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How to Check Out A Home Under Contract BEFORE Hiring An Expensive Inspector

Few things are more disappointing in Real Estate than having an offer accepted on your dream home only to spend hundreds of dollars on an inspection only to find out that there are major defects that you could have easily spotted yourself. This guide will provide you with significant issues that you can assess yourself and know that this dream home might actually be a nightmare in disguise. In Louisiana, during your due diligence period you can cancel the deal for any reason at this point and finding a major defect yourself would be a very good reason to cancel your deal. This guide is just a nifty way to help save you time, money and ultimately the disappointment of losing that dream home that you just believed you had finally locked in.

Purchasing a home is a significant investment, and it is crucial to ensure that you are making an informed decision. One important aspect of this process is evaluating the property for any potential damage. This blog post aims to provide you with a comprehensive guide on how to assess homes for property damage effectively. By performing a thorough evaluation, you can avoid unexpected expenses in the long run and make an informed decision.

1. Exterior Inspection:

Begin by examining the home's exterior, focusing on the following areas:

- Roof: Look for missing or damaged shingles, signs of leaks, and any sagging or uneven areas.

- Gutters and Downspouts: Ensure they are securely attached and free from blockages or damage.

- Foundation: Inspect for cracks, water damage, or signs of shifting.

- Siding and Paint: Check for peeling, blistering, or chipping, which could indicate underlying issues.

2. Interior Inspection:

Moving inside the house, pay attention to the following areas:

- Walls and Ceilings: Inspect for cracks, water stains, or bulges that may indicate water damage or structural issues.

- Windows and Doors: Check for proper sealing, functioning, and any signs of water leakage.

- Flooring: Look for any loose tiles, uneven surfaces, or signs of water damage.

- Plumbing: Examine faucets, pipes, and water heaters for leaks, rust, or corrosion.

3. Electrical and HVAC Systems:

These systems are crucial for a functional home, so it is important to assess them thoroughly:

- Electrical Wiring: Inspect for frayed wires, outdated systems, or faulty outlets.

- Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning: Test the systems to ensure they are working efficiently and inspect for any signs of damage or lack of maintenance.

4. Basement and Attic:

Often overlooked, these areas can reveal essential clues about a home's condition:

- Basements: Check for signs of water damage, dampness, mold, or mildew.

- Attics: Look for signs of leaks, insulation issues, or pest infestation.

5. Professional Inspections:

While conducting a DIY evaluation is helpful, Southern Dreams Team recommends that you always hire a home inspector when purchasing a home for a more detailed, professional inspection after you've done your personal walk through with this guide. They can detect hidden issues such as structural damage, termite infestations, or faulty wiring that might not be apparent to an untrained eye.


Assessing a home for property damage is an essential step in the home buying process. By thoroughly examining the exterior and interior, electrical and HVAC systems, basement, and attic, you can identify any potential issues before making a final decision. Remember, always consult professionals for a comprehensive inspection to ensure you are making a confident and informed investment. Investing time and effort into evaluating a property for damages can save you from unexpected repair costs and provide peace of mind for years to come.

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