Common Problems to Look for in an Old Home

Common Problems to Look for in an Old Home
  • Opening Intro -

    When you're in the process of buying an older home, it might initially seem like you're getting a great deal on a historic property.

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As excited as you may be, it’s crucial that you take a minute to acknowledge the issues you might have to deal with once you move in.

After all, no matter how well a home has been taken care of over the years, it’s bound to have a few things you’ll need to fix up. These are some of the common problems to look for in an old home and how to go about fixing them.

Lead Paint and Asbestos

Unfortunately, homes built before the turn of the century are likely to contain materials that can cause a series of health- and medical-related issues. Lead paint and asbestos are two of these particularly dangerous substances.

They’re generally harmless when left intact, but once they begin breaking down with age and floating through the air, they become a major hazard for you and your family. As such, it’s important that you find out whether your home has these materials and hire professionals to remove them.

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Foundation Instability

If a home has been around long enough, its foundation can begin to deteriorate. This can lead to a multitude of other issues, such as uneven doors and windows, cracks in the drywall, and even chipping of the walls and ceilings.

Because of this, it’s crucial that you repair any damage to the foundation as quickly as possible. Keep in mind that this could be an expensive investment, and you’ll need to hire professionals to ensure the results last.

Electrical Problems

Most old wiring in a home isn’t a threat, but should the home sustain structural damage, it could become a fire hazard. This is why it’s highly recommended that you inspect fuse boxes and outlets before and after you move in, and have them fixed if you notice exposed wires.

Doing so will significantly reduce the risk of fire as well as protect you and your family members from potential shocks.

Septic System Damage

A home’s septic system could also sustain damage over years of continual use. It might be unpleasant to think about, but you should take the time to look for signs your septic tank could need pumped out.

Otherwise, you risk something as severe as septic backup. For this reason, you should have your septic system inspected when you move in and consider getting it maintained every six months.

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Roof or Plumbing Leaks

Leaks are also common problems you must look for in an old home. This is especially the case if you live in an area with harsh cold snaps and winter storms.

Pipes can freeze and burst, and the roofing can gradually chip away under the abuse of heavy storms. As such, be sure to repair these things immediately should you notice them to protect your home from water damage and potential mold.

Image credit: old home common problems by twenty20.com

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