Open Home checklist – what potential buyers should look out for when viewing a property

Potential homebuyers rarely have more than 30 minutes to tour a place that could potentially pay off over the next 30 years.

So what should you look for in an open home to get the most of the time?

Brisbane real estate agent Jamal Naouri said it was next to impossible to check everything during the half-hour window.

“[During] the first open home, you really want to know if this home is for you, “Mr Naouri told ABC Radio Brisbane.

Mr Naouri said the initial inspection should focus on the property’s layout and renovation potential.

“See if the kitchen leads to the deck or to the back yard,” he said.

“Take a look at the bathrooms – are they renovated?

“How big are the rooms?

“How big is the backyard? Is there a garage? Is there a carport?

“If this house meets 90 percent of your needs … book a second inspection.”

Mr Naouri also said there was no harm in arriving a few minutes early to open houses before the property was inundated by other buyers.

Jamal Naouri says the first inspection is to determine if the property suits your needs and lifestyle. (

ABC Radio Brisbane: Edwina Seselja


Sniffing around

When it comes to checking cabinets or dimensioning the shower, Mr Naouri says “go for it”.

But he recommended waiting until the second inspection.

Sorry, this audio has expiredMake the most of an open home Make the most of an open home

“If you open the dishwasher and it is very dirty or has oil or smells, it means it is not working and you need to ask questions,” he said.

“Turn on the faucet and you should notice the pressure of the water.

“If the pressure is low … it means there is a problem with the lines.

“Is it town gas or cylinder gas?”

Through the cracks

The Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) said potential buyers should be on the lookout for significant cracks inside or out.

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“[Look for] any obvious signs of water leakage, moisture or mold and any major stuck or inoperative windows or doors, “a spokesman said.

“It’s also good to check that all the lights are working, the taps are running, and the water in the showers and sinks is efficiently flowing down the drains.”

The meter box or the inside of the cabinet under the kitchen sink was also worth it, said the spokesman.

“The termite inspectors should have put a sticker here on their last inspection,” they said.

Things that people forget

Mr Naouri said while storage was always very important to buyers, it was often overlooked during inspection, as was access to the back yard.

“Can you come into the back yard with a small truck or car for landscaping?” he said.

Mr Naouri said people also forgot to check if there were internal stairs to garages or between parts of the house.

“When there are no internal stairs, internal stairs are really difficult to install,” he said.

“You basically have to rebuild the whole house.”

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He said the second inspection was the best time to thoroughly check the details and recommended booking the additional viewing for a different time of the day to see what the lights, noise and traffic were like.

He also recommended driving over in the evening.

The QBCC said anyone looking to bid on a property should always use licensed contractors to conduct building and pest inspections prior to purchase.

“This will give potential buyers information about the general condition of the home and any likely immediate work that may be required to correct any major defects found,” the spokesman said.

“While this is usually done by an attorney once a home is under contract, for a small fee a potential buyer may want to contact the QBCC and have a report drawn up on the property to see if there has been any recent construction House is still covered by the household contents guarantee. “

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