Well maintained heritage homes with charm and character do not come on the market very often. Since heritage homes are so unique and rare, a listing can often attract multiple buyers and sell over asking price. Your best course of action to be the successful buyer of a heritage house is to work with a Realtor who has experience selling heritage homes and ensure you have enough time to complete your due diligence before making an offer.
When choosing a Realtor to work with to help you find a heritage house, it is recommended you ask the following questions to ensure they have the knowledge and expertise to guide you through the purchase:
Have you ever sold a heritage house?
What is a Heritage Revitalization Agreement?
What can you tell me about the Heritage Register?
What does it mean when a home is listed on the Heritage Register?
What is the difference between a home being “listed” and being “designated”?
What do you know about knob and tube wiring?
Do you know about Power Check? Have you ever used them?
What do you know about: Vermiculite? Insulating a heritage house? Old windows and heat loss?
What are the costs of owning a heritage house?
What are the insurance issues with owning a heritage house?
What are the restrictions with renovating, painting, or building an addition?
What issues can I expect when renovating a heritage house?
Do heritage houses retain their value for resale?
In addition to working with a Realtor experienced with heritage homes, you want to ensure your financing is approved and you complete a pre-inspection with a professional building inspector before you make an offer. By having your financing approved and an inspection done, you will be able to make a subject-free offer if there are multiple offers.
You should also talk to a planner at City/Municipal Hall if you have questions about the heritage status of the house, potential land use or development options in the future, and large scale renovations.