3 Hidden Problems You’re Likely to Inherit When Buying a House
And what it will cost you.
Updated Nov 22, 2022 9:18 AM
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Hot outlets, low water pressure, missing shingles—nearly three in four people who have sold a home admit to hiding a problem from a buyer. According to a report from Home Advisor that surveyed 2,000 Americans to learn about what home misshaps they faced and how much it cost to fix them, their pretending not to notice, say, a leaky roof, can mean bad things for your wallet. In fact, on average, new homeowners spend more than $7,000 to fix mistakes made by previous owners that they were unaware of in the first year alone.
Of all the less noticeable (but time-consuming) repairs you’ll inherit, electrical issues are the most likely. Forty percent of those polled said they encountered such problems (think: faulty attic fans and ungrounded plugs). Drainage and roofing were close behind at 39 percent and 37 percent, respectively. And when it comes to rooms in the house that end up needing the most work because of failed DIYs, the bathroom takes the cake, followed by the kitchen. These types of problems are bad enough that a third of respondents said they wouldn’t have bought their house had they known what was really going on.
Want to avoid buyer’s remorse? Consider putting yourself on financial lockdown for at least six months before purchasing a home. When the time comes to house hunt, avoid considering homes that are outside your budget and account for structural and cosmetic changes—even if you don’t have plans for a renovation. If you end up needing to make some upgrades, look to services like Home Advisor, Sweeten, and Matriarchy Build that’ll quickly connect you with a contractor.