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The first (and most obvious) sign that you might be walking into a money pit is an "as is" clause. The house probably won’t qualify for a conventional mortgage, and if you buy it, you’re agreeing to buy all its problems. Before making an offer, have the house carefully inspected and gather repair estimates. If it’s listed with a broker, ask for a disclosure statement that lists all known material defects so you don't come across unpleasant surprises later.
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