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First Home Purchase Hesitation


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  • First Home Purchase Hesitation

    Hello all! I am in a bit of a dilemma here and I was looking for some advice from people who are familiar with the work involved with remodeling parts of a home.

    My husband and I have decided to try and buy the house we are currently renting, and agreed to purchase or vacate by May 1st.
    This house is 7 houses down from my parents, in a wonderful neighborhood, with so much potential.. However I am fearful it could be a money pit, and we just cannot see paying his asking price, if he won’t fix anything before selling it. We wouldn’t have any money left over for restoration or costly upgrades if we pay the full price he’s asking. We've qualified, but we're hesitant. (3/2, 1400 sqft, 91 home, asking 150)

    The house has been a rental house for the last 10 years, and there hasn’t been much up-keep done to it during this time. I asked an inspector to come out and give me advice on the condition of the home. Parts of the roof are damaged from pressure cleaning, one of the three sun-lights are leaking, causing the paint on the roof and walls to fall off. Some outlets are loose/not working, and one will not “trip”(I don’t know the right terminology) so it’s a safety hazard, the hot water heater needs to be replaced, the AC just broke (original) again for the 2nd time in a year, hardware is rusting and falling off, doors don’t open and close, and the sink in the kitchen is set in the corner of the counter (“L” shape), which makes water spill over when you try to do anything in the sink, which has caused water damage to the cabinets below (they will not close, they stand open maybe an inch).

    The house must have the sun-lights fixed, the AC fixed, and the electrical outlets fixed before it can be insured. However, I am concerned about the cabinets… two are significantly damaged. My dad is retired and I know wouldn’t mind doing some handy-work, but I am concerned of how costly, and time-consuming this may be, or if it would even be possible to fix a “part” of the counters without having to replace them all.

    Could anyone suggest if this cabinet fix would be possible? Would all of these fixes be more work and money than it would be worth?

    I’d appreciate any responses and can provide pics if they would be helpful!

    Thank you!

  • #2
    It's really hard for anyone to say what costs would be without seeing and assessing the work involved. You could have a contractor come out and give you an estimate on what it would cost to have everything repaired. I don't know where you're located, but in the area I live $150K would be way too much for an older 1400sf. home that hasn't been well maintained. Also if a skylight is leaking and the roof is in bad shape there may be other hidden damage such as rotten sheeting underneath the roofing material. My suggestion would be getting a few estimates and having the house appraised. Estimates will probably be free, but you'd have to pay for the appraisal. At least estimates would give you something in writing that maybe you could use for negotiating a price with the seller.
    Last edited by FordMan59; 01-29-2015, 10:49 PM.


    • #3
      A house that has been rented for ten years with no updating has to be a money pit. I would run away real fast.

      If you watch any of the home shows that my wife likes so much you will see that where you live dictates home values. In California and Canada you might pay over $1,000,000 for the same house that would cost you $175,000 in Indiana. Do your research.