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It’s important to avoid getting too emotional when you’re looking for a new home to buy. While you should love your new house, it’s necessary to look at it with a critical eye before you decide to make a purchase offer. Even the most beautiful house may have secrets to hide, and you’ll help yourself by knowing how to spot those problem areas.

Watch For Water Damage

Look for stains on the walls and ceilings in the home. You should also be suspicious of areas that look freshly painted. These signs indicate plumbing problems, roof leaks, and other signs of damage. There may also be hidden mold growth in a home that shows significant signs of water damage. Since mold poses health risks and requires a professional mold remediation process, you will want to avoid buying a home with water damage.

Examine the Foundation Closely

Over time, the soil upon which a house is built will shift, and that will lead to foundation damage. Additionally, poor drainage on the property can cause rainwater to accumulate around your foundation, causing it to erode. Look for cracks, water marks, and signs that the foundation has shifted. You may not even need to go into the basement or crawlspace to find signs of foundation damage. If the patio or porch seems to have separated from the house, this suggests there are foundation issues.

Check Out the Electrical System

A home inspector can give you a more thorough assessment of the home’s electrical system, but there are things you should watch for as you tour any home. Flickering lights indicate a problem with energy distribution in the home. This may require replacing or updating the home’s electrical panel. Scorch marks on walls or outlets suggest hazardous shorts. Try operating a large appliance, such as a dishwasher or the HVAC system. If there’s a power failure, you would probably have to have dedicated circuits installed.

Even after you scrutinize a house yourself, you should still hire a home inspector to give the property a more thorough inspection. They can help you uncover problems that you may have missed. While you may still by the house, you’ll know what to expect before you sign anything.