For my generation, those around the age of 30, we are starting to wonder how to invest our hard-earned money. In general advice thinking of buying a home is a great idea, and under the right circumstances, it can be a great investment, because not always purchasing a home is an investment.

Buying a second-hand home could be a way of starting in a safe place, in comparison with hiking a whole new project. It will help you understand what things are important in your own home and what things you’d like to change to adapt to your lifestyle. But what thing should we look for? You can find here a non-exhaustive list of the things that can guide you on what to ask and think when buying homes that are in not so great condition but seem to be a good investment.

1. Don’t be fooled by fresh paint

Fresh paint is the cheapest way of making an old home look new, however, there might be a humidity and mould problem growing beneath this shiny new layer of paint surface, mould will start to grow over it, especially in the most humid places.

A good way of checking if there is a humidity or mould problem is looking into the normally most humid areas of a home, the laundry room, under the bathroom or kitchen sink and paying attention to the old paint. In general, a humidity problem might be caused if the home has been unoccupied for a while and their weather has been highly humid, opening windows or running the AC will solve the problem generally.

A mould problem can be much more complex, especially if the property has had a leak for a while, touching the walls and wood can give you an idea of its condition. Usually mouldy wood feels spongy and dead.

2. Look into the property’s past

Despite an attractive exterior and a well presented and designed interior, consider the reality of the property. Realtors will disclose very important information, and in most cases, they will disclose the financial circumstances of the property, however, it might be worth it looking into the previous ownership and in some states, you can obtain a previous ownership certificate. It will give you an insight into how many owners a house had and for how long these kept the property.

3. Consider the Roof’s Condition

Replacing the roof can be costly, it is an important part of a house, it protects the building against external elements and inclement weather conditions. Roofs come in different shapes, usually according to the region’s architecture and weather’s needs. One of the types of roofs that demands more attention is the flat roof. Flat roof repairs will demand an analysis of the drains in flat areas and if these are working properly or there’s water sitting in the drain system.

Flat roofs and semi-inclined ones on occasions use slate tiles repair to create overall protection of the roof. These can be cheaper to replace as a small area can be repaired instead of needing a big replacement. When walking inside the home inspection the roof and the attic, search for maker marks and signs of leaks. Consider the areas of the roofs that might require more attention, like those closest to where water would sit for a long time, next to the gutters, check the walls next to the gutters.

4. Reduce your Purchasing Budget and Save Some for Repairs

A second-hand home will require some repairs, and after the proper inspections, investing smartly will increase the overall value of the home. Repairs and demodulation could be necessary, a good place to start is the bathrooms and kitchen, these are areas that will allow you to enjoy your home more. If you are considering other areas where to restore and invest smartly, repairing your chimney could be a great idea. Chimney repair is important as it is an area of the building that is both exposed to external conditions and connects your home.

It is a very important safety mechanism that will protect your family from the dangers of trapped smoke, but as well will protect the structural integrity of the house.

After reading these few ideas, ask questions to your real state agent, as it is an important decision, there is no place for hesitation.