An older home may be a great option to consider if you enjoy living spaces with charm and character. While an older property may be well-maintained, it’s essential to know about potential problems due to the age of the home. Before you commit, here are a few common concerns in older homes.
Foundation Problems are Concerns in Older Homes
The foundation is one of the essential parts of any home, whether the property is five or 50 years old. Some of the most common foundation issues arise for various reasons, including the house naturally settling over time, poor gutter maintenance leading to water pooling around the foundation, and tree roots causing damage to the structure. Foundation concerns in older homes will be caught by your home inspector, though you may notice some signs on your own, including:
- uneven floors
- doors and windows that don’t close or latch properly
- visible cracks on the inside or outside of the foundation
Foundation repair varies a great deal in cost depending on the severity of the damage and how long it has continued unabated.
Outdated Building Materials
Building materials and standards change over time. You may find asbestos and lead-based paint in properties built over 40 years ago. While newer construction homes no longer include these dangerous materials, lead and asbestos are major concerns in older homes.
The most significant indicator of potential hazards is the year the house was built. Homes constructed before 1978 are more likely to contain lead and asbestos, and remediation may be necessary to make the property safe for your family.
Roofing Issues are Concerns in Older Homes
The average asphalt shingle roof has a life expectancy of around 20-30 years, depending on weather, climate, and maintenance. One of the biggest concerns in an older property is the roof’s condition. If the original materials are still in place, the buyer will soon have to foot the bill for a roof replacement and any repairs caused by a failing roof.
Before purchasing an older home, hire a home inspector to assess the property. They will estimate the roof’s age and give you an idea of how many more years it will protect your home.
Newly built homes are more energy-efficient than homes constructed a few decades ago. Older homes may need new weatherstripping, additional insulation in the walls and attic, and even new windows and doors. Depending on the required updates, these can be costly projects that could cause a potential buyer to pass on the house.
If you’re concerned about efficiency, order an energy audit to pinpoint weaknesses and make improvements to reduce your heating and cooling bills.