9 Things to Ignore When House Hunting

Looking for a new home can be a challenge, especially when you walk into someone's for-sale home and 20 years of their lives are on display and you have to really use your imagination to determine how you can that particular home 'yours.' Many people choose to remodel and stage their homes prior to having their agent listing on Trulia, but then there are the vast majority of people who choose to sell their beloved home “as-is.”

While a turnkey home is ideal for people who want to move right in and make no changes, there are those "time warp" homes that are actually incredible gems that just need a little polishing.

As you step into each home on your house hunt, here are 9 things about a for-sale home that you should "ignore" as you search for your dream home:

An "Older" Home

Old isn't always synonymous with bad. Some homes built decades ago have stood the test of time because they were built with solid, quality materials and have a classic style. Don't always assume that new = nicer, either. Some newer homes are "affordable" because they were built cheaply. Remember that there are many simple fixes for dated homes, and the plus side of an older home is charm and character you can't find in a brand new build.

Paint Colors

Ignore the existing paint choices and focus on the structure of the room, the placement of the windows, etc. Paint is an incredibly easy and a cheap fix in a home and something you can change in just a couple hours.

Wallpaper With Roosters And Chickens

While it may look like you are walking into a barnyard, remember that wallpaper is easily replaced or covered over. So no matter how designed challenged the walls seem to look – it's an easy fix.

Kitchen Appliances And Accessories

The kitchen is the heart of the home and often, the appliances aren't going to live up to your dreams. As long as you have room in your budget, or a timeline to replace the existing appliances, a seller's yellow fridge shouldn't be a deal breaker.

Ugly Carpet

Flooring options are getting more and more diverse and there are now so many low-cost options that look exactly like their higher-priced counterparts. Don't walk away from a great house just because you're not a fan of what you'd be walking on.

Funky Smells

Except for a serious mold problem, there's nothing a deep cleaning can't fix. Plug your nose and focus on the home's bones and the potential it has when you give it your own touch.

Curb Appeal

If you're not saying "wow" when you first drive up, that's ok. Close your eyes and envision a different colored front door and some new landscaping, and presto – it might just be your dream home!

Popcorn Ceilings

It's great at the movies, but not at home.  No worries! A ceiling specialist can come in and have it all that scrapped off.  Just make sure you have it done before you move in – it is a messy job.

No Privacy

If the house feels too exposed and lacks privacy from next door – you can fix that.  Remember "hedges make great neighbors"

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  • Report this Comment On April 07, 2014, at 2:40 AM, RandomWoman wrote:

    Another bit of advice: don't judge a house by it's online pictures. They're often unflattering or don't truly show off the best attributes of a home.

    I recently bought a house that had been on the MLS for 6 months. I had seen it several times in the 3 months I was house hunting but the pictures were underwhelming so I never had my agent arrange a viewing. I finally said "we'll be in the neighborhood anyways, let's check it out." I walked in the door and fell in love. It was so much warmer and inviting IRL than in the bleached out pictures taken with too much flash. And the backyard was jaw dropping. Only a panoramic camera or video clip could have adequately imaged it.

  • Report this Comment On April 07, 2014, at 12:04 PM, jaay wrote:

    PLEASE do NOT buy a home with popcorn ceilings, what's under the "popcorn" is asbestos, once it scraped or removed it floculates into the air, they tell you it can

    be removed, it will always be there DON'T BELIEVE THEM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Report this Comment On April 07, 2014, at 11:07 PM, ellen76 wrote:

    Popcorn ceilings may or may not contain asbestos. If any of the ceiling appears sparkly, it's a good bet that asbestos is present. Otherwise, chances are it's not. Only a lab test can tell you for sure, and it's inexpensive and can be included in the contract as a contingency.

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