There has recently been a lot of buzz about virtual viewings and whether they will become the standard. Although a live or pre-recorded tour can help you narrow down the properties you’re interested in purchasing, letting agents in Knightsbridge opine nothing beats a personal visit to iron out any potential flaws. Here is a handy guide that will help you through the process.
1. Is there any dampness?
Keep an eye out for symptoms of wetness when viewing a house. If you are looking for properties to rent in Knightsbridge keep in mind to check for mouldy odour, flaking plaster, and watermarked walls or ceilings which are all telltale indicators of wetness. It may seem obvious, but pay particular attention near the ceiling and along the skirting boards. Another indicator is if the room has recently been repainted, which could conceal any wetness.
2. Is the structure of the building sound?
You’re searching for large cracks, but you can also expect some hairline cracks. Look in particular at the intersections of additions, end-of-terrace walls, and bay windows, which can all begin to fall or bend away from the rest of the home. You’re searching for issues now that you can bring up with the homeowner or estate agent and then have your surveyor look into them later. However, you can only search for what you’re familiar with; a chartered surveyor with years of expertise is educated to recognise dangers and know what has to be addressed.
3. How much room is available for storage?
When looking at potential homes to buy, storage space is a critical but sometimes ignored commodity. Where will you store your vacuum cleaner, towels, extra linens, and rubbish boxes? Is there enough area for built-in cupboards or shelves? Storage space might be limited, especially in recently constructed homes.
4. Which direction does the house face?
It’s difficult to see the difference between north and south facing houses or gardens in the winter, on a cloudy day or at night, but in the summer, it can mean the difference between a home that’s full of light and warmth and one that’s frustratingly dark. Don’t be afraid to bring a compass to the property viewing; you may already have one on your phone. With bi-fold doors being so popular, keep in mind that in bright sunlight, the solar gain can make the space extremely hot, so try to visit and spend some time in that room while the sun is shining.
5. Are the rooms adequate for your requirements?
New home builders have been accused of placing smaller furnishings in rooms to make them appear larger. Will your present furniture fit, assuming you won’t be buying all new furniture as soon as you move in?
6. Have you been duped by staged photos?
Sellers employ cleverly placed mirrors, strategic lighting, delectable scents, cosy fires, and fresh coats of paint to make their home more desirable. It’s good to feel like you can walk in and start working right away, but try to keep your cool. Take photos and inquire about what they are leaving behind if their furnishings make the room. Perfect light fixtures, for example, can be difficult to locate and replace.
7. Is the paint on the window frames cracked? Is the double-glazing in good condition?
The state of the external window frames is one of the things to look for when buying a house. This is a good indicator of the house’s condition; if individuals have invested in and cared for those, they are likely to have done the same for the remainder. It’s usually rotting if you can easily put your finger into the wooden window frame. Condensation between double-glazed window panes indicates that the windows are broken. New windows must be fitted by a registered recognised inspector, so obtain a FENSA or similar certificate, which generally includes a warranty.
8. What is the age of the roof?
Roof replacement is costly, and contemporary roofs have a lifespan of only 15-20 years, depending on the materials used. Also, if the house has a flat or almost flat roof, inspect the substance used to seal it. Nowadays, an extra layer is given which is preferable to asphalt and gravel, which might leave unsealed seams and edges.
There has recently been a lot of buzz about virtual viewings and whether they will become the standard. Although a live or pre-recorded tour can help you narrow down the properties you’re interested in purchasing, nothing beats a personal visit to iron out any potential flaws.