the ceiling
- Loose, missing, broken or uneven shingles
- Warped or sagging roof
- Improper flashing
Inadequate ventilation can cause moisture retention, which can lead to mold and mildew problems, as well as interior and structural damage. It can also result in health problems, particularly if anyone in your family has asthma or other respiratory illnesses.
Try to peek inside the attic to see if adequate insulation has been installed. The following signs can also indicate poor ventilation:
- Condensation on windows
- Peeling or bubbled paint around windows, doors, and other openings
- Unpleasant or musty odor