Inspecting Foreclosures

Can you Judge a Book by it's Cover?

Do you doubt your abilities in inspecting closely a Home?

Can you judge a book by its cover? Many times that is true. You can gauge the work involved in bringing up the standards of a property by looking at the outside. If you already see structural problems, a sagging roof, sagging porch, deteriorating foundation, or in other words truly major problems run don’t walk away.

Yet, if these exterior problems seem to be minor, the ONLY way to really assess properties is to get inside! Many times you can get a preview on line through some of the web sites already mentioned, but it’s usually the case with foreclosures and distressed properties that the agent doesn’t either want to take the time for the low commission he is to make, but also it may drive some away.

You don’t have to sign up with a real estate brokerage to get inside homes, if you find one that won’t show you a home unless you sign up with a buyer’s agency with them, find another. In most communities there are dozens of agents out there willing to show a potential buyer a home.

Bring along a note book and paper, or if you are high tech, a digital camcorder to get a feel for the exterior or interior of a prospective project. What if when inspecting a home you find Mold? Do you know how to deal with it?

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Let's Start with Exteriors

Roof- no sagging, if composition shingles, is there any curling, missing shingles, loose or rotting soffit and fascia, if metal will it need repair, paint, note that the roof when you sell should have 3-5 years life left in it or it should be new, what shape are gutters in, etc.

Siding- if wood, how’s the paint, even by wood windows, will you have to paint the exterior or siding, all peeling paint needs to be repaired; too much may require a full exterior painting. Note that some vinyl siding and most aluminum siding may be painted, and can be sprayed

Windows- are they replacement or original, if original are they newer than 1978 to avoid lead paint concerns, are the storms and screens there, any peeling paint, cracked glass, or loose and missing glazing will need to be cared for. Exterior Doors- are they true exterior or wood, some may have to be replaced, most screen doors on these homes are already damage.

Foundations- look for loose block, cracks in poured foundations, drainage, does all landscaping lead water away from home, signs of any infestation by termites or carpenter ants, (one thing I do recommend even if you think you are the Person who examines their own home, is to get a Professional Termite inspection, with a year guarantee) If you are looking for a Qualified Home Inspector in West Michigan, check with Paul Siegel, Lake State Inspection,LLC.

Inspecting a Typical Foreclosed Home (Free Video)

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