Monday, February 20, 2012

WOW Did the SELLER ever get the best deal...

The lack of homes for sale continues into the 2012 spring real estate market in Toronto. Older homes do present a challenge when you want the property but may be forced by competition to waive your Home Inspection Condition.

My personal advice is to endure a few sales and bidding cycles; have a home inspector standing by who can assist in a walk through. With any older home they can only report on what can be seen. They are not permitted to open any walls or drill any holes. That is why thermal imaging is so vital.

A simple 20-item home inspection checklist for buyers. The home inspection system is far from perfect, but it is the best way to safeguard your interest.

Related: 20 things to look for in a home inspection

Inspections are imperfect because in most cases the inspector is not permitted to look behind walls or under floors which means many potential problems are hidden. But Andrew Radomski of Pillar to Post, a professional home inspection company, tells me that inspection firms can identify plenty of potential trouble spots. These include:

Obsolete knob and tube wiring. This is found in homes built prior to the 1950s in most of the original City of Toronto. It is hard to get insurance if your home has knob and tube wiring.

A 60-amp electrical service when the norm today is either 100 or 200. Again this will lead to higher insurance premiums.

Old galvanized plumbing. It rusts, can leak and plug up, slowing water flow. Old lead pipes are a health risk. Any roof over 20 years old should probably be partially or completely replaced.

Old foundations will gradually deteriorate, causing leaks, and are expensive to repair.

Windows can be expensive to replace, if in poor condition.

Some firms use thermal imaging technology and, for an additional fee, can identify problems with the structure, moisture leakage or air leakage in a home. They can also better identify when there is insufficient insulation, plumbing leaks or poor construction, which can lead to problems down the road.

Mark Weisleder is a real estate lawyer.

Have professional full time people in your corner....
Don't be rushed into a decision, Another house will come along.

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