I sing that song over and over to myself as I walk around my house sometimes. I just recently bought it about a year and a half ago and it always seems like something is going wrong. It’s not like it is that old of a house (built in 1982 I believe). My older brother bought a house a few years back which was well over 100 years old and it seems like my house is giving his a run for its money when it comes to problems.
Everything looked fine when we first looked at it. Nothing out of the ordinary, just the typical things like paint and a few finish details here and there that needed to be fixed. Well once you live in a place for a while you get to see all the inadequacies and the fine little details. Stuff like trim and molding boards not properly fitted or installed. I was recently down in the crawl space and found large amounts of insulation missing as well as a tube that was draining sink water all over the ground! The back yard is also a mess upon itself. When we first looked at it the option for a restoration seemed possible. Now it is a large dirt farm with patches of mostly weeds. The whole thing needs to be re-sodded.
This was my first ever home purchase, and surprisingly it doesn’t turn me off to the idea of purchasing another home in the future. I know what to look for now and where to look more importantly. I am a stickler for the details and actually checked out a lot with this first home. For example the listing stated that the air conditioner was in working order. Well the unit itself looked like something straight out of 1960’s Baghdad and did not cool any room at all. It basically just blew warm air into the home. Since the listing stated that the A/C worked that had to be replaced by the sellers and they were not happy campers about it! When your inspection happens your inspector goes over things that need to be replaced, like in our circumstance the hot water heater was on its last leg so we got a new one of those too.
There are many things that you won’t know don’t work very well for a while. Our garage door opener worked fine during the summer but when we got to the winter it would randomly lift the door halfway up sometimes. We also had a drainage issue with our kitchen sink that needed to be taken care of but we would have never seen during our walk through of the home. Just make sure to keep a keen eye out for the details and inspect the home multiple times. If you know someone that is in home construction or a carpenter have them take a walk through with you too.
Here’s a good video from a home inspector outlining common things to look for: