Re: This old house has multiple problems! Try to salvage or cut our losses & run?
Well, if I was in that position, I'd seriously analyze the whole situation.
First, is the structure solid and sound; is it well-built? If there are serious structural issues, it's often not worth the cost and effort to remedy UNLESS the house has significant architectural or historic value.
Secondly, is the foundation in good condition? If not, what will it cost in time, effort, and money to repair the foundation to provide a stable platform for the structure? How much leveling can be done without damaging the structure?
Third, is the roof in good condition? If not, what will it cost in time, effort, and money to repair or replace with architecturally appropriate materials? (The foundation should be repaired before the roof, as jacking on the house could create leaks in a brand new roof.)
With a good structure, a good foundation, and a good roof, everything else is cosmetic. Yes, even the mechanical systems. They certainly may need significant repair or replacement, but they can be dealt with more on an as-needed basis. Only the most emergent of mechanical issues should be dealt with before the structure, foundation, and roof are made sound, because you will not, upon sale of the house, recoup the cost of repairing mechanicals, wallboard, and flooring if the structure is failing.
The "Senior Member" designation under my name doesn't mean I know a lot, it just means I talk a lot.I've been a DIYer since I was 12 (thanks, Dad!). I have read several books on various home improvement topics. I do not have any current code books I can refer to. I was an apprentice plumber for two years.