If you are trying to buy a home on a budget, you may have started looking at fixer-uppers. Fixer-uppers usually sell for less than market value because they require some work.
The question then becomes, how do you tell the difference between a fixer-upper that is a great deal and a fixer-upper that is a waste of money? Here's what you need to know.
Where Is the Home?
A fixer-upper in a desirable neighborhood can gain value, but fixing up a home in a neighborhood where people are not excited to move may yield poor results. You should check out different statistics about the neighborhood before you buy, including school ratings and crime information.
Does the Home Need Foundational Work?
Homes that need work on the foundation or other major structural components are generally not worth the investment. These types of repairs are expensive and may not even be possible in some cases.
Does the Home Need a New Roof?
Homes that need a new roof are often not worth the investment. This is because roofs are expensive to replace and can be a major hassle.
If the rest of the house is in good condition, you may be able to get by with a repair, but it's better to stick with homes that need only cosmetic repairs if you are buying a fixer-upper.
Does the Home Have Water Damage or Mold?
Homes with water damage or mold are often not worth the investment. These types of problems can be expensive to fix and may even require you to gut the home and start from scratch. Otherwise, moving into the home could lead to health problems associated with mold.
How Is the Electricity?
If the home has outdated or damaged electrical wiring, it is not a wise investment. Electrical work requires a professional on the job because it can be dangerous, and it is also expensive. A good fixer-upper will have good electrical wiring.
How Long Has the Home Been on the Market?
Homes that have been on the market for a long time may be a red flag. This could mean that there are serious problems with the home that the previous owners could not fix or were not aware of. You should have a professional inspector check the home before you buy a home.
Talk to Your Real Estate Agent Before Buying a Home
Your real estate agent will be able to tell you more about the home-buying process. They will also be able to help you find the right home for your needs and budget.