Home buying jitters or common sense?
May 7, 2012 11:57 AM Subscribe
What are the structural components of a solid house, that a layperson could determine?
posted by A Terrible Llama to home & garden (16 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
The house we're buying, or may buy, is lovely but I'm a little concerned about a couple of things the contractor and I talked about when we did a walk through for some estimates. One*, the "overhang" on the outside shingles is 7" when the standard is 4" -- he thought that indicated they were trying to stretch the original building materials. Two, the staircase banister is really wobbly. We'll fix it, but is a staircase banister something that should get to that point or is it a sign it was poorly built? Three, the kitchen seems to have been designed by a dingbat. We can fix it, and we can work with it, but I want to know that these things are not a symptom of the house actually having been built out of Crayola crayons and gum and bad ideas.
Inspectors in my state aren't allowed to tell you much, or won't tell you much, because of liability. We have a good, solid, well-recommended inspector, but I feel like he's looking for whether the septic system is up to code and I want to feel like the house is solidly built. I want to know what I should be looking for that might not come up in inspection.
The house in question is twenty-five years old.
*I'm probably screwing up the details but you get the idea.