Looking for a new home can be an exciting process, but it is also a major decision and should be approached carefully and cautiously. Water damage in a home can cause both health risks and safety risks, so it is important to know the signs of water damage before you start looking at properties. Some signs of water damage are pretty obvious, but some problems can be overlooked.
Here are some of the signs of water damage you should keep in mind:
- Outside the home: Look around the home for problems like standing water or puddles in the yard or issues where the land slopes towards the home instead of away from it. This is especially important in homes that have basements or even crawlspaces, as excess moisture can lead to mold overgrowth in a short amount of time. Examine the exterior paint of the home as well for signs of deterioration.
- Inside the home: Many water stains are easy to spot. These yellowish rings are common on walls and ceilings, but can also appear on floors. Be on the lookout for bubbled-up or peeling paint and swollen drywall, as these might indicate hidden problems and water damage. Check wooden fixtures and furniture for water damage and listen for sounds of leaks and loose caulking around plumbing in bathrooms and other areas.
- Above the home: The roof is very important to protect the home from water. Dents, missing shingles or broken shingles are all red flags that water damage may be present in the property. Make sure the attic is well-maintained.
- Under the home: Much of the air in a house comes from the crawlspace, so it is essential that this is a healthy space. Excess moisture can lead to humidity problems and mold. Foul odors are a common indication of problems in this area.
While it is always good to be on the lookout for signs of water damage, it is critical that you have a thorough and professional home inspection completed prior to buying any home.