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5 Things to Look for When Viewing Real Estate

Featured photo by Sheila Scarborough

When you first begin looking for a new home, you’re likely daydreaming of the patio, picking paint colors and imagining a new, spacious closet. While it’s fun to think about these ideas, you should also have a few key practical features in mind to make the most out of real estate listing tours. Check into these 5 things when viewing potential new homes.

Look Into These 5 Things While Touring Real Estate Listings

Structural Issues

While walking through a home, ask the real estate agent about the structure of the building. Ask when the roof was installed, if the foundation has ever had any issues and if the house has ever flooded. This information will provide insight into whether the property has structural problems like a shifted foundation or major leaks that may need addressing in the near future. It’s also wise to have a home inspector assess a property before putting in an offer. These professionals will look for problems that you may not notice like wiring that doesn’t work or dampness in the crawlspace and can offer recommendations on how to make repairs and updates.

History of Mold

Houses that have had mold issues in the past are at a higher risk of incurring mold problems in the future. It’s a good idea to talk with the agent or homeowner about whether the home has a history of mold to learn whether the house may need some work to improve the interior air quality. Typically, this will mean tackling tasks like cleaning HVAC ducts or replacing the current system with one that offers better ventilation. You may also need to bring in a plumber to address leaks or a roofer to seal up the home to better prevent moisture damage.

Utility Costs

Many people will want to ask homeowners about the current cost of utilities. Additionally, some people even ask about what internet provider is best in the area and whether there are options for electricity companies. All of this info will give you get an idea of monthly costs for the home so you can assess more long-term costs along with the upfront price.


While attending an open house or a private showing, don’t just look at the exterior of the appliances and move on. Open the fridge, microwave, dishwasher and oven to assess the interior. Ask the agent when the appliances were installed and if the current owner is on a maintenance plan. You can also look into the condition and age of the plumbing and electrical. It’s important to know if you’ll need to replace any of these features so you can budget accordingly.

Photo by Jayson Trevino

Local Community

No one has insight into the area around a real estate listing quite like the agents and homeowners whose places you’re browsing. Ask about local favorite restaurants and cafes to learn who has the best tacos and dog-friendly patios. Knowing about the location of nearby parks and schools important factors to consider if you have children and are looking to enroll locally.

Start Viewing Chicago-area Homes Today

If you’re ready to find a new home in Chicago, contact the KlopasStratton Team today to begin asking all these important questions. Their experienced team can show real estate in Lincoln Park, Near North, Lakeview, West Town and other top-notch neighborhoods. You can rely on their expertise to share only the best listings with updated appliances, great air quality and excellent amenities like beautiful patios, proximity to top schools and unique architectural styles.

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5 Things to Look for When Viewing Real Estate