Sounds like an interesting project! Unfortunately I can't address your question directly. But I do have one recommendation anyway--one that I have said over and over on this forum. That is, that the 3 most important words in real estate are "LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION!"
We once made the mistake of buying a "fixer upper" in an area of, shall we say, "lesser" homes. Definitely a mistake. For one thing, you may decide it's not worth making the improvements you really would like.
You're doing the right thing to ask about fixing it up. But do yourself another favor: before you sign that contract, take a REAL close look at the NEIGHBORHOOD it's in. Are the OTHER houses around it nicer and more valuable than the one you're looking at? Hopefully this is the case!
If not you just might be fighting an uphill battle.
Best of luck; keep us posted!
-k2 in CO.
The fact that you can pick up a house (and lot) for about the same price as just a lot does sound interesting--maybe even compelling. This tells me that some people just might go into the area and "scrape" existing homes and build new ones. If you are seeing this, I'd take that as a good sign.
Also, notice if the remodeled homes are being redone with quality work. Hopefully the most of the homes in the neighborhood are owner-occupied (you should be able to find this out--perhaps through the city's website or some other census info).
Another interesting "test" I like to recommend is that you walk around the area at night. Do you feel safe, or is there lots of traffic, noise, etc?
Again, I am just a homeowner who's done some serious remodels (not a realtor or other pro) so I can't speak to the estimates--other than that they "sound high". But remodeling can cost more than you think! I'd get some other estimates just in case. A lot of folks are hungry for work these days--it ain't the "roaring 90s" anymore!
You might pose the plumbing estimate on the plumbing area too; maybe some qualified plumbers can speak to your estimates.
Continued good luck; buying a home is a very exciting time!
I bought a 1916 2 story back in 1987. They had replaced the fusebox and cut all the wiring in the basement and replaced the knob-and-tube with sheathed electrical cable there plus replaced all the outlets with new one (still hooked up to the old wiring). At that time, I talked to a electrician and he gave an estimate of $6000 plus I would have to fix the holes he would have to cut in the walls. I ended up doing it myself for a little over $1000. If you don't hire someone and do it yourself, do talk to your local building inspectors office first. They gave me a lot of useful information on how to insure it's 100% legal when you're done. After I was done and was having my work inspected, I only had one minor item (not discussed), I didn't have a globe over a closet light. Very minor and easily fixed.
Do be sure to get a building permit for the work and have it inspected when done. If you don't and have a electrical fire, you might find your insurance won't cover the damage otherwise.
No connection to any building trade, just a homeowner that's also a do-it-yourselfer.
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