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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2008

    Default Re: Foundation repairs - risks

    Think of it this way: If all the houses there have failing foundations, what is that going to do to your property value when they are falling down all around you? How many other homeowners there are going to have the bucks to redo their foundations? Not many, nor will they be paying to bulldoze their newly-condemned house that nobody will be living in. It's a ghetto waiting to happen so stay away- in this case location is everything and this is a bad location.

    Here in SC, many communities were built by textile mill companies which towns grew around. Materials and methods used to build these "mill houses" were fast and cheap; good workmanship made them last. Now these are all at least 60 years old, and almost all have structural issues of one kind or another. Many which were not maintained well are gone or falling in standing and condemned. Though the geographical locations are often still good, none of these houses has much value because of what stands around them. $45-50K for a fully rehabbed 3 bedroom is top money. "Fixer-uppers" go for half of that or less. Tax auction sales can get you one for under $5K with about $10-15K more putting it into barely liveable shape, to be rehabbed as you go along. Bargains? No way. No matter how nice you make them, the neighborhoods keep the value down and will keep doing that for another 50 years till the rest of the 'mill houses' around them are bulldozed and new ones built. And even then, the old house won't pull what the new one next to it does on a sale, all other things being equal. For cheap living it can't be beat and the right ones make good rental properties but that's about it- nobody wants to live in the 'mill village' anymore if they can afford to do better. And just 25 years ago many of these were considered to be nice neighborhoods and good locations.

    You're in a similar fix and the only advice that will save you is to move elsewhere. It's not going to get any better while you're still alive.


  2. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Boston area

    Default Re: Foundation repairs - risks

    I agree if you aren't handy you might not want to do this, but it sounds like quite a deal to me! I doubt there will be many or any counter offers, if there are they are probably low balls from flippers. So find out what the worst-case cost would be and make your offer based on that.

    I recently bought a house with leaky foundations with bricks falling loose, questionable sill, wonky structure, holey roof, cracked plumbing, old electrical, etc. etc. It was really the only way I could afford this town. We made and offer, made it clear we weren't flippers, and got it. So far the assumed $20,000 in structural costs have not happened, so I guess we got a steal

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