How Much Fixing-Up is Too Much When Buying a Fixer Upper As a First Ho…

In a perfect world you would only want to seriously consider minor repairs such as new paint or substitute door knobs. The toughest part about those easy types of deals, are the fact that many homebuyers are thinking the exact same thing as you so those deals get snatched up fast when they’re on the market.

Where the real bargains are usually found are behind the homes which are eye-sores. These are the kind of homes which buyers excursion by the home and speed up and excursion away because of the way it looks. If you take the time to walk inside the home you may discover an impeccable interior which is immaculate, but because the owner was a hermit the outside was never that important to him or her. The old saying of, Do not estimate a book by its cover, applies here.

However, there are times when the home you may want requires considerably more than a fresh coat of paint or a brass door knob. In my years of experience first-time homebuyers should stay away from the major rehab or remodel jobs because of the skill and money required to complete the project. Additionally, there are other concerns in addition such as:

  • Draining your savings and bank account. If you’ve never tackled any remodeling job other than changing your wardrobe then you are in for a rude awakening regarding the true cost of remodeling. In most perfect situations it is often two to three times more than the estimated cost and in worst situations it is many more times the estimated cost.
  • Mortgage lenders may require some work to be done BEFORE approving you for the mortgage. Which method you will be on the hook financially before getting the mortgage. The requests the lender wants repaired are usually the most expensive repairs which make the house livable from the lenders perspective.
  • Stress on your relationship. There is inherent stress in buying a home which can test already the most obtain of relationships. Add to that the stresses of managing a construction crew, picking materials and draining your savings account and you have a ticking time bomb which needs less than a spark to go off. Make sure your partner knows exactly what plans A, B, C and D are before starting any project.

When deciding whether or not you should buy a fixer-upper, the best route is to choose a home which is somewhere in the middle between fresh coat of paint and new door knobs and structural repairs. You only want to consider renovating and putting in new flooring, new wall colors and new windows. You will want to stay away from new foundation, new roof and new electrical, plumbing or heating and cooling systems. When doing your research on a prospective house:

  • Question engineers, builders, and architects about the cost of any repairs or remodeling you may be considering.
  • Double check to make sure what you want to do is legal in the town or city you’re planning on living in. Many towns have some uncommon laws regarding building and remodeling.
  • Walk your partner by exactly what to expect when it comes to cost, timeline and stress level.

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