Searching for your new home can be very exciting. But exactly how do you go about finding that “diamond in the rough”?
The number one thing to remember is that cosmetic issues are easy to fix. So is the home you are considering a diamond in the rough or a nightmare that should cause you to turn and run?
Here are a few things to consider:
1. Don’t look at things like: bad decorating, dirty walls and floors, no grass or no landscaping. Not everyone is a good housekeeper so don’t let cleanliness get in the way of a potentially good home.
2. Don’t look at minor repair items such as: bent mini blinds, ripped carpets or linoleum, drippy faucets, broken light fixtures or holes in the walls (unless they have been opened to complete some type of major maintenance issue) etc.
3. Do look at the floorplan. If the floorplan does not suit you, look a little closer and see if the space can be reworked or if you can add on a room addition.
4. Remember that all surface issues are usually cosmetic. A little paint, carpet and linoleum can go a long way to making a home look as good as new. You can even ask the homeowner for a carpet allowance as a condition of the sale. Most homeowners realize that the carpet will need to be changed and are more than happy to accommodate you just to get the deal.
5. If the home lacks storage due to a converted garage, ask yourself if that space can be easily converted back to its original use.
6. If you don’t like the kitchen, don’t let that stop you from buying the home if you like everything but the kitchen. You can spruce up the kitchen later by adding new cabinets, countertops, flooring and some new appliances. These things will do wonders for the appearance of a kitchen.
7. If you want a pool, but the home you are looking at has a pool that needs repairs, the cost of a new pool will far exceed the cost of repairing an existing pool. So buy the house with a pool versus one without a pool. This will save you money in the long run. A pool is something that will not bring you a good return on your investment when you go to sell.
The very best advice we can give you is this – unless you build your dream home from scratch, you are probably not going to find everything you want. So make a list of the things that are the most important to you and make an offer on a home that has those qualities.