It’s easy to get mesmerized by the marble countertops, beautiful bay windows, and elegantly staged furniture on a home tour, but it’s important to stay focused. When you’re taking a first look at a house, pay attention to the less exciting details, such as signs of water damage and creaky floors. Another tip: it’s perfectly okay to whip out your measuring tape, open and close the cupboards, and turn on the taps. Here are the seven things you should look for to ensure you’re getting the best deal.

Appliances

Scan the age and condition of the major appliances. Do they look outdated? Is there rusting? Are they working properly? While it’s difficult to know how much longer an appliance will last, taking a closer look during the tour will inform you of what repairs may be required in the future.

Lighting

Check the availability of natural lighting in every room. You may need to visit the house at different times of the day to see how morning and afternoon sun enters the home.

Sockets

Count the number of sockets in each room. Are there enough for all your needs? Are they placed in an area that’s ideal for how you want to arrange the room?

Room sizes

Staged furniture can be deceptive, tricking you into thinking that your existing furniture will fit right in. Measure the rooms to make sure there is enough space for all your furnishings.

Grout and caulking

If the grout and caulking in-between the tiles are loose and crumbling, it could mean that water is seeping through the walls or underneath the floor.

Uneven flooring

Cracks, creaking, and springy areas on the floor could be a sign of serious foundation problems that will need to be repaired in the future.

Water damage

Repairing damages caused by water can be expensive, so it’s worth taking the time to spot signs of water leaks. A home inspector will examine them more carefully, but you can also keep an eye out for spot stains, bulges on ceilings and walls, and discoloured paint.