Checklist for viewing a period property
No house that is been standing for 100+ years is going to be in perfect nick, so when viewing a period property there is always an element of judgment about what you are happy to live with, how much you want to take on, and how much making the necessary changes will cost.
Some things only professional checks and a proper survey will answer, but there is a huge amount you can take away from a first viewing, particularly if you enter armed with the right questions. Here is a checklist of things to consider:
Exterior of Building
1. Do the roof-tiles look in good shape? How do they compare to surrounding houses?
2. Is all the guttering connected? Are there any signs of leaks?
3. Is the brickwork/ plaster in good condition? Does it need pointing?
4. Is there a television aerial on the roof? Is it connected?
5. Is there external evidence of damp-proofing or air-vents?
6. What condition is the paintwork?
7. What is the access to the front/ back door like? Are there steps?
8. Security! Is the back of the property secure? Overlooked? Is there a lock on the back gate?
9. Amenities! Is there an outside tap? Outside lighting? Shed? Where does rubbish go?
10. How are you separated from neighbours gardens? Condition of walls/ fences?
11. How much sun do you get? Is there a big tree next door blocking off light!
12. What is the noise like?
13. Does the interior show any signs of damp?
14. Are there open fires? Have they been regularly used? Are there original fireplaces?
15. Are there any significant cracks in the ceilings/ walls? Is the plasterwork ok or shot to pieces?
16. Are the radiators all working? Is the boiler in good nick? How does the flu reach the outside?
17. Can you double-lock the front door? Is an alarm fitted?
18. Do the electrical sockets look old/ new?
19. Are the windows original? Any sign of rot? Do they open? Are they secure?
20. Do all the interior doors open and close properly?
21. How does sound travel? Can you hear the neighbours? Traffic outside?
22. Has the loft been converted? Look in the attic – is it boarded? Any sign of leaks?
23. How overlooked are the bedrooms?
24. How quirky is the layout? Could you get your furniture in?
25. Is there enough light getting into the house?
26. What is the condition of the carpets and/or floorboards?
27. Are appliances being left behind? Do they work?
28. What type of stove is there? Check the gas rings.
29. Is there a space for a dishwasher and washing machine?
30. How much storage is there? Is there sufficient counter space?
31. Is there any sign of leaking under the kitchen sink?
32. Is there an extractor fan?
33. What are the shower/ tap pressures like?
34. Any sign of water damage? State of tiles/ grout?
35. Flush the toilet – does it work ok/ fill up quickly?