Buying a Fixer-Upper in the Triangle
Buying an old home, fixing it up, and selling it for a tidy profit seems like a pretty easy concept, but in reality, finding the right investment property for your project can be a bit more complex. Buy the wrong property and you could be looking at a costly and complicated undertaking. Fortunately, as your local Triangle house-flipping experts, we've got a few tricks up our sleeve when it comes to finding the right old house to make new. Read our tips below, then contact us, and let's find your ideal investment property in the Triangle.
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Tips for Picking the Perfect Fixer-Upper
Before you jump right in, here are some tips and things to consider that can help you spot and plan for construction issues or underlying problems—and avoid the really costly undertakings.
1. Work with an Inspector
One of the most important things you can do when buying a fixer-upper is to work with a knowledgeable inspector or contractor who will be able to tell you exactly what parts of your fixer-upper will need repairs and how much these repairs will cost.
2. Consider the Neighborhood
Homes in a historic district can be especially difficult to work with, as permits may be more difficult to obtain, and there may be some restrictions. You’ll also want to consider the other homes in the neighborhood, and what features and styles buyers in this area will be looking for. This can help you determine what features and upgrades you’ll need to spend on, and which you can forego.
3. Salvage Everything You Can
If charming-old-home is the look of the neighborhood, don’t go all out replacing all the fixtures or appliances! Buyers might be looking for an old-home feel. Save the charm, fix the problems.
4. Look for Landscaping
Homes with large or pleasantly-landscaped backyards have a charm all their own that you don’t have to spend money on.
5. Know the Easy Fixes
Sometimes the biggest turnoffs—ugly carpeting, wallpaper, or paint—are the easiest and least expensive fixes. Know how to look beneath the details, like old appliances or funky colors, to the true potential of a home.
6. Find Up-and-Coming Neighborhoods
You might be able to get a good deal for a home in a neighborhood that’s about to blossom! Look for things like proximity to downtown, local amenities, and new business developments. Areas like Downtown Clayton are known to be attracting new businesses and buyers.
7. Always Work with Professionals
The most important thing you can do is work with professionals you trust! Have a Realtor who knows the market and the neighborhood trends. Have a contractor who can estimate costs. And have an inspector who will know what repairs will be absolutely necessary for the safety and functionality of your home.
Things to Consider When Buying a Fixer-Upper
Structure and Foundation
These are the big repairs, and big repairs are expensive. Definitely double-check with your inspector, but some good indications are seeping water in the basement, slanting floors, and cracks.
Another costly repair is the roofing. Check for rot or damage, and be sure to consider that replacing roofing is expensive—and can require additional structural reinforcement if the new materials used will be heavier than the old materials.
Heating & Cooling Systems
How old is the furnace and what is its condition? How about the oil tank and water heater? And is there air conditioning? A home in Raleigh likely won’t sell for much without A/C.
Older plumbing is expensive to replace, and can be difficult to connect to newer plumbing systems. Check for leaks and the pressure, and consider the materials used in the current system, as bathroom or kitchen renovations could likely need plumbing additions or changes.
Old wiring can be a fire hazard, especially if it’s wired incorrectly. You may need to rewire or replace old systems.
Doors and Windows
Check for rot or damaged frames. Know that replacing old windows and doors can be expensive, especially if they are of an unusual shape or size.
Looking to Buy, Fix, and Sell a Home in the Triangle?
Thinking of buying an older or fixer-upper home in the Triangle, fixing it up, and selling it for more? Flipping houses is our specialty... so give us a call and let's get started! We're here to help you learn everything you need to know about buying an investment property in Garner, Clayton, or Raleigh, find the ideal property for your project, and ultimately sell it for a profit. So don't wait—call us today!
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