Caveat Emptor

So you want to buy a new home, but it’s your first time and you have no idea where to start. No problem. There are a few thing that you really should be looking out for, and there are many ways to get reliable, impartial advice before you buy. To purchase a property is about as big a decision as anyone is likely to make in their lifetime, and putting in the effort to make sure the sale goes through smoothly is mostly the responsibility of the buyer.

Caveat Emptor

So what should we do before making an offer on a property?  Here are as few tips to keep you on the right track:


What Condition is the Roof? – If you can’t get up on the roof yourself, find someone who can. You really don’t want to be buying a property which has problems up top. If there are worn or missing tiles, or if there is damaged or rusted sheeting you might be buying something which needs immediate attention. This in itself may not be a reason to avoid purchasing a property but it can certainly help negotiate a more suitable price.


Access Issues? Things like right of access should be disclosed on property reports but things can slip between the cracks sometimes and it’s always good advice to check with neighbours to enquire about boundary markers and any real or imagined access issues. You may find there are ongoing disputes which are best avoided. Neighbours are not always on the best of terms and if there’s a dispute over land, or parking, or a shared entrance, you should be as well informed as possible.


Proposed Development – Nobody is obliged to inform you of any future plans in the local area. If there is to be a new domestic or commercial development near a property it is your job to find out about it. Many a buyer has made the mistake of investing in their dream home only to discover a massive shopping complex or industrial park has just been given the green light.

This is where an estate agent may be super helpful. Your Property Hound buyers agents can check these issues for you.


What is the Commute Like? – Just because the property is three kilometers from your work doesn’t mean it is only a five minute drive. Get to know the road networks, and find out if there are issues with rush hour traffic. A house may be in a quiet residential area but there may be problems with bottleneck traffic zones just around the corner.


air conditioningHow old is the Heating/Aircon? – Buying a home with an outdated aircon can end up costing you a considerable amount of extra money. Always ask to have a look at a system while viewing a house. If in doubt it’s best to get a friend or family member who knows a little about engineering. Most of the time an expert isn’t required. If the unit doesn’t look too good, or sound too good you can probably take a guess that it’s not modern.


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