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Guide to Buying a House: What Do Experts Advise When Viewing a Property

Updated on July 10, 2017
A family viewing a house for sale.
A family viewing a house for sale.

Buying a house, for some, can be viewed as the next step to a new chapter in one’s life. Others see it as a sign of independence and convenience. However there are some who merely buy the house based on price without considering a lot of factors.

In fact, most people spend at least 96 minutes viewing properties. That’s less than the average time a person spends on selecting a holiday destination. Within that time, buyers have the potential to miss out on so many crucial details like feasibility, accessibility, long term and importantly, practicality.

Here are a few tips and tricks experts suggest when it comes to buying properties.

Think of practicality.

The number one thing to consider is practicality and budget. Most people have their definition of a dream house in their minds. But sometimes, dream houses can be rather pricey and often times, impractical and does not adhere to factors to be considered when buying a house. Even if most listings have all the necessary amenities and allotted factors, there will always be that unnerving feeling of ‘it doesn’t feel right’.

In addition, being emotionally attached to a property no matter how expensive and perfect it may be, will hinder your better judgement. Especially if said property has a few issues such as structural and maintenance issues, they could be quite risky both financially and physically.

It is best to consider practical and lifesaving options when buying a house or property. It’s also best to have a second opinion from experts such as architects and building inspectors. Their opinions can prove to be vital in your decision to purchase the property such as price negotiation.

Be thorough in the process.

This is, without a doubt, the most expensive purchase you will ever make in your life. It is absolutely vital to have a business-like approach in your dealings.

Like a good shopper, visit the property on multiple occasions and on different times of the day. Inspect the rooms thoroughly and check every nook and corner for any small detail as you possibly can. Don’t be afraid of opening doors and cabinets. As a buyer you are entitled to see what exactly you will spend your money on.

Check for grips on the stair handles and stair treads, plumbing and most importantly, the overall property and what it includes. Check also for technological and travel amenities. Find out if the area has a good phone and internet signal. Check if the roads surrounding the property can be accessed at specific times.

How about the house roofing? Conduct a brief check-up on the roofing system. Is it in good condition? Will you need to replace the roofs or repaint them? Do you need fixing on a damage roof in Ann Arbor, Michigan property?

At the same time, take down notes. That way, you will be equipped with the knowledge and details to make an informed decision, rather than a hasty decision based on your predetermined preference. You will also eliminate the worry that there might be something wrong that you missed. Finding out relevant information is a good way to help decide whether you will be most happy living in the area.

Conduct a comprehensive research.

In connection with being thorough, do research. Find out about the neighborhood. Think about the amenities such as laundromats, shopping marts and offices as well as the proximity to school and work.

Also, think about how the location will affect the lifestyle you and your family have and whether they will enjoy it or find it too remote, too lively, etc. Consider also long term. If you or your parents grow old, will the location be perfect for all parties? It is often best to have a checklist when you do so.

Nowadays, there are mobile apps that can help you with the research and decision making. A good example is the app named House Inspector. This is like your personal, if not portable, house inspector. With pre-set questions and checklists for doing property research and analysis, this app allows you to save photos and make notes during your house viewing. IT asks questions like “is the roof on the property made of tiles or slate?” It then tallies the score and with the comparison, you will have another opinion on which property to buy.


And the number one tip for property buying is to have an open mind and enjoy it. Buying a property is one of life’s best rewards.


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    • shanmarie profile image

      shanmarie 22 months ago

      I didn't know people spend more time planning a vacation destination than buying a home. But I suppose it's not surprising, considering many agents do not necessarily focus on practicality of the client needs but on their pocket instead.

    • Evane profile image

      Ave 22 months ago from Philippines

      @chick writer: Thank you. Do you have a new tip to add? :)

    • chick writer profile image

      chick writer 22 months ago

      Nice article, useful info!