Open houses can make your search for a home to purchase much easier. They are generally held on the weekend when they are less likely to interfere with your work schedule, and during the day, allowing you a good clear look at properties in full sunlight. If you keep up with news of Madison Wisconsin home sales you can often arrange to attend several open houses back to back on the same day. It’s useful if you and your partner sit down beforehand to draw up a checklist of “must have” and “it’d be nice to have” qualities in your future home. This helps you to clarify what you want and agree on what is important. Bring this list along when attending open houses, together with a tape measure, pen and extra paper for recording your impressions of the properties. In addition to your personal wish list, here are six things to look for at an open house
Before you go inside
1. Check out the neighborhood. Before you fall in love with a particular house, make sure it is in a location where you’d be comfortable. Ask your realtor for data on recent Madison Wisconsin home sales in the area: who is buying and how much are they paying? Are surrounding homes tidy and well-kept? Do you see any “trouble spots” – potential sources of noise, odor or heavy traffic – nearby? (That convenient fast food joint may be great if it’s three blocks away, but not right next door.)
2. Observe the house’s exterior, especially the roof. A roof that seems neglected now may mean a very big headache for the property’s future owner. On the other hand, a well-kept roof and yard is a sign that the current owner has been willing to invest time and money in home maintenance.
Be on the lookout
3. Be alert to symptoms of potential problems. Musty smells, bubbling paint, uneven floors, moldy walls, mysterious cracks, all may be indicators of trouble ahead. Test doors for signs of warping and turn on faucets to verify adequate water pressure.
4. Notice how the home is heated and cooled, and the age and condition of the HVAC system. Look at the number of electric outlets. Measure to make sure your appliances and large furniture pieces would fit in the space available.
The good points
5. Be sensitive to the home’s attractive qualities. Even if you hate the current owner’s taste in décor and furnishings, try to look past them to see the “bone structure” of the house. Are you prepared to do some upgrading, such as stripping off ugly wallpaper, to reveal the property’s beautiful lines?
6. Ascertain exposures and amount of sunlight. In Madison Wisconsin home sales, most buyers are after a house that is bright and well ventilated. Make sure that plenty of sunshine and air enter the home. A sunny home creates a cheerful atmosphere and cross breezes will reduce your air conditioning bills in the summer months.