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Anyone looking for a new cell phone reads test reports and listens to friends. But how do you proceed if you want to buy a house or apartment - and need someone who recognizes defects and problems?
You regularly leaf through the newspaper's real estate pages, your search request is on the Internet in a real estate database, and friends and acquaintances listen to you. And then finally one day: the perfect old building with high stucco ceilings and French windows! Or the small house with a beautifully grown garden full of fruit trees and enough space for a swing and rabbit enclosure …
Make yourself smart
The more you look at an object, the more rationally you should approach the decision for or against the purchase. Write a list of everything that is important to you and go through it point by point for each object. Evaluate the location, look around the neighborhood and check the connection to the transport network. Check whether there is a kindergarten nearby, whether the school can be reached by bike, where the bus stop is. Those who are only guided by their feelings and enthusiasm for the property they want can overlook weak points. And later has to invest a lot of money to repair the damage - in addition to the purchase price.
But what it looks like inside the house, at what level the technology is, whether major modernization work is pending, the walls in the basement are damp and where further construction defects could be hidden - this information cannot be found in the broker's brochure.
Eyes and nose open
Proceed systematically on your first tour and examine the house from the basement to the roof. Wetness is one of the main enemies of buildings. Check whether the house is on dry feet: damp cellar walls, musty smell, mold on the walls are alarm signals. Moisture can also penetrate from above: if the roof is defective, it rains in, beams can rot or be attacked by pests. Take a flashlight with you and shine in dark corners and behind curtains. Check window sills and outside corners for mold to grow. Read the old building description, the renovation protocols and let us show you the energy pass.
Reading is easy on the nerves
There is a brochure at the consumer advice center that deals with the most common old building problems. Including checklists, a clear list of identifying features and recommendations on how you can remedy the defects: "Purchase of a used house", 9.90 euros, plus shipping costs: www.vzbv.de.
In this post you read:
- How to find an appraiser
- Visited the house - what now?