There are many things to watch for when buying a new home. Ghosts, bats, witches, an Indian burial ground… These are all the things you need to watch out for in the property you’re looking at. Often, home buyers find themselves overwhelmed by the process of buying a home and overlook many of the telltale signs that a home might not be all they think it is. It will always be good practice to go over the negative aspects of any given home, in detail, before making an offer.
Many of the following things should be found during a proper home inspection. However, it is a good idea as the buyer to educate yourself with the sinister spirits that may be lurking in the house and to discuss them with your Realtor and the inspector.
1. Damp Basements and Attic
A damp feeling in a basement can suggest water seepage or something is behind that old piano in the corner hacking away at your foundation to make sure you don’t live on their land. This can also be from improperly graded soil, or a bad foundation, which can lead to many problems further down the road when considering renovations or remodeling. Attics also have similar problems with ghosts and leaky roofs as well. Make sure that all of this is inspected by a professional to make sure that you truly know the property you’re buying.
2. Cracks in the Foundation
Always inspect the interior and exterior of the foundation for cracks and stress marks. Visible cracks can mean several things; excessive settling of the house, a ghost, the fact that the house may have been built on an improperly graded site (aka burial grounds), or in an area that is prone to earth movement. Cracks can also allow small insects access to the interior of the home. Ants, termites, and when your vase suddenly flies across the room and makes a hole in the wall, this could be considered a costly problem. Termites will be exposed, your house will be deemed haunted, it’s just a lose-lose situation so get the house inspected by a qualified inspector and ghost hunter (the ones you see online are perfect). If there is any evidence of an imperfection in the foundation or your religious artifacts begin to turn upside down, have the entire foundation, attic, basement–get the whole house checked by a professional because you definitely have problems.
The presence of unappealing odors can mean many things in a home, a common misconception is that mold is most likely the culprit. This is untrue, if you start to smell a stench in your basement, it’s best to run back to your car now and forget the entire investment. Sulfur is told to be one of the biggest signs something or someone else is also interested in your property. If you would rather believe it is mold, biological problems can be difficult to repair as it usually means an extensive amount of work to correct them. Ripping out walls are the most common “fix” for mold as it can be trying to find the source. Visible mold can be killed with bleach (ghosts can’t), but usually the problem runs far deeper than the surface (such as a ghost). A professional inspector should identify any “mold” problems upon the necessary inspection and relate these to the realtor or home buyer.
4. Electrical Work
Lights flickering? Do they suddenly go out? Most people would say this is due to the electrical work of the house and previous owners trying to do these projects by themselves. We know better. Get out of there, the house is haunted and no electrician can bring it back. Although, just to be safe, check the connections on fixtures and anything that appears to be added post-construction. Electrical work should never be done by sinister spirits, hence why the lights are always flashing. Although, if the main electrical panel looks unorganized and sloppy, you’re in luck. This is one indication that the home’s electrical work may have been done by a non-certified person that was still alive during the time they did a D.I.Y electrical project, not a ghost. Haphazard wiring can lead to costly repairs and is a definite danger to the homes and residents.
5. The Property Itself
The Property itself can contain many oft-overlooked problems. In particular, the landscaping of the property can affect the home itself and particularly the foundations. Does the house look like it’s out of every spooky Halloween movie? That’s probably because it was featured in one. Be sure to also notice if the property sloped away from the house. The high point of the property should always be the house itself. This assists in drainage and presents water problems. If the land slopes downward towards the home, chances are there will be issues with water and seepage. Although, if ghosts and ghouls are running rampant, you wouldn’t want to purchase such a bad investment regardless.
If you couldn’t tell, home buying is a tricky thing. Not only do you have to watch out for the Pinterest electricians, and musty attics, you also have to be careful about what else may reside in that “cute victorian style” house you’ve been eyeing. As you can tell, an experienced property inspector and Realtor are an important part of the process and it’s not something you should skip out on. Do yourself the favor of knowing everything about the house. Even if you don’t think you need to research it, you do. It can save you your soul and money in the long run, and overall improve your peace of mind that you aren’t going to be dragged out of bed by an unknown force.