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6 tips for successfully purchase an existing single-family house

Existing single-family house: It is often said that buying a home is the investment of a lifetime.

After the crash, comes the time to get detailed information to go to the purchase and sign the sales agreement.

The location, insurance, energy performance diagnosis, or even the market price, here are some criteria to take into account before you start buying your new home.

Existing single-family house: The location and the quality of its environment

Choosing to buy a house is above all choosing your living environment. A good environment enhances your property.

It all depends on your desires: living in the city, in housing estates, in the suburbs or in the middle of fields… What are you looking for?

The environment is also the reputation of the neighborhood. A small neighborhood survey may be necessary to get started.

You can look for a home in a quiet neighborhood, away from traffic routes, away from children’s parks or schools.

Or on the contrary, you prefer a lively neighborhood life, restaurants nearby …

Another thing, it is sometimes necessary to check if your future home will be well served by public transport and close to amenities, shops, the doctor, the pharmacy, and the markets.

 The local market price

A crucial step in your purchase project: the market study. To analyze the price of living space, it is best to consult real estate advertisements (on the internet in particular) and compare properties similar to the one you want to buy.

You also have the option of contacting your notary who, as a market observer, will be able to provide you with statistics.

The real estate knowledge of a notary makes it possible to observe the state and evolution of the market, the levels and trends of house prices, in old as in new.

The choice of the manufacturer

To get a good idea of ​​the quality with which a detached house has been built, there is nothing like finding out about the builder behind the work.

Depending on the date of construction of the house, it is not easy to know who the builder was. If the house you spotted is over 20 years old, you don’t need to dig there.

On the other hand, if the house was built recently, you will be able to obtain the name of the builder (often from the seller or his notary).


Once in possession of this information, the investigation begins …

Analyzing the quality of a builder of single-family homes before buying an existing house mainly consists of gathering information from its customers (former customers).

Do not go digging in the departmental archives, the reputation of the manufacturer is on the internet!

We suggest that you type the name of this manufacturer into your search engine and analyze the available reviews: on Google, on the RS Property website or elsewhere.

 Energy performance diagnosis

The DPE (also called property diagnosis) must be carried out by a professional: the diagnostician. It is mandatory in the context of the sale of real estate.

It allows you to make an inventory of the house, to check if all the installations are safe and comply with regulatory requirements.

In reality, the DPE is made up of several studies which give a complete analysis of housing: surface area (Carrez law), energy performance, asbestos (for any housing for which the building permit was filed before July 1, 1997),

lead(for any building for residential use for which the building permit was filed before January 1, 1949), termites, state of natural hazards and pollution, greenhouse gases, electricity, noise exposure plan. 

It is important to read the conclusions carefully: if they look bad, there is a good chance that the asset is underperforming on the energy plan.

You would therefore be getting into a real financial pit to bring this defective property up to standard.

House maintenance history

A healthy house is a well-maintained house. Having access to a precise history of the maintenance carried out on the house over the past few years is a plus.

The next thermal regulation (called RE2020) will require the establishment of a housing information booklet (CIL) .

This logbook will keep a history of upkeep and maintenance work carried out by successive owners. This obligation will be effective on July 1, 2021.

However, as of today, some manufacturers are offering this solution to their customers. If so, now is the time to take a look!

Structural damage insurance

Structural Damage insurance (DO) is compulsory for any construction of a single-family house.

It allows the owner to be covered in the event of a loss that would affect the solidity or livability of the house.

The DO is transferable: it is passed from owner to owner until the expiration of its 10-year period.

If the date of receipt of the house is, therefore, less than 10 years (date of the end of construction work) then you benefit from this insurance.

What you must remember

In short, choosing the right house and avoiding unpleasant surprises often requires spending a little time.

Do not forget that you have the possibility of calling on real estate experts if you wish to be accompanied during all these stages.

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