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How to Spot a Bad Property Renovation

Large bright room with windows of an ancient villa undergoing renovation. If you’re enthralled with investing in real estate, holding a single-family rental property could be favorable. Be that as it may, when seeking out your next investment property, you must perceive well the signs of an inexpertly executed renovation. A shoddy renovation can instigate extortionate repairs and maintenance costs, discordantly impacting your overall return on investment.

So, what are the common indications of an unacceptable renovation? Some of the most clear-cut indications include terrible workmanship, substandard materials, and incomplete projects. Here, we bring up a few of the prevalent signs of low-quality renovations so you can appropriately avoid them.

Rushed Workmanship

During a property inspection, taking into account signs of rushed workmanship is necessary. Seek out uneven surfaces, for example, wavy walls or flooring with recognizable slopes, which could denote poor attention to detail during renovations. Misaligned fixtures may point to rushed installation or wrong measurements. Examples are doors that don’t close smoothly or unevenly hung cabinets. In addition, it’s vital to closely check on inconsistencies in finishing, namely, gaps in trim or uneven paint application, which can imply a rushed completion.

In bathrooms and kitchens, draw attention to mussy grouting and caulking, with perceptible patches or uncorrected errors, which can denote potential issues that were overlooked during the renovation process.

Dangers of Low-Quality Materials

  • Paint and Finishes: Check closely for peeling or chipping paint shortly after application. Uneven or streaky paint connotes improper application or low-quality paint. Low-grade finishes will scratch straight away or render signs of premature wear.
  • Flooring: Laminate flooring with visible warping or buckling, particularly near moisture-prone areas namely bathrooms or kitchens. Tiles that crack or come loose, implying improper installation or unacceptable tile quality. Carpets that have uneven seams, fraying edges, or thin padding can be problematic and may require repair or replacement.
  • Cabinetry and Fixtures: Cabinets made of flimsy materials that feel unstable or reveal signs of sagging. Faucets, handles, or fixtures that there and then rust or corrode hint at poor-quality materials. Countertops that straight off scratch, chip, or stain indicate low-grade surfaces.
  • Doors and Windows: Be alert for poorly installed doors or windows that don’t close nicely or let in drafts. Signs of moisture damage around windowsills or door frames connote poor sealing or installation.
  • Electrical and Plumbing Fixtures: Outlets or switches that are not aligned correctly or manifest sparking signs. Leaky faucets, pipes, or visible water damage on walls since subpar plumbing work. Second-rate or outdated electrical wiring, evident through flickering lights or tripped circuits.
  • HVAC Systems: Defective or noisy heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems that may need frequent repairs. The absence of maintenance records for HVAC systems can indicate possible issues.

Cover-Ups and Quick Fixes

Be on the look out for cover-ups in property renovations. Freshly painted foundations or walls might cloak structural flaws or cracks. Abrupt cosmetic upgrades, for case in point, new tiles or paint in specific areas, could mask underlying concerns.

Look for inconsistencies or variations in finishes that might spell out attempts to bury issues. Concentrate on sudden fixes that seem totally different compared to the overall renovation, as they might cover deeper, unsettled issues.

Inconsistency in Design and Craftsmanship

While inspecting a property, pay close attention to design inconsistencies and craftsmanship variations. Immediate changes in style or inconsistent quality between areas could indicate many contractors or a lack of cohesive vision.

Deviations in craftsmanship quality may be evident in finishes, fixtures, or structural elements. Knowing these inconsistencies helps assess the overall quality of the renovation and the most probable underlying issues that might command closer examination or progression.

Documentation and Permits

Detailed documentation and valid permits are pertinent in checking property renovations. A lack of proper licenses may signify that the renovation work was achieved without following local building codes or regulations. To assure compliance, examine the authenticity of renovation details with local authorities.

Proper documentation ensures the legitimacy of upgrades and signifies adherence to regulations, preserving against risks connected with unpermitted or non-compliant renovations. Checking permits and documentation guarantees a smoother investment process and brings down the possibility of legal or structural issues hereafter.

Structural Integrity

Affirming structural elements during property inspections is foremost. Clear signs like sagging ceilings, wall cracks, or uneven floors could denote potential structural issues. Any visible pointers of structural compromise, like these for example, warrant closer examination by a professional. Being aware of and handling structural concerns at the inspection stage helps prevent future high-priced repairs and guarantees a secure investment in the property.

Identifying signs of rushed workmanship, cover-ups, inadequate documentation, and structural issues during property evaluations is necessary for investors. These indicators, in general, hint at more significant problems that might not be squarely visible. Being observant during property inspections assures against investing in a property that might seem enchanting on the surface but harbors underlying issues because of subpar renovations. By prioritizing a comprehensive evaluation, investors can make more informed and competent investment choices in the real estate market.


If you love to make wise real estate investments in Farmingdale, go no further than RPM Landmark. Our services offer market research and other useful resources to properly aid real estate investors. Please get in touch with us online or call 516-522-2859.


Originally Published on July 22, 2022

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