28
   

No place like home

 
 
Mame
 
  2  
Reply Sat 27 Feb, 2010 12:14 pm
@mac11,
I would be feeling pretty gloomy about some of those, too.

I don't think the GFCI boxes are not a big deal to replace.

ABS Pipes: Maybe just a smaller size? Have to ask someone else.

The breaker box and alum. wiring being fire hazards are a concern.

Floors being unlevel is not really an issue as long as the settling is DONE. All homes settle somewhat.

Patio draining is an issue.

Just replace the door frame at the front door threshold.

Did he estimate the repair/replacement costs for you? If so, take that back to the vendor and see what they will fix and what discount on the rest they will give you... then you'll have the $ to pay for them.

Best of luck, mac.
mac11
 
  1  
Reply Sat 27 Feb, 2010 12:16 pm
@Eva,
Eva, it was built in 1975. Most of the townhouses I can afford are from the '70s.
0 Replies
 
mac11
 
  1  
Reply Sat 27 Feb, 2010 12:19 pm
@Mame,
Mame, you're right, some of these issues are bigger deals than others.

I don't know if the report will include costs of repairs. He gave me some costs verbally.
Mame
 
  2  
Reply Sat 27 Feb, 2010 12:20 pm
@mac11,
Ask him to include the repair/replacement costs in the written report, mac, so you'll have something official in writing to take back to the vendor.

My last house had $10,000 worth of issues and the vendor reduced his price accordingly.

Very important to ask BEFORE he presents it to you.
hamburgboy
 
  2  
Reply Sat 27 Feb, 2010 12:27 pm
@mac11,
you might ask a general contractor to give you an estimate of the repair cost .
it would be useful to have a breakdown of cost by individual items and total cost - which likely should be somewhat lower then the individual items added up .
you want to be especially sure that the house is structurally in good shape .
best of luck !

( would shopping around for a property be useful or is it a seller's market ? )
0 Replies
 
Eva
 
  1  
Reply Sat 27 Feb, 2010 12:29 pm
It should be the seller's responsibility to correct these things before the closing. I'd ask for written confirmation that the repair work was completed, and I'd do a walk-through myself or get a second inspection after the work is completed.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 27 Feb, 2010 12:31 pm
@Mame,
Quote:

Ask him to include the repair/replacement costs in the written report, mac, so you'll have something official in writing to take back to the vendor.

in America home inspectors only get paid a few hundred dollars so they are not going to go to a lot of extra work, and they usually know little about the cost of repairs. Estimates from contractors will be needed.

Unless mac thinks that the sellers might come down in price most of enough to cover repairs this one is a dud. It is financial suicide to get locked into a home with major problems that you dont have the money to fix. she needs one with cosmetic problems, that can afford to sit for awhile. Water problems? foundation problems? no way.

a good rule is to never get your heart set on a place until you get the inspection report back. Now you know why.
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Sat 27 Feb, 2010 12:33 pm
@hawkeye10,
They get paid a few hundred dollars in Canada, too, and will include the costs if you ask. They usually have a pretty good idea of what it would entail to repair or replace something. But, I don't live in America, so I'll take your word for it that it's different there.
0 Replies
 
Region Philbis
 
  1  
Reply Sat 27 Feb, 2010 12:34 pm
@mac11,

it's good that you're taking the time to go over the property with a fine-toothed comb.
better to find everything that needs fixing now, rather than later.

when we bought chez philbis, we had no idea the oil burner was ancient and needed to be replaced
until that first chilly autumn morning -- 6 months after we bought the place...
0 Replies
 
CalamityJane
 
  2  
Reply Sat 27 Feb, 2010 12:53 pm
@Eva,
How exciting, mac11! Congratulations and I hope you'll be very happy with your new home. Yes, we (Germans) give bread and salt at a housewarming party -
may you never run out of either was the idea behind it.


Eva wrote:

It should be the seller's responsibility to correct these things before the closing. I'd ask for written confirmation that the repair work was completed, and I'd do a walk-through myself or get a second inspection after the work is completed.


Eva, that could backfire as sellers tend to use the cheapest means to repair
things i.e. unlicensed handyman, shady craftsmanship, etc. It's much better
to get a price reduction and do it yourself.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 27 Feb, 2010 01:00 pm
@CalamityJane,
Quote:
Eva, that could backfire as sellers tend to use the cheapest means to repair
things i.e. unlicensed handyman, shady craftsmanship, etc. It's much better
to get a price reduction and do it yourself.

agreed, but this is also why sellers will not normally agree. they are not willing to come down in price the full amount of a reputable contractor done repair when they know they could get the job done for half the price, or less.

0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  2  
Reply Sat 27 Feb, 2010 02:48 pm
- ABS plumbing pipes (I'm not clear on why that's bad)

http://www.hometime.com/Howto/projects/plumbing/plum_2.htm - just a description, not research on how it might be bad.

I think ABS is what I have in my duplex, but here they are called butylene. My contractor told me they are famous for being brittle. My inspector either missed them or didn't think they were something to warn about. I found out from the contractor that people in this neighborhood had filed and won a class action suit - some time before I bought the house - and those listed in the suit had their pipes replaced. Others have told me they are perfectly fine.
Well, one day I went to remove my hose from the hose bib in the front yard, barely looking at it, thinking, if thinking at all, that it was some silverish metal. It snapped off. I'm afraid to try to replace the bib (which doesn't leak but won't take a hose attachment now) because I don't want to snap the pipe within the house wall. Very annoying since I have some brass hose bibs that I brought with me when I moved, having in my prior life installed irrigation a few times, and having some leftover bits and pieces.

