Three things to look for when buy­ing a new home

Cecil Whig - - OURCECIL -

— Pur­chas­ing a new home is an ex­cit­ing and some­times stress­ful ex­pe­ri­ence. Whether you’re mov­ing to a new town or look­ing to up­grade from your cur­rent space, find­ing a new home re­quires pa­tience, ex­pert guid­ance and a keen eye for de­tail.

As a home seeker, the first thing you’ll eval­u­ate is lo­ca­tion, space and ameni­ties such as fire­places, gran­ite coun­ter­tops, a fin­ished base­ment, deck or a swim­ming pool. The next thing to con­sider is cost, shop­ping for the right mort­gage, mak­ing your down pay­ment and ne­go­ti­at­ing other fees. Fi­nally, you look at the var­i­ous fea­tures in­side and out­side the home that make it safe, con­ve­nient and en­ergy-ef­fi­cient for you and your fam­ily.

To ease some of the stress of house hunt­ing, here are a few top con­sid­er­a­tions to keep in mind through­out the process:

Al­ways start with an im­par­tial home in­spec­tion. Home in­spec­tions can help po­ten­tial buy­ers un­cover the struc­tural is­sues of a home, while also ex­am­in­ing if elec­tri­cal wiring and de­vices are up to code, plumb­ing lines are per­form­ing cor­rectly and HVAC sys­tems are run­ning ef­fi­ciently. In or­der to lo­cate and prop­erly eval­u­ate any con­cerns, it is cru­cial that you re­search the best im­par­tial home in­spec­tor in the area, be present dur­ing the in­spec­tion it­self and thor­oughly


read the in­spec­tion re­port on the prop­erty. Some­times is­sues iden­ti­fied are quick fixes which you can ad­dress your­self, such as re­plac­ing older elec­tri­cal switches and out­lets. You can eval­u­ate if you’re able to make these quick up­dates safely your­self by view­ing sam­ple in­stal­la­tions at www.­ton. How­ever, other con­di­tions may re­quire more la­bor-in­ten­sive re­pairs and out­side con­tract­ing, which should be in­cluded in your bud­get or ne­go­ti­ated with the seller be­fore pur­chas­ing your new place.

De­ter­mine any value-add fea­tures you want that are al­ready in the home. Ac­cord­ing to the Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Real­tors’ 2015 Pro­file of Home Buy­ers and Sell­ers, a home buyer’s ex­pected ten­ure in a newly pur­chased home is ap­prox­i­mately 14 years on av­er­age. While it’s not un­com­mon to change things the longer you live there, it’s equally im­por­tant to note the fea­tures that cer­tain prop­er­ties al­ready have dur­ing your ini­tial home search to avoid costly re­place­ments and con­struc­tion projects down the line. As you’re search­ing, keep the long-term in mind and con­sider what you may want in the fu­ture. Be sure to ask a lot of ques- tions dur­ing each walk-through. For ex­am­ple, are there enough bath­rooms to meet your fam­ily’s needs? Will your fam­ily grow? Does the kitchen have a gas line for ap­pli­ances? Is there a prop­erly in­stalled and up­dated heat­ing and cool­ing sys­tem? Does the master bed­room have a walk-in closet? What ameni­ties will make you and your fam­ily feel safe, happy and com­fort­able from the mo­ment you walk in the door and for years to come?

What mea­sures have been taken to make the home safe? It’s im­por­tant to con­sider a home’s safety fea­tures, es­pe­cially if you’re mov­ing into a new res­i­dence with chil­dren or pets. So, what clas­si­fies as a safety amenity? De­pend­ing on the home and lo­ca­tion, safety fea­tures should in­clude alarm sys­tems, work­ing door and win­dow locks, work­ing car­bon monox­ide de­tec­tors, smoke alarms and Arc Fault Cir­cuit In­ter­rupter (AFCI) Out­lets. Es­pe­cially when it comes to elec­tri­cal out­lets in ar­eas like the liv­ing room and bed­room, prod­ucts like Levi­ton’s Smart­lock­Pro AFCI Out­let should be in­stalled. These AFCI out­lets pre­vent elec­tri­cal fires in the home and are tam­per­re­sis­tant, pro­vid­ing added safety for all mem­bers of the fam­ily.

To see what other elec­tri­cal safety and home prod­ucts you should look for or look to in­stall in your po­ten­tial home, check out www.Levi­

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