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how to look at a houseHow to look at a house is a skill you need to learn.  Before you click your way to another website, take a minute to read what I have for you now.

Just because no one told you how to look at a house doesn’t mean it isn’t something you need to know.  Consider this for a moment.

If you’re like most home buyers, you’re whipped on Sunday nights.  You went to 1 zillion open houses making sure you saw every house on your list.  Because you had 100 homes to see in 25 different towns, you didn’t spend much time in any of them.

That’s all right.  It only takes a few minutes to see a house.  Not exactly.

Open houses are great and not so great.  You see a lot of homes in a fehow to look at a housew hours; sellers get a lot of buyers into their house.  If you’re starting out, it can be very helpful because you find out what you don’t like as well as what you do.

Here’s what’s wrong with open houses – it’s not a coordinated, logical search.  As a result, you really don’t understand the market as well as you should.  You also waste a lot of time going to homes that aren’t right for you.  Because you’ve been racing through homes, you’ve learned to look on a very surface level.

Oh sure, you might walk through a home you’re considering slowly but you’re still not looking at it correctly.  As a result, you can miss a lot.

Here are a few tips for you:

  1. The Roof.  Go across the street or to the back of a yard.  You have to be a distance away to see a roof.  Walk from side to side – look at the roof at an angle.  You can’t see swaying and shingle lifting when you look at it straight on.
  2. Don’t be so polite.  Walk into the rooms and across at an angle.  No house is perfect.  If there’s a shift you want to know about it now; not after you buy the house.  You can’t feel space you don’t walk into.  How about squeaky floors.  Viewing a room from the doorway is not the same as walking into it.
  3. Take time in the basement – look at the manufacturer names on the systems.  Did the owner invest in quality brands or not?  Behind those boxes along the wall does it look like there’s a water problem being covered up?
  4. Open kitchen cabinet doors and drawers.  Are the cabinets refaced?  When you pull out a drawer does it fall down or stay straight out?  Is the oven vent really going to the outside? make sure to check if you need help doing some changes in your kitchen

how to look at a houseI spend a good amount of time teaching my buyers how to look at a house.  We are not home inspectors but I don’t want you to miss anything we should be able to see.  There are many issues a buyer can miss.  Learn how to look at a house properly.  Find an agent who will take the time to show you.  You can, of course, call me at 201-741-8490 to make an appointment to view homes.


Watch for future blog articles that go into more detail on what to look for when viewing homes.  I’ll be writing them this fall.

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