Ambler is a borough in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania in the United States bordering Fort Washington, PA and Spring House, PA. Area-wise it is a small town (0.84 square miles) and is rich in cultural heritage.
While roaming around Ambler, one can notice that the city has a lot of old buildings. In fact, most of the houses in Ambler are old construction (usually built prior to 1970). Though these houses are part of the old cultural heritage, the age has had its effect and can be a matter of consideration when one is moving into such old houses. It may have been painted and renovated before being handed over to you, but this is just external modifications. There can be many hidden areas that would need your immediate attention.
The major intention of this blog is to give you a checklist of the problems that you must consider while moving into an old construction.
- The base has now aged
Time has its definite impact even over the solidly built homes. The main foundation takes up a variety of structural problems, like inner cracks, unevenness of the foundation wall, corrosion, dry rot, weaker foundation supports, damaged piers etc. They happen majorly due to abundant soil moisture, unstable bedrock, seismic activity like earthquake, and other perils. This means that there would be a restriction for you over the construction or repair work in the house that may directly or indirectly put pressure on the very foundation of the house.
- The electrical wiring system may need enhancement
We have more sophisticated electrical and electronic devices in the present century. The electrical systems in the old houses are not able to support these devices since they have a low capacity and ancient build-technologies. Plus, with time, there may have been a significant wear and tear. This may result in frequent shocks and short-circuits.
Apart from non-functionality of an electrical system in an old house, the arrangement of wires, plugs, socket, and switches may also pose an inconvenience for their use. For example, there may not be any electric socket in the bathrooms since the need for it was never felt at the time of the construction of the house. If you think the electrical system is in very bad condition, do not take chances but to replace the complete (or part) wiring system of the house.
- The wooden areas may have lost strength
The wooden floors, side panels, windows, doors, etc. may have stood against the time and with re-painting, looks as good as new, but internally, they must have lost the strength needed to safeguard you and your house. The week doors and windows can no longer guarantee the safety of your house against thieves. The weaken wooden floors are risky and are more prone to water retention, which may lead to several other problems like surface erosion, sudden flooding in the house, a severe dent, etc.
- The dampness may have been prevalent now
The major issue being faced by every old aged building is that of dampness when prolonged water continues to seep in the plaster of the walls or floor. This provokes various bacteria and viruses to surface up, bringing with them various health problems. Molds infestation is one the biggest result of damp walls or moisture in the inner home environment. Take measures to fix the root cause of dampness like leaking pipe, or roof and for molds, use various abrasive cleaning products to clean it manually.
- The resistance against pests may have lowered down
Old buildings are the favorite spot for all kinds of pests like rodents, ants, spiders, termites. Due to lack of proper maintenance, the small, practically invisible hole or cracks can encourage pests like ants to sweep in, causing destruction of food and other items. Termites are so powerful, that they can literally make the big pieces of furniture just vanish in no time. If you see the signs of termite damage like sagging or buckling floors, pinpoint holes in drywall, hollow-sounding wood supports or floorboards, and bubbling or peeling paint, immediately call experts from Ambler PA pest control services and prevent further damage to your property.
- Plumbing Problems
Before you move into the older home, you must know the age of the installed plumbing system and the material being used in supply and drain pipes. Materials like brass and copper can typically last for more than 50 years, while steel pipes can remain steady for about 20 years. Knowing this information, you can decide whether the present plumbing system is still going strong or need a replacement. To lower the financial stress, go for a replacement, if needed, in parts.
- Roof Problems
When you visit the house before agreeing to rent or buy it, never miss taking a look at the roof of the house. Roofs of older homes can be deteriorating, which may cause problems including pest infestations, interior damage due to water, and compromised (less effective) insulation. The potential roofs for mending or for complete replacement shows missing or damaged shingles, crumbling roof cement, bowed or sagged gutters, persistent moisture in the attic, evidence of water damage in the upper floors, and critters in the attic or upper crawlspaces.
The old houses and neighborhood give a more tight-knit feeling than the newer counterparts. But this feeling can’t be taken at the cost of one’s health and life. Do not be shy and talk openly to homeowners about all your concerns.