It usually happens a few weeks after closing: You step into a wet spot in the basement. Or you hear a strange pinging every time you turn on the faucet. Or, as was my case, you realize one bedroom is noticeably warmer than the others—because its air conditioning duct is ripped, spewing cool air into the attic, while you drip in sweat as you sleep.
Ah, the joys of homeownership—where, as Debbie Downer as this may sound, you’re all but guaranteed to find something wrong with your pad shortly after moving in. At least that’s what a 970-person survey by warranty company Cinch Home Services found, with 95 percent of respondents saying they uncovered at least one issue with their house after being handed the keys.
More troubling, though, was that 60 percent of sellers admitted they sold a house with an issue the buyer wasn’t aware of. Depending on what the problem is—and what state you live in—that omission can be illegal, but at the very least, it’s annoying. So, we dug into the research to uncover which issues were the most common—and what you can do to protect yourself.