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Thread: Questions to ask for a new house?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2009

    Questions to ask for a new house?

    I'm so excited! My husband and I are going to look at a house on Monday, and possibly buying it.

    Anyone have any good advice for us? Some questions we are going to ask are "why are the previous owners moving?", previous cost of electric bills.

    I can't think of any others, even though I know there are others I just am missing.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    In My Publisher's Public Group!
    Well, here is what I can remember when we looked at our current home, seven years ago:

    How old is the house/when was it built?
    When was the roof last repaired/replaced?

    For a rural area: When was the sewer last pumped out and is it a drilled/artisian well or a dug well?

    Dad also suggested that we look under the house if possible... Look at the condition of the water pipes, the condition of the underside of the floors, and the foundation.

    He told us to "stomp" across the floors to see how sturdy they were. I literally jumped up and down on the floor in the living room of our current house, just to make sure it was strong and didn't collapse!!

    I hope this helps.
    "The road to hell is paved with adverbs." - Stephen King.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    In Love
    If there are airconditioning and water heating units I'd advise asking when the last time they were replaced or serviced or how old they are.

    I don't know about your area but where I live an inspector has to come out and inspect a house before a loan is approved. If you aren't required you might want to look around and see if you can hire one to do a once over on the house to tell exactly what you're getting into.

    Oh yeah and Congrats!!!

    "Keep away from small people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great." --Mark Twain

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Flint, MI aka Hell in a handbasket
    Also, ask about the condition of the furnace and hot water heater. You don't want to get caught with those unexpected expenses after your first month there!
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    NYC ChefWitch & food psycho
    Also, if you're going to get the house appraised, do NOT use one recommended by the realtor, go outside of the realty office and hire your own.

    Ask if the house has been checked for mold and if it has, you want to see the results.
    "Knowledge without mileage is bullsh*t"... Henry Rollins

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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Definitely get an independent inspection done. We didn't and had to replace the furnace and a/c and will be paying that off forever. Check the windows also and make sure they are in good condition as that is where you lose the most air during winter. You may also have the property surveyed so there in case there are disputes as to where the property ends. Good luck!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Don't waste time asking the owners or Realtor about the house. They both want to make money, from you!

    Have your own inspection done.
    Go to your city hall and the register of deeds has all the legal info on the property. Get copies!

    Go look yourself at everything.

    It cost money to consider buying a house. You have to pay to have everything checked out before you lock a bid in.
    Make sure you bid and have a clause that lets you opt out if inspections or property info isn't to your liking.

    Have the entire house inspected, inside and out and get a report in writing.

    Also make sure you know what the local codes are. Make sure you know where this property stands in regards to the codes...what grandfathered in?
    Whomever is going to finance to them! They are going to be just as interested in everything as you since its there money your borrowing and they will have the final say.

    Go with an old fashion 30 yr fixed loan and not an adjustable one!
    IMO your own bank is the best place to go.
    I don't have faith in mortgage brokers. They have a commission they care about more than good financial advice for you!

    Do a lot of research and homework. Buying a home is a major deal.

    Also know what points are. Know the insurance needs.
    Know what you want from insurance and what it will cost you.

    Know the taxes on the place and make sure no back taxes are owed. New buyers will get that tax debt!

    Also know the closing cost and money down that's needed.

    Expect it to take a long time!
    Buying a house is a slow process and often frustrating process.

    We knew exactly what we where doing when we bought this place, it wasn't our first. It took us 6 months from the day we placed our bid to the day we signed the final papers at the closing.
    It cost a pretty penny also during that 6 months to pay for all the inspections and inquiries we had done ourselves.

    Oh mortgage insurance may be mandatory from the lender. Doesn't matter. No matter what, look into your own insurance. Mortgage insurance insures the debt, not your end!! If something happens the bank is secure, not you or your stuff!!
    Get full coverage 'home owner insurance' with replacement value for your personal property!
    Most mistakes are in the insurance end. Dont make mistakes. Get a good insurance agent on your own.
    Last edited by Shanti; September 11th, 2009 at 01:46 PM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    I recommend getting an inspection done, but don't assume the inspector is infallible either.

    The day I moved into my house, I had no heat. The inspector kind of missed that the oil tank leaked and the chimney was full of cracks. I ended up spending $2k within the first week.

    I also didn't get any keys for the front door because the seller didn't actually *have* any keys. She never locked the door in the 2 years she lived there. Gotta love rural living.

    Oh, and be careful buying a property with large yard or acreage in the winter. You never know what the snow might be covering up. I filled an industrial sized dumpster with garbage, and could probably do it a second time still. Nearly all had been hidden under the snow.
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