Inspection checklist #2 for home buyers

Inspection checklist #2 for first home buyers

by Chris Lang on March 22, 2009

If a house has passed your first inspection and created a good (or at least neutral) first impression, it could mean that after a while you will short-list it as one of the final candidates, or even “the one”. And because buying a house is such a huge decision, you will need to inspect it again.

The purpose of the second inspection is to notice all the major advantages and disadvantages of the property, including things that will inevitably cost you money to add, fix or replace. There is a difference between “want to fix” and “must fix”. For example, if you’re buying a house with an old rotting fence and it falls over, you will have to replace it, so this is a “must fix” situation. On the other hand, if you’ve bought a house with an old dishwasher that you don’t like, you might want to replace it, but while it works you don’t have to.

When calculating a price you will offer on a house, you should consider all the things, replacement / addition of which will cost you money immediately after you move, because that literally means that the house costs you that much more.

There are things you can’t see or feel (like the size of the land) and will have to ask the vendor or the estate agent – don’t be afraid to disturb them, call and ask because you need to find out.

The things you need to pay attention to include:

General information about the house and the land

  • Land Size
  • Land Shape
  • Ceiling height
  • Type of hot water system installed
  • Is there a rain water tank or a watering system
  • House-related

  • The condition of the inner and the outer walls, whether they insulated or not
  • Gutters – new/old, in good/poor condition
  • Roof

  • What kind of tiles (terracotta/concrete/metal), insulated or not
  • Condition – good/poor
  • Heating/Cooling

  • Whether installed, what kind(ducted/gas heating, evaporative cooling/air conditioning), in what rooms
  • Windows

  • The condition of window glass and frames, of the fly mesh and the curtains
  • Doors

  • The condition of the doors and door frames, wire doors and fly mesh
  • Floors

  • The type of floor coverings (boards, carpets, laminate) and the condition – good/poor
  • Bathrooms

  • The condition of taps, bath tubs, sinks, shower screens, toilet bowls
  • Kitchen

  • What kind of appliances are there (and are being sold with the house), what sort of the benchtop is there
  • Outside

  • The condition of fences and retaining walls – good/poor

I’ve created a simple checklist that you can print and take to inspection #2. It helped me a lot to inspect houses and remember all the important details. Enter your name and email in the boxes below and I will send it to you.

Happy house hunting!

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Chino Hills Homes October 5, 2009 at 6:34 am

Great blog I’m not familiar with Australian real estate market.


Julien Ugon November 27, 2009 at 2:51 pm

Can you please send me the checklist n.1 and 2? Thank you for this very useful article.


Chris November 27, 2009 at 6:19 pm

Hi Julien, if you just sign up (enter your name and email in the two boxes in the above article) both check-lists will be sent to you. Thanks for the comment!


Eusebio Leise September 22, 2011 at 7:17 am

Fantastic blog. Plenty of helpful information here. I was looking for this.Thanks for sharing!


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