15 Questions to Ask When Visiting a House
Planning to buy a new home? Be
prepared. When you visit a house, be sure to have this list of questions on
hand. It’s the perfect tool to help you make an informed decision and avoid
Two important points
- Carefully read the seller’s declaration, a document provided by the selling broker that constitutes the “resume” of the property.
- Always ask for the exact dates of any renovations, installations, and inspections as well as the status of any associated warranties (some are non-transferable).
The Interior of the Property
1. History: Has there been any major damage (fire, flood, etc.)? What renovations have been done over the years? Are there any repairs that need to be done? Have there been any tests for pyrite, asbestos, or radon?
2. Rooms and Storage: Are these enough for all your needs? Is there room for expansion?
3. Windows: How do they work? Are the thermostats still effective?
4. Electrical system: Is the electrical panel in good condition and in compliance with current regulations (link to the Régie du bâtiment du Québec’s regulations)? What is its power?
5. Heating and Insulation: Electric, gas, oil or wood burning? Central system or heat pump? A fireplace: does it meet all insurance requirements? Has any maintenance been done? By whom? What type of insulation is used?
6. Plumbing: What are the materials? Was any work done recently (and by whom?) Is the water heater rented or has it been changed recently?
7. Ceiling and Walls: Has there ever been mould? Has it been
8. Roof: What is its condition? Are there any problems?
9. Home: Is the siding in good condition? Are there any cracks?
10. Land: What are the boundaries? Who does the maintenance? Who owns the fences? Are there municipal parking regulations?
11. Sheds, Patio, Balcony and Pool: Is everything safe and in compliance with
12. Check costs for
- municipal and school taxes
- condominium fees
- equipment rental
13. The Neighbourhood: Quiet or busy? Street speed limit? How old are the children in the area? What is nearby: bus stops, parks, factories, schools, businesses, busy streets, etc.?
14. Noise: Check for proximity to railroads, airports, churches, highways, etc.
Inclusions and Exclusions
15. What items are included and excluded from the sale (light fixtures, shed, curtains, etc.)? If an item is not included, ask the question directly. You may want to include it in your offer to purchase.
If the visit and the answers obtained have convinced you, do business with a real estate broker.They will help you make a conditional offer to purchase after a pre-purchase inspection.This is another way to protect yourself… and then enjoy your new home with peace of mind.