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What are some red flags when buying a home?

Buying a home is one of the biggest events in your life and possibly the biggest investment you and your family will make. Whether you are considering the purchase of a Louisiana home as your primary residence or a vacation home, you can save yourself a lot of heartache, not to mention costly repairs, by thoroughly inspecting any home before you commit to buying it.

Louisiana has some of the most beautiful homes and properties to be found anywhere in the country. However, Louisiana also is known for its summer heat, year-round high humidity and annual hurricane season. As Better Homes and Gardens explains, looking for potential red flags in any home is well worth your time and effort.

Exterior red flags

A home's roof is one of its most important elements. If you notice missing or damaged shingles, this could indicate that water may be seeping into the attic and damaging interior walls every time it rains. Likewise, if you notice any damage to the home's siding, this could mean that the home has unrepaired or improperly repaired damage from a storm, particularly a hurricane.

Damaged driveways, patios and/or decks should alert you to potential expensive repairs. Missing or damaged railings also are red flags, as is any sign of rotted wood. Improper drainage is a major concern. Check to see that all ground slopes away from the home's exterior to prevent water draining into its basement, crawl space, garage, etc.

Interior red flags

Given Louisiana's hot summers, make sure that the home's attic is properly ventilated. If not, interior heat and moisture cannot escape properly and you could face expensive repairs and/or remodeling. Since air conditioning is a necessity, make sure the home's HVAC system is up to date and working properly, particularly in an older home.

You should check to see that all electrical and plumbing systems are both safe and efficient and that all appliances are in proper working order. If it is an older home, carefully look for any signs of interior water damage or mold, plus the number and location of working fire and carbon monoxide alarms.

Bottom line, you should have the home inspected by a professional home inspector before committing to buy it. This is general information only and is not intended to provide legal advice.

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Main Office: 501 Broad Street Lake Charles, LA 70601 | Phone: 337-439-0707

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