We get it-you’re excited to check out new homes on the market, but don’t let the thrill of a new house overshadow the need for a thorough inspection which includes checking for water damage. It can save you a lot of time, stress, and even heartache later! Damage from water can affect the entire home – from the air you breathe to the walls and floor joists, so knowing what to look for is essential. Here are some tips to help you seek out any signs of water damage when touring a potential new home.
First Things First
In Alabama, sellers are not required to disclose any previous or current water damage in a home when listing it. Alabama law follows the “buyer beware” rules. There are a few exceptions to this rule though. For instance, if you ask a seller directly about water damage and they do not answer honestly and you find major water damage in the home after the purchase, you could potentially have a court case. There are a lot of variables with a situation that requires litigation, so we advise against even considering this scenario unless it’s absolutely necessary.
Many sellers will have already remedied any major water issues within their home as they realize how it can negatively affect the asking price and overall ability to sell it. Still, it is wise to know what to look for yourself.
Checking for Water Damage
When touring a potential new home, especially during a fast-paced market, here are some things to look for that could signal water damage:
While every home has its own unique smell, if you notice a damp, musty or moldy smell it should alert you that there may be water issues in the home. Trust your nose and know that you will need to investigate further.
Examine the Windows, Walls, and Doors
Depending on the season the humidity level in the home may vary. Condensation inside the house could be a sign of water issues. Take note of windows or doors that stick, paint that is peeling or bubbling, and of course any dark spots that could indicate mold. All of these are signs of water damage in the home.
Inspect the Basement or Crawlspace
In the excitement of envisioning yourself in the potential new home, many forget to look under them. Be sure to ask about the basement or crawl space and check it out too. While there, note the smells, look for pooling water, warped walls, rotten wood, dark or wet spots.
Walk the Perimeter Outside
When walking outside be sure to walk around the entire perimeter of the home. Look for pooling water. Examine the gutters and downspouts to see that they direct the water away from the home.
Signs of Water Damage: What Then?
If you discover signs of water damage in a potential new home, all hope is not lost. Talk with your realtor and if your heart is set make an offer. Then schedule a home inspection. Water Damage is the number one thing that home inspectors look for when inspecting homes. Never skimp on a home inspection. The signs you saw above could be past cosmetic damage from water that was remedied, but if not, have a professional waterproofing evaluation done.
Our team at Aqua-Guard can provide you with a quality evaluation and estimate on any water issues at the potential property. Water Damage is not always a deal-breaker when it comes to a new home purchase. You do need to know what investment is required before making your final decision towards purchasing. We can then waterproof your basement or encapsulate your crawlspace and you can rest assured that your new home will be dry for the life of the property. We include a life of the structure guarantee on our waterproofing work! Contact us today for a free consultation.