Warning Signs to Look for When Buying a Property in Southwest Florida

Fort Myers, Florida Aerial

So you’ve decided to look for another property to purchase, or your first flip. That’s a major decision that sets off a whole list of other decisions you’ll have to make. Depending on your circumstances, you may be willing to make an offer on a fixer-upper property. That’s not always a bad idea if you’re trying to save some money, but some warning signs should make you think twice before buying a property in Southwest Florida.


It’s not always easy to identify properties with mold problems. Mold can grow out of sight behind paint and within the walls. Other times it’s pretty obvious when a property has a mold problem. Mold growth can look like slimy, powdery, or fuzzy discoloration on walls. 

It has a damp, musty smell that may be apparent even if you can’t see visual evidence of its presence. While mold can grow anywhere if enough moisture is present, it’s most common in basements, crawlspaces, and bathrooms.


Brown and black ant

Regardless of where you choose to live next, you’ll find some sort of household pest in your area. Pests can threaten your home and your health, and they can be expensive to get rid of. Research the pests common to the area and watch out for signs of their presence. Inspect areas where they like to hang out. 

For example, cockroaches love to inhabit moist areas of a home like under sinks. Rodents may leave signs of their presence along baseboards and under furniture. If the property you’re considering has a serious infestation, think twice before making an offer on it.

Foundation Issues

Foundation Cracks

Foundation issues are another major red flag. If a property’s foundation has been compromised, you can expect some costly repairs in the future. Warning signs of foundation issues include doors that don’t align quite right, windows that are stuck or broken, slanted floors, and cracks in the walls. These signs warrant a closer investigation by a professional inspector who can give you a better idea of how extensive the damage is so you know what you’re getting yourself into.

No property is perfect; they’ll all have some form of damage. Some signs of damage are more concerning than others though. While choosing a fixer-upper house as your next home could help you save some money, certain warning signs could suggest that you’ll spend more than you saved on repairs. If your goal is to find more affordable housing, be careful about what fixer-upper issues you’re willing to deal with. Lastly, if you do not have the experience to identify these issues, it’s always a good idea to hire a competent home inspector to help.

Did you enjoy reading this article? Here’s more to read: How to Avoid Common Pitfalls in Real Estate Investing

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