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Ten Most Common Defects When Purchasing a Home
“Get the Bear facts.”

Before purchasing a home, it’s important to have an inspection done to detect some of the most common home defects. Many of the more common issues can be fixed without “breaking the bank,” but it’s critical that you know of them before buying the property. Here are some of the most prevalent, as well as solutions for fixing them.

Poor Drainage/Foundation and Basement Water Damage

Inspectors frequently find homes with wet basements. Moisture can cause damage to a home’s foundation and structure. If poor drainage is found or there has been damage to the basement or foundation, it can often be corrected by simply regarding the ground outside the foundation wall or adding on a roof drainage system to the home. However, in some instances, further remedies such as a major re-landscaping or ripping out and replacing the damage done by the moisture may be the only solution. Most often the cost of the repairs caused by poor drainage range between $1500 and $7,500, depending upon the extent of the damage.

When you are buying a new home, drainage and flooding issues can be temporarily corrected so to sell the house, finding out later can be very, very costly, and it can cause other problems such as mold and mildew.


The photo above is showing you some tips on proper drainage and planting, some of what an inspector will look at. These grading and planting tips could easily be look over by you and adverse conditions see as OK.It is important for you to know of a problem before purchasing and home, or if you have a present issue with water drainage, flooding you should have an expert evaluate the problem for a solution.


Drainage repairs can be very, very expensive, hinder drainage defects can also cause other problems, such as mold.

Bad Electrical System

Many older homes have electrical systems which are out-of-date or not up to the current codes. Many such common problems include ungrounded outlets, aluminum wiring, or lack of GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters). These are all common yet potentially very hazardous and need to be fixed when purchasing a home. The average costs of repairing a faulty electrical system, depending upon the extent, range from approximately $1000 to $6,000.


The biggest concern with electrical defects is that many of them are hidden, in a closed wall, an electric panel or an outlet box.


Electrical defects not only can cost a lot to repair, but there are other concerns to be more concerned with, such as your families well being!

Roof Damage

Again, in many older homes, you may find damage to the roof due to lack of maintenance or improper installation. This very common problem may call for repairs as opposed to an entire roof replacement. If the roofing shingles are old, however, you will want to have them replaced. The cost to replace the shingles can be between $5,000 and $15,000, depending upon the quality of materials, the size of the affected area and the roofing company you choose.


The first photo is showing shingle cracks, they can be cause from, improper installation of the shingles, improper installation of the roof decking or bad/improper ventilation. The second (chalk circles) and third photo depicts damage to the shingles from hail, over time these dents will deteriorate and shorten the life of the roof considerably, and allow water to penetrate the roof covering allowing mold growth in your attic.


Proper installation and design are also very important to the resilience and longevity of your roof covering. Proper ventilation will extend the life of your roof and help to prevent mold growth in your attic.

Faulty Heating Systems

With older homes, faulty heating systems are common. This problem can become a very serious safety and health issue if not addressed. While it’s a major expense and one that can run between $2,000 and $5,000 for an average home, depending upon whether you’re repairing the old system or replacing, the benefits will outweigh the cost.


Poor maintenance could reduce the efficiency and life of your heating system. Also it could be producing dangerous Carbon Monoxide gas in small amounts and go unknown, as time passes the problem would get worse.

Termite Damage and Dry Rot

If termite damage or dry rot is discover, you’ll want to make sure they’re taken care of immediately. If left alone, it will only cause further damage. The cost to repair damage can be as much as $10,000, depending upon the amount of damage and where it is located.


Insect infestation is one form of wood damage, also a culprit is mold which causes dry rot as you see in the second photo.

Plumbing Problems

Plumbing problems are often common in older homes and they must be taken care of to make sure more damage takes place. It may involve simple leak or as much as replacing the full plumbing. The cost of fixing such plumbing issues can be as much as $5,000 to $10,000, certainly if opening up walls, ceilings and floors is needed to access the plumbing.
When purchasing a home, it’s very important to place inspection contingencies on your offer to purchase. This will protect you should you find any these common defects. If a defect is found, you’ll have options to have the seller repair the problems or allow for money to be taken off the price due to the defect. The key point is that many common defects and damage can be repaired at an affordable cost.

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