Tips for buy­ers when vis­it­ing a property

Whitsunday Times - - DOMAIN -

IN THE search for the per­fect property a buyer will no doubt visit a num­ber of im­per­fect prop­er­ties.

The Real Es­tate In­sti­tute of Queens­land (REIQ) rec­om­mends that when vis­it­ing a property a buyer should con­duct a thor­ough in­spec­tion of the property; make notes; read and un­der­stand the con­tract of sale; and or­gan­ise a build­ing and pest in­spec­tion, once a con­tract has been signed.

REIQ man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Dan Molloy said mak­ing notes was a good way of record­ing your first im­pres­sions of a property you are vis­it­ing.

“Your notes will make it eas­ier to com­pare prop­er­ties and may in­clude de­tails such as the date and ad­dress, the price range, fea­tures of the property, a quick sketch of the floor plan, what you liked about the property and what you didn’t,” he said.

“Read­ing and un­der­stand­ing the terms and con­di­tions of the con­tract of sale for a property is also very im­por­tant. A buyer should ask for a copy of the con­tract be­fore they com­mence look­ing.”

While the REIQ rec­om­mends that a pro­fes­sional build­ing and pest in­spec­tion be con­ducted once a con­tract has been signed, a buyer has the op­por­tu­nity to con­duct a pre­lim­i­nary in­spec­tion of a property when they are vis­it­ing.

Fol­low­ing are just a few as­pects the REIQ rec­om­mends buy­ers look out for when in­spect­ing a property.

- Check for signs of ris­ing damp, such as rot­ting car­pet or mould on the walls or ceil­ing;

- Check the walls and ceil­ings for warp­ing and cracks; - Test all light switches; and - Test the wa­ter pres­sure in hot and cold taps, and check to see that wa­ter drains well. Slow flow­ing wa­ter may in­di­cate blocked drains.

- In­spect the fences for sta­bil­ity and rot;

- Large trees around the house may have root sys­tems that can cause struc­tural prob­lems;

- Check that the land’s wa­ter run-off drains away from the house;

- Wa­ter stain­ing on the eaves may in­di­cate dam­aged gut­ters; and - Look at the roof for bro­ken tiles. For the best pro­tec­tion, the REIQ rec­om­mends you ar­range a pro­fes­sional build­ing in­spec­tion and or­gan­ise a pest as­sess­ment.

“Al­though an additional ex­pense, ar­rang­ing a build­ing in­spec­tion will pro­vide you with a writ­ten re­port de­tail­ing the con­di­tion of the struc­ture, wiring, plumb­ing and any other faults,” Mr Molloy said.

A pest in­spec­tion en­sures that the property you are look­ing to pur­chase is free from any ver­min that may im­pact on the con­di­tion of the property. These re­ports will al­low you to as­sess the faults and po­ten­tial re­pair and ex­ter­mi­na­tion costs - putting you in a bet­ter ne­go­ti­at­ing po­si­tion should you de­cide to buy the property.

If you’re think­ing of buy­ing or sell­ing your property, make sure you choose a REIQ ac­cred­ited agency.

“It is im­por­tant for con­sumers to be aware that not all real es­tate agents are REIQ ac­cred­ited agencies. The REIQ ac­cred­ited agency logo is dis­played in the front win­dow of ac­cred­ited agencies and serves as a vis­ual safe­guard to help con­sumers make in­formed and con­fi­dent choices,” Mr Molloy said.

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