House hunting is both exciting and frustrating. When you arrive at a home to view it for the first time, it's easy to get overwhelmed and wrapped up in your emotions -- but it's important to stay focused and not to allow your emotions to cloud your judgement. To ensure you make a wise decision, here are four tips to follow when viewing a house you're considering purchasing.
Start in the basement.
When viewing any home, always start in the basement and work your way up the floors. Most big problems -- like foundational issues and dampness -- are recognized in the basement. By starting here, you can detect problems like this and potentially rule the home out before you give yourself a chance to fall in love with a pretty living room or spacious master bedroom upstairs. Only proceed to viewing the upper floors if the basement is to your satisfaction.
Walk through twice.
When you're walking through a home for the first time, it's easy to miss things. For instance, you might be focused on the woodwork along the ceiling and forget to look down to notice the cracks in a wall. You'll miss fewer things, in all, if you walk through the entire home twice. When you reach the top floor, go back down to the basement and walk through the place again. To take this to the next level during this second walk-through, challenge yourself to note at least one thing in each room that you didn't see the first time.
Bring a friend or family member with you.
While you don't want to bring a whole crowd to a viewing, it's helpful to bring along one companion. This will give you someone to bounce your thoughts off of as you consider the house. This person can also serve as your voice of reason if you start getting overly emotional and drawn into a home that's really not what you want.
Ask the realtor a lot of questions.
You can't see everything there is to know about a house. For example, your vision won't tell you exactly how old the furnace is or why there's a crack in the upstairs bedroom wall. To find out more details, make sure you ask the realtor a lot of questions during the walk-through. You can either ask them as you go, or write them down on paper and then ask them all at the end.
Viewing a home for the first time can be a bit of a whirlwind, but with the tips above, you'll take in all of the information you need to make a wise decision as to whether or not this is the home for you.