With the housing market taking a turn, inevitably we will see more families opting into rentals. Without the opportunity to properly assess a property via testing & inspections-you’re relying on visual inspections, questioning & instinct.
Having a gameplan for what to look for beforehand is key. If not, emotions and excitement can get the best of you and then you’re locked into a house that may not be best for your health.
➡Make a checklist of your non-negotiables. If there are some issues that aren’t deal breakers—have a budget and plan to mitigate the situation. Maybe its saying no to an older build (higher risk of water damage), a recent flip (what was covered up?), carpeting (allergies), near a highway (environmental pollution) or golf course (pesticide runoff), transmission power lines (EMFs), not-so-great neighborhood (energy of a space is so important). We all have unique situations.
➡When you’re touring the house and see something questionable, ask the agent or owner about it. Disclosure is a golden rule in real estate. Don’t be afraid to ask about past water damage!
➡Visual assessment of the interior – Bubbled wood, musty smells, water stains, peeling paint, water pooling around the exterior, showers not sloped/draining properly, water stains near the base of the toilet, mold in the toilet bowl or tank (possible sign of high mold spores in the air).
➡Exterior – Does the roof look to be in good shape? Are there gutters and overhangs? Is it a downward sloping property or at the bottom of a hill? Any standing water pooling around the exterior?
➡ Is there a crawlspace or basement? If there is a crawlspace, take note that as much as 50% of the air you breathe on the first floor comes up from your crawl space. Has it been properly sealed & encapsulated, any standing water or musty odors coming from it?
➡Most importantly-Pay attention to how you feel in it. My personal experience is that my body (not my head or heart) is the best judge. If something feels off, trust it!
No house is perfect. There will be compromises for every home. And that’s OK. Have a game plan (and budget) for optimizing its health to work best for you and your family.