Below we've listed all the things it's worth thinking about when you view a property. No property will be perfect on all fronts, but getting answers to the questions below - either by checking for yourself or asking the estate agent - should help you feel more confident about whether you want to put in an offer.
Inside each room:
As much as a property can look perfect, there may be some hidden problems you may not know about. Do the light switches work? Are there any signs of damp/mould/condensation? Even if you can't see any, can you smell it? Are there any exposed wires?
In regards to decor - what is it like, both style and condition-wise? Is there much storage?
Is the flooring in good condition? If there are cracks in the walls/ceiling, are any big enough to put the edge of a 10p in?
And finally convenience - how many power sockets are there and are they conveniently located? Are any fireplaces functional and do chimneys work? Are you very overlooked by neighbouring properties? All of these questions are important when you look inside each room.
Windows and doors:
Are they single/double/triple glazed, and are the frames in good condition? Do they open and close easily? Are they lockable?
Entering the bathroom, check if the taps work. How long does it take for hot water to come through and how strong is the water pressure in the shower? This may not be the first thing you’d check with viewing a house but it’s definitely something to consider on a second viewing.
How much work are you willing to put into the outside space? If not much check how high the maintenance is of the back garden. You must also check how overlooked the garden is and which direction it faces, south facing gets the most sun!
What is the general condition and age like of the brickwork, and are there any cracks? If the walls are rendered check the quality and standard as this is pricey to re-do.
Now onto the roof, are there any missing/cracked tiles? If there’s a chimney check that it’s straight! What state are the drains and gutters in - are they clean, new, moving the water correctly if it's raining? A lot of people miss checking the roof over, but it’s expensive to mend to make sure you do!
Is there garage, off-road or on-road parking? If on-road, will you need a permit? This is an added cost no one tells you about! Check that the burglar and fire alarms are working and what broadband and TV connections are currently set up. You also must take a glance at your mobile and check what the coverage is like. Then find the boiler and ask how old it is and what its service history is.
If you’d like to live in the house for a prolonged period of time, is there much scope for extending/renovating/adding value? Is there a loft? If so, how easy is it to access and might there be scope to convert it in the future? Finally, check the EPC energy rating, this is often overlooked but very important when viewing a house, if the online page doesn’t show one ask for it!
I hope these questions can get you thinking when you next view a potential home. There are a lot here but whether asked on the first or last viewing we recommend asking as much as you can before the keys are in your hands!