Buying a house is an exciting time. It is ideal when you are not rushed and can take as much time to look for the perfect home. Unfortunately, that is not always the case, and you may be on a tight timeline. Regardless of how much or little time you have, it is essential to know the common areas to look for problems when looking for your new house. In the United States, 80% of the houses are at minimum 20 years old and will require some remodeling or improvement. When looking for a house in Denver, these are some red flags to which you should pay attention.
Roofing and Foundation
Denver has its fair share of inclement and extreme weather. You will experience snow, sleet, hail, and rain. All of these can lead to havoc on your roof and foundation. A standard roof that was popular some years ago in Denver was the T-Lock roof. It held up well against the wind. However, these roofs can no longer be repaired because they are not found on the market. They must be replaced if there is any problem with them. It is likely you are going to find foundation issues during your search. There are about 25% of the homes in the US with structural distress, 5% of those homes will have significant structural damage. During your search, you want to pay attention to cracking concrete. Concrete surfaces can shift and crack, which can cause water pooling.
Water can do an incredible amount of damage to a home. Unfortunately, many of the homes in Denver do not have a proper drainage system. Gutters are vital for adequate drainage because they direct water away from the house. Unfortunately, many houses in Denver have downspouts that are not long enough. You want a home to have a downspout with a 10% slope within five feet of the foundation. When the gutters are not functioning correctly, this can accumulate water along the foundation and in the basement. When water sits along the foundation, it can cause extensive and expensive damage. It could also prevent you from being able to sell the house in the future. In addition, if the house does not have proper grading, that will allow water in your basement, which leads to water damage.
When looking at older houses in Denver, you want to pay attention to the interior of the house. Often materials used to build older homes are no longer legal today. Lead paint is one of those materials. The older the house, the more likely you will find lead-based paint inside. If the house was built between 1960 and 1977, there is a 24% chance it contains lead-based paint. If the house was built between 1940 and 1959, that percentage would increase to 69%. However, a home built before 1940 has an 87% chance of containing lead-based paint.
When looking for a house in Denver, there is a chance that the house may have faulty wiring that is not up to code. If it has aluminum wiring, that needs to be replaced. If there are loose wires, that could lead to sparks and a potential for fire. Older homes do not typically have ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlets. These are requirements for areas with water, such as kitchens and bathrooms.
When looking for your house in Denver, you should pay attention to these possible red flags. If you opt to purchase a home with any of these issues, you will have to repair or replace the item. On the other hand, you may ask the seller to fix some things before you make your purchase. Either way, you want to contact a professional to handle any of these potential red flags.