When I got a new stove, they found a big patch in the concrete (past pipe break?) when they dragged out the old one. My duplex neighbor had a plumbing wall break before I moved here. (I had never heard of butylene before I got to New Mexico.)
Anyway, changing out the pipes to pvc or whatever else is better now is an expensive proposition.

My place is a lemon - long story, lots of stuff the inspector missed. The ABS thing may be arguable, I'd research that more.

The wiring thing is a flag to me - I was told about needing improved GFI, thought sure, some new GFIs and no, my contractor later said the box was wired strangely, I need an electrician. (Money I don't have.)

Patio draining, eek. Mine drains weirdly by the back door, and I saw it as I went through the house, but thought I would fix it, knowing patio/walkway design as I do, but again, money money. Luckily water doesn't come in the house, but this all annoys my know-better self re the design.

I won't go on, but summarize that this housing tract is the worst I've ever seen for this kind of stupidity. And I'm irritated at myself for being in such a hurry to buy.
This doesn't mean yours is a lemon, but I'd check carefully on costs.


Pemerson
 
  2  
Reply Sat 27 Feb, 2010 03:58 pm
@ossobuco,
osso, you bought a house similar to the one we bought 4 years ago in a Sun City here in Texas. We were in a hurry and were so excited about this garden home (they were building about 80/month.) We began looking for another house shortly after we moved in, but, money, money is right. Took us 3 years to find, well, just a well built small house in a great neighborhood. We made an offer on a cute brick house on half-acre, was about to be repossessed. The inspectors told us a dozen or so things were wrong but we bought in anyhow.

Hey, we haven't found anything wrong with this really well built home with new furnace, tile, some paint, roof 3 yrs. old (house was blt in 1992. We found out the inspectors didn't want us to buy it. 3 offers were presented after ours, meaning 3 "investors" were waiting for the place to be repossessed the next month - somebody was being paid off somewhere.

Still, we've worked like slaves doing something about that horribly offersized yard and we need a new driveway and the privacy fence is rotting. BUT, we've found that our old neighbors in Sun City have a law suit going concerning breaking pipes, falling limestones, and the HOA fees keep going up. The builder, Pulte, is so darn cold to those people. I couldn't handle the stress of that board of directors, who lie, lie about everything. We sold that garden home just months before the housing crash, so we did make money. The buyers paid $500 to make sure the floor was level. (the tile was cracking around the living room bath and kitchen, probably unlevel foundation.

But, this messy buy & sell followed two houses falling through prior to Sun City. One, quite frankly, scared me to death so we backed out, lost our $1,000 deposit. That was after another falling thru because the seller's husband owed back taxes.

So, Mac, buying and selling houses is a real trial. Hope you make the right decision about your offer on that townhouse. I don't know you but I've read you here & there on these threads. Good luck.
0 Replies
 
mac11
 
  1  
Reply Tue 2 Mar, 2010 09:44 pm
Thanks for the input, everybody. The research continues. Still in the process of getting quotes for repairs. The option period lasts until Sunday, at which point I'll only be out the $100 earnest money and money paid to inspector.
Region Philbis
 
  2  
Reply Wed 3 Mar, 2010 12:32 pm
@mac11,

prolly don't have to tell you this, but...

it's a good idea to keep the info on the contractors you wind up using.
if you are pleased with their work, you might be able to call them for something else.
if it's something they don't specialize in, ask them if they can recommend someone they know.

also, make sure the contractors you hire are insured.

also, find out if you need a construction permit prior to commencement of anything major (roof, siding, new fence, etc)...
shewolfnm
 
  1  
Reply Wed 3 Mar, 2010 12:41 pm
I dont know if craiglist is a big thing there?? But here I know right now you can find some beautiful solid wood antique dressers for next to NOTHING . Great style, fantastic quality, unique pieces.. 150 or less sometimes.

Ikea is great for the small things around the house. Plates, bowls, rugs, etc.
Good thing about extra rooms is that they DONT have to be filled Smile and you can shop and shop and shop looking for just that right -something- that you like.


Im happy for you!!! Yay!!
mac11
 
  1  
Reply Wed 3 Mar, 2010 03:16 pm
@Region Philbis,
Lots of good advice there, reeg. And not only might I need a construction permit, I'd probably need permission from the homeowners' association.
0 Replies
 
mac11
 
  1  
Reply Wed 3 Mar, 2010 03:17 pm
@shewolfnm,
Yep, craigslist is big here too. I already looked a little, but since I'm not moving for two months, it seems a bit premature. Plus I don't feel quite locked in to this house yet.
0 Replies
 
mac11
 
  3  
Reply Tue 9 Mar, 2010 10:02 pm
Ok, I'm feeling more locked in now. The option period is up. The only possible obstacle now is the mortgage company's appraisal which should happen in the next week. Keep your fingers crossed...
mac11
 
  1  
Reply Sun 14 Mar, 2010 08:13 pm
Can anyone recommend a home warranty company? (Or would you like to warn me away from yours?)
 

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