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Purchasing an older home can be very tempting, even for the savviest of buyers. The bargain price and the potential of what that home could become is great for those who are willing to take on the challenge.
However, it is common for old homes to have issues, so knowing what to look for and the potential costs you may have to deal with is essential, especially when you are figuring out your budget for the move and the project. Arranging a surveyor to look over your property will help you gain a better understanding.
Here are some common problems with older homes that you may experience.
Inadequate heating is something that a home owner would want to avoid. If a new roof, windows, doors and fixed draughts don’t solve the issue, then the next step would be in the form of attic and cavity wall insulation.
The next step would be to check the radiator system, because it may struggle to warm up an old home, even if it is draught-free and insulated. It can cost a lot for a replacement.
Old electrics could be unsafe. A UK house survey will not include an electric test, so carrying out an electrical installation condition report (EICR) using a company like Trade Facilities Services will identify any defects, damage, deterioration and/or conditions that could become dangerous in the future.
A qualified electrician will run these tests for a good price. You can get your electrical certificate and testing at electricalsafetycertificate.co.uk.
Poor plumbing can lead to dirty water, leaks and other expensive damage. If your UK home was bult before the 1970s, then it could have lead pipework or solder to join the copper pipe fittings. This will need to be replaced by copper or plastic.
Rusted pipework and connections, as well as leaky taps will need to be replaced. If there are trees nearby, checking for pipework damage is especially important.
Spotting signs of structural damage in a potential home is crucial before you sign on the dotted line. This could be the difference between an inexpensive issue that can be fixed easily, or one that can’t be fixed and causes ongoing problems.
Signs of a structural problem include leaning and/or bulging walls, uneven, bouncy floors, sticking windows and doors, cracks, unusual smells and/or a bowed roof.
There are many hazards that you need to look out for when buying an older home. In the late 90s, asbestos was banned in the UK, but it had been used in construction for years. This naturally occurring fibre can cause serious medical issues if inhaled, like asbestosis and cancer, so you should carry out an asbestos test in old houses. Other hazards may come in the form of mould, mildew, damp and rot.
Understanding the common problems that you may face is essential before purchasing an older home. This will help you to prepare yourself and your budget for the renovation and journey ahead. It will also keep you and your household safe and secure once you have moved into your new property.
Disclosure: This is a collaborative post