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How to Spot a Bad Property Renovation

Large bright room with windows of an ancient villa undergoing renovation. If you’re intent on investing in real estate, gaining a single-family rental property could be helpful. Nonetheless, when going after your next investment property, you must know very well the signs of a faultily executed renovation. A shoddy renovation can bring on highly-priced repairs and maintenance costs, unfavorably impacting your overall return on investment.

So, what are the common indications of a blotched renovation? Some of the most observable indications include unpleasant workmanship, substandard materials, and incomplete projects. Here, we take up a few typical signs of low-quality renovations so you can adroitly avoid them.

Rushed Workmanship

During a property inspection, being alert for signs of rushed workmanship is beneficial. Find uneven surfaces, such as wavy walls or flooring with perceivable slopes, which could imply poor attention to detail during renovations. Misaligned fixtures may point to rushed installation or mistaken measurements. For instance, doors that don’t close smoothly or unevenly hung cabinets. Indeed, it’s salient to keep watchful for inconsistencies in finishing such as gaps in trim or uneven paint application, which can imply a rushed completion.

In bathrooms and kitchens, watch out for sloppy grouting and caulking, plus evident patches or uncorrected errors, which can illustrate potential issues that were overlooked during the renovation process.

Dangers of Low-Quality Materials

  • Paint and Finishes: Be alert for peeling or chipping paint shortly after application. Uneven or streaky paint entails improper application or low-quality paint. Low-grade finishes will scratch promptly or denote signs of premature wear.
  • Flooring: Laminate flooring with visible warping or buckling, exactly near moisture-prone areas such as bathrooms or kitchens. Tiles that crack or come loose, revealing improper installation or awful tile quality. Carpets that have uneven seams, fraying edges, or thin padding can be problematic and may mandate repair or replacement.
  • Cabinetry and Fixtures: Cabinets made of flimsy materials that feel unstable or disclose warnings of sagging. Faucets, handles, or fixtures that without delay rust or corrode show poor-quality materials. Countertops that directly scratch, chip, or stain, implying low-grade surfaces.
  • Doors and Windows: Consider poorly installed doors or windows that don’t close satisfactorily or let in drafts. Signs of moisture damage around windowsills or door frames could mean poor sealing or installation.
  • Electrical and Plumbing Fixtures: Outlets or switches that are not aligned correctly or reveal sparking signs. Leaky faucets, pipes, or visible water damage on walls traceable to subpar plumbing work. Defective or outdated electrical wiring, evident through flickering lights or tripped circuits.
  • HVAC Systems: Ineffective or noisy heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems that may call for frequent repairs. The absence of maintenance records for HVAC systems can indicate possible complexities.

Cover-Ups and Quick Fixes

Be aware of cover-ups in property renovations. Freshly painted foundations or walls might keep secret structural flaws or cracks. Hurried cosmetic upgrades, for example, new tiles or paint in specific areas, could mask underlying risks.

Look for inconsistencies or variations in finishes that might insinuate attempts to obscure issues. Give particular attention to swift fixes that seem different from the overall renovation, as they might cover deeper, yet-to-be-settled issues.

Inconsistency in Design and Craftsmanship

While inspecting a property, pay great attention to design inconsistencies and craftsmanship variations. Hasty changes in style or inconsistent quality between areas could indicate several contractors or a lack of cohesive vision.

Deviations in craftsmanship quality may be apparent in finishes, fixtures, or structural elements. Awareness of these flaws helps assess the overall quality of the renovation and presumable underlying issues that might call for closer examination or correction.

Documentation and Permits

Extensive documentation and valid permits are crucial in assessing property renovations. A lack of proper licenses may depict that the renovation work was made without compliance with local building codes or regulations. To ensure compliance, look into the authenticity of renovation details with local authorities.

Proper documentation vouches for the legitimacy of upgrades and denotes adherence to regulations, guarding against risks involved with unpermitted or non-compliant renovations. Carefully considering permits and documentation warrants a smoother investment process and lowers the possibility of legal or structural issues at a later time.

Structural Integrity

Closely examining structural elements during property inspections is vital. Blatant manifestations like sagging ceilings, wall cracks, or uneven floors could hint at potential structural issues. Any visible signs of structural compromise, these for example, warrant closer examination by a professional. Properly identifying and resolving structural concerns at the inspection stage helps prevent future highly-priced repairs and promises a secure investment in the property.

Digging up signs of rushed workmanship, cover-ups, inadequate documentation, and structural issues during property evaluations is important for investors. These indicators typically hint at more grievous problems that might not be outrightly visible. Being wholly attentive during property inspections vouches against investing in a property that might seem gorgeous on the surface but harbors underlying issues caused by subpar renovations. By prioritizing a detailed evaluation, investors can make more informed and assured investment choices in the real estate market.


If you seriously want to make wise real estate investments in Tulsa, go no further than RPM Tulsa. Our services offer market research and other good resources to profitably aid real estate investors. Please get in touch with us online or call 918-532-7020.

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