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How to's and money-saving tips from resident homeowner and mortgage professional, Cathy West

Keep an eye open for these five red flags when buying a home

Before purchasing a house, you will want to be sure that you don't need to complete major home repairs to make it livable. In addition to hiring a professional inspector, you should be on the lookout for the following red flags:

No. 1 – Poor foundation
The foundation is an important part of a home's structure, so you will want to be sure that there are no issues in this area. One place to look at to determine if there are problems with the foundation is the yard. If it slopes toward the house, water may run into the foundation walls and the basement, which can lead to expensive repairs. It is also important to look for bulges or cracks that may signify structural issues. A home inspector should be able to spot these problems, but you should double-check before signing the dotted line. 

No. 2 – Funny smells
Red flags aren't always visual. In certain instances, strange smells inside a home could be a sign that costly repairs will be needed in the future. So, when taking a tour of a property, be sure you use your sense of smell. One of the biggest issues that has a weird smell is mold. And you don't want to buy a home with a mold problem. 

No. 3 – Termites and other pests
Making the jump from renting an apartment to owning a home can provide you with much more living space. But that doesn't mean you need any unwanted guests in your house, such as termites and other pests. A home inspector will be needed to detect termites, but you can probably notice if there are rats or mice when taking a tour of the home. Even if you aren't able to see them, keep an eye out for feces, as this is a major sign there is a pest problem. 

No. 4 – Worn-out roofing
One of the areas of the home that can lead to expensive repairs if not in good shape is the roof. It is important to consider the age and type of material used on this part of the house to determine what the risk is that you will need to replace it in the future. It is probably best to avoid a property that has asbestos roofing material, as this requires a costly disposal process due to the health dangers. 

No. 5 – Poor/old wiring
The electrical wiring is another area that needs to be inspected before purchase. If there are overloaded circuits or poor grounding, this could be a sign of old wiring. It is probably best to pass on such a home, as getting a house completely re-wired can be a costly expense. And, certain issues can potentially create a fire hazard. 

To receive a free quote, simply visit www.capwestmortgage.com/quote or call (866) 614-5959 to speak with a CapWest Mortgage representative today.

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