6 Real Estate Red Flags to Watch Out for When Looking for a Home

Are you looking for a new house? Everything you hear is not the way it sounds. One of the greatest decisions you can make is buying a new home. Because of that, you need to be keen to detail throughout the buying process. Most people ask questions like how many bathrooms and bedrooms the house has and whether the kitchen is big enough because they want to feel if the house will meet their needs and many questions to ask your realtor when buying a house. They walk with a notebook and a pen trying to tick their list of requirements.

However, you should note that the house you are looking for has to exceed the list of needs. You need a home that is in good shape. The average listing contract features a disclosure section where the vendor is expected to note down any known flaw of the property. Platforms such as Movoto.com offer you a head-start when it comes to looking for a home.

This vendor may not know all the flaws and some even may not list some flaws also though they are aware of them believing you won’t realize. To ensure you don’t enter a house only to spend a fortune on repairs beware of the red flags this guide shows.

1. Structural/Foundation Issues

Correcting¬†structural or foundational issues is very costly. The most important section of a house is its foundation, and many people don’t know that. Buying a home that has foundational issues can cost you enough cash to buy another home. That is how serious it is.

When you visit different homes, be keen on the foundation. Look for cracks if the basement of the house isn’t finished yet. Minor cracks are common, and this shouldn’t raise your eyebrows. However, significant cracks are a sign of a problematic structure.

In case the house is finished, and you can’t tell whether the foundation is problematic or not by looking at it, keenly observe the door frames. Most of the time, they are not square and won’t close quickly.

If you can, hire a structural engineer to inspect the entire house. This is the best way to tell if there are structural or foundational issues.

2. Extremely Low Price

While offers do exist even in the real estate industry, low prices are a red flag. Think about it. Also, even if someone is giving you a discounted price, they still want to make a profit out of selling their property. That means if the vendor is selling the house at a low cost, they likely want to do away with it because it is costly to repair it. Although some people may sell homes at a low price to take care of medical bills, or relocation, it is also probable that the house is in a bad state.

3. Short Term Stay

Luckily online property marketplaces provide you with information on the history of a property. If the seller of the house has online lived there for one year, then you need to ask them why the short tenure. After all, who would buy a home only to move in a few months? If you realize many people have owned the same property in the past, there is something wrong with the house.

4. Saggy Ceiling

It doesn’t matter how cozy the home appears; if you notice a sagging ceiling, it’s a red flag. Even when there is only a slight sagging, it could have been caused by a leaking roof, insect infestation, or structural movement. Any of these causes are expensive to fix.

5. Odors

You don’t want to move to a home where you smell bad odors from all corners. Pleasant scents are also a red flag. Usually, a buyer will run away from a property that has a bad smell. But why pleasant odors too?

If you can see air fresheners in every corner, sweet-scented candles lit everywhere, and fresheners hanging on walls, the seller may be hiding a bad smell. Although this isn’t the case always, you need to be aware. If it’s during winter and all the windows of the house are open, there may be foul odors.

6. Many Homes for Sale in the Neighborhood

Is the house you are selling located on the street with many homes for sale? A mass exodus from the same location is a major red flag. People do not just decide to leave, and that tells you there is a problem. Make sure you ask your realtor why there are many homes for sale on that street because most likely you will also exit after a short while if you decide to buy a house there.


Thinking of buying a home? There are numerous red flags you have to watch out for, and some have been discussed. Avoiding rush decisions and taking the time to choose a home is the best way to buy your perfect home.

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