Buying an older home can be a good choice for many reasons. The home may hold a quaint, rustic quality that speaks to you, without excessive bells and whistles often seen in modern home design. Or maybe it’s the more affordable asking price that has drawn you in. No matter what your reasons are, buying an older home also comes with challenges due to its age and the building practices when it was built. Let’s go over some of the pros and cons before you make a final decision.
Cons: Be Vigilant About Hazardous Conditions
The building standards of decades ago were certainly different. Materials with harmful substances were commonly used, including those with asbestos and lead. We now know just how harmful exposure to these types of materials is to human health. Here are a few things to look into if you plan on buying an older home:
- Test the paint for lead so that you can negotiate lead paint removal with the seller of the home if necessary.
- If the home was constructed prior to the 1970s, there’s a solid chance that asbestos-containing materials were used. It’s a good idea to have the home assessed for asbestos so that you can get those components safely replaced.
- An older home may not be compliant with modern building codes, which can be costly to fix and pose a major safety issue if ignored.
Now Let’s Look at Some Pros of Buying an Older Home
There are plenty of benefits to buying an older home, and it’s up to you to determine if the pros outweigh the cons. It’s also worth keeping in mind that any issue is fixable, it just depends on your budget and willingness to go forward.
- With an ever-growing population, building homes in town centers and other prime locations is becoming more difficult due to limited space for new real estate. If you’re looking for a centrally located home, you are more likely to find one that is older.
- Older homes are desirable because they’re a part of local history. If you choose to invest in an older home, you may be able to benefit from its historical value.
- Often, older homes are located in historic districts that are walkable to a town or city. This is a plus for property value, plus you’ll find that these neighborhoods often have a charm that you won’t find in newer communities.
If you’re thinking about buying an older home, keep these considerations in mind. Above all else, learn as much as possible about the property so that you’re not blindsided by unexpected issues.