How to evaluate a house before making an offer?

The time has finally come in your life to make the big step. After probably a while thinking about it and making life and financial plans, you decided to buy a house. And that is great news, congratulations! When the initial decision is made, you started to do all the things necessary in order to prepare yourself for buying a house. You have worked hard for years to raise your credit score so you could apply for a low-interest rate loan. And finally, you did all you had to do to get the mortgage pre-approval. Of course, that is a very important part in every house shopping, in order for sellers to take you seriously into consideration as a buyer. Most real estate agents will demand this before proceeding to shop. And now you have to evaluate a house before making an offer. How do you do that?

Why do you need to evaluate a house before making an offer?

Firstly, you want to make sure that you know what are you buying. It’s one thing to give an offer and the seller accepts it. But, that shouldn’t be a goal for itself. What you need to find out is how much that house really worths, so that the money you give for it will pay off. That is why it’s important to consult experts from the field. Talk to the real estate company which is helping you move abroad or locally. Get in touch with constructors to find out what is the climate in the market and how are the prices going.

evaluate a house before making an offer - man pointing on a smiley face

Get information on time, so you could give a proper offer for the house

Whether you are planning to live in it or flip it, you need to be sure that you know what are you investing in. Of course, the timing is important. If you like the house, you probably want to give an offer as soon as possible. You’ll do everything to prevent anyone else taking it right in front of you. However, you shouldn’t rush the decision as big as this one. It’s crucial you evaluate a house before making an offer so that you know you will pay a fair price for it. It’s going to be too late if you get surprised by the problems after closing.

What to do?

Now that we established that it’s very important to evaluate a house before making an offer, we need to learn how exactly do we do that. So, no matter how much you like the house and you see yourself living in it, be patient. You want to call a great moving company such as Big Apple Movers NYC at the right time to relocate you, but you don’t want to go ahead of time. Therefore, this is what you should do:

  1. ask for an online home estimate,
  2. get yourself a really good real estate agent,
  3. insist on a home inspection before giving the offer.

After you go through these steps, you will have the right information to evaluate a house before making an offer and not make a huge mistake.

Ask for an online home estimate

This is a pretty logical step. You want to research the market and compare the cost of the house you are looking at with the others. Just as you would ask moving companies for their prices and rates if you wanted to move, you should ask real estate companies to determine the price of the wanted house. Some good websites would give you the formula to compare prices to other similar houses. Based on the recent prices and the condition of the house, you can get some general idea of the house’s worth. However, if the specific home has something unique, you should take it into consideration when setting the offering price.

Get yourself a really good real estate agent

Woman at the desk with notebook and laptop

A good real estate agent will guide you through every step of the way

Really a non-debatable fact. You wouldn’t go into the water without the lifeguard if you didn’t know how to swim, right? Well, it’s the same with house shopping. It is a priority to find a reliable and trustworthy real estate agent who will guide you through this whole complex process. He or she will not be here just to hold your hand, but to give insights and instructions on how to act. Real estate agents can tell what’s the general house market condition, what are the pros and cons of every neighborhood and how long has the property been on sale. That will help you evaluate which way your offer should go.

Insist on a home inspection before giving the offer

Even though it is one more cost to add to your credit card, it’s still something you should make sure to do in order to evaluate a house before making an offer. A licensed home inspector will go over the property and check out every part of your potential house. Afterword you will get a detailed report on the house’s condition and if there is any serious defects or repairs needed. Here are the stages of inspection:

  1. the external part of the house,
  2. the interior of the property,
  3. upgrades.

The thorough inspection, along with the mandatory answers to questions before purchasing a house will affect the offering price very much. That’s why you should be familiar with all stages of the process.

The external part of the house

The most expensive part of every house is a roof, and although it is built to last, it can’t last forever. Nevertheless, you should make sure to determine the exact condition of it, and how much time you have before having to repair it. This subject could be your big leverage in the negotiations if you come to that with the current homeowner or seller. Also, don’t forget to check the foundation of the house, basement and exterior walls. Severe damages on any of those could lead to either lower offering price or backing out of the buying.

Window on a roof

Roof and windows are the most expensive part of the house and you want to avoid repairs right away

The interior of the property

Although everything might look nice at first glance, unfortunately, that doesn’t have to be the case when you dig deeper. Start by checking the windows, and whether they are old or new. They are not only important to keep your interior safe and dry. But also to help you maintain temperatures and save money by good insulation. Besides windows, pay attention to the gas station, fuses, pipes, and electric panels. Try to figure out how long will they last before having to invest in repairs.


After you have checked the main outside and inside parts, it’s time to look even deeper. Everything that has been done in the kitchen and bathroom may be in a good condition. And you could use it for years to come. However, it may happen that you find out that you have to invest in some parts right away. That can seriously affect your budget. Imagen that you have to re-do the whole bathroom because there are leakages behind the shower. Can you afford that? That and other things are important. Especially in order to evaluate a house before making an offer. That way you can set your budget straight and know what are you dealing with.