August 26, 2009
Ambitious first time buyer? Want a custom home but can't afford to buy new? Not afraid of spending some cash and possibly getting your hands dirty and doing some work yourself? Like the neighborhood and the price but not the condition? If you answered yes to these questions then maybe you are a person that should consider the idea of buying a fixer-upper?
Sometimes referred to as "handyman specials" and sometimes referred to as "red flags", fixer-uppers can range. They are usually homes with physical problems that may go further than "skin deep". Some of the problems are more cosmetic, such as peeling paint, broken windows, unsightly carpet and more. And some are hidden deeper and only found upon a whole house inspection and might include faulty electrical systems, a bad foundation, etc.
Many buyers want to go the safe, "known" route of buying a home that is in or near to move-in condition. Fixer-uppers take a person with some real ambition and go-get-em personality that have time and cash or other financial resources (to pay for the repairs and fixes). There is potential to be found in fixer-uppers but you must be careful to do your homework and get the help of professionals in order to make a sound decision about purchasing such a home.
Here are some tips for those brave enough to consider buying a fixer-upper:
- Location, Location, Location! Make sure you find a house in a location you are content with. If it's somewhere you plan on living consider the different aspects such as the neighborhood (are the other homes in good repair?) the noise level (freeways, trains, major roads) and also the area of town. Also, consider location if you are planning on renting it.
- Have a professional inspection. Yes, they are pricey (usually at least $250 in California) but it is really a necessary step to have a professional come give you their expert opinion. They might end up finding a fix that is way beyond your budget before you are obligated and in escrow.
- Get estimates on any repairs and renovations that will be required and make sure they will more than pay for themselves in increased property value.
Remember, in the end, the project will probably be more expensive and more time-consuming than you expected. Just make sure you know what you're getting yourself into- a BIG, possibly expensive and time-consuming project! But, if you end up getting a house you really love and is uniquely you in the end, then you will feel as though you have made a big accomplishment!
Information obtained from: http://www.frontdoor.com/buy/What-to-Know-About-Fixer-Uppers/1870
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Currently Ryan has about 30+ listings in inventory, and has sold 23 homes in 2009. Please don't hesitate to contact me with any questions about Chico area real estate.
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