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#804018 - 08/18/04 07:37 PM I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
MizMelody2001 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 230
Loc: USA
I'm presented with the possibility of buying this house if the loan goes through as planned....

What do you think of this house?

It' 3 bedrooms, in the centre of town, near a hospital and elementary school. It has central heat and air, and a screened in porch in front. It was built in 1936 but refurbished in 1996, when it was electrically rewired and the central heat and air were added. Problem is, there are a few parts on the floor that slope a little, from settling I'm told and the carpet needs replacement. It needs to be painted as well, which isn't a big deal. They're asking $65,000..... I don't know whether to risk it..... I won't have money to make any repairs and could a slightly sloping floor lead to structural problems? I'm told it's from settling and shouldn't get any worse....

There's a photo of the outside of the house found here:

http://listings1.mlsgateway.com/Search/S...19&PropType=Res

I have never bought a house but the monthly payments would only be around $100 - $150 more per month than what we're paying for rent right now..
I thought about what everyone said about improving my life and savoring what really matters and recognizing my blessings.... we'd ben looking for aa house for some time but couldn't find anything we could afford that was liveable and so we sort of gave up and then I got an email about this house... It's an unexpected opportunity. What do you think? I'd appreciate your advice and suggestions. I'm scared!
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www.mizmelody.clubfreestyle.net

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#804019 - 08/18/04 07:42 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
JBryan Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/19/02
Posts: 9798
Loc: Oklahoma City
Find an independent inspector (someone who is not connected with the realtor) to look at it. Make sure you know all the problems before you buy them. Also, at 100 to 150 a month that sounds like a 30 year mortgage. You will pay an awful lot of interest if it is.
_________________________
Better to light one small candle than to curse the %&#$@#! darkness.

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#804020 - 08/18/04 07:42 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Karen Bretz Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/17/02
Posts: 215
Loc: Anchorage, Alaska
Hire an inspector (who is unaffiliated with the real estate agents) to give you an opinion.

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#804021 - 08/18/04 07:44 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Jack Frost Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/10/03
Posts: 4454
Loc: Maine
Melody,

Where do you live? Where I am in Maine that house for $65k would be a very good deal. It is funky and has a lot of potential. Needs some gardens!

Owning is almost always better than renting, but you made some mention of a marriage in trouble so maybe this investment is not timely, unless it is just you and your son.

By the way....I am glad you are back.

jf
_________________________
"Make the pie higher." GWB

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#804022 - 08/18/04 07:44 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
MizMelody2001 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 230
Loc: USA
The monthly mortgage payments would be around $350-$400 per month, including home insurance. I would be buying on a 30 year loan, but only 2-5 % dependnig on whether I put down sn $1800 down payment.... It would be a Hud loan with bond program money.....
_________________________
www.mizmelody.clubfreestyle.net

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#804023 - 08/18/04 07:45 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Jeffrey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/18/04
Posts: 2948
Loc: New York
Yup. Only way to know is to pay a few hundred dollars of your own money to get an independent opinion from an inspector. It would be foolish not to, given the amount of money a mistake could be to you. Don't give into any pressure to buy w/o an independent inspection. Glad you are back posting here. \:\)

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#804024 - 08/18/04 07:45 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
MizMelody2001 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 230
Loc: USA
Are independent inspectors expensive, becuase despite this opportunity to get a home loan, I'm pretty poor.
_________________________
www.mizmelody.clubfreestyle.net

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#804025 - 08/18/04 07:46 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Jack Frost Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/10/03
Posts: 4454
Loc: Maine
Inspectors are a few hundred dollars and worth it.

jf
_________________________
"Make the pie higher." GWB

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#804026 - 08/18/04 07:48 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Jeffrey Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/18/04
Posts: 2948
Loc: New York
Should be in the low to mid hundreds. But think of the monetary cost of a mistake, if you don't get an accurate evaluation of the structural condition of the house. No way we can know via the internet, not being house experts, whether there is any problem or not.

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#804027 - 08/18/04 07:50 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
MizMelody2001 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 230
Loc: USA
 Quote:
Originally posted by Jack Frost:
Melody,

Where do you live? Where I am in Maine that house for $65k would be a very good deal. It is funky and has a lot of potential. Needs some gardens!

Owning is almost always better than renting, but you made some mention of a marriage in trouble so maybe this investment is not timely, unless it is just you and your son.

By the way....I am glad you are back.

jf [/b]
Hi Jack, I am glad to be back! get online as ogten as I can. Actually I applied for the loan on my own. My husband's name would not be on the title at al. I can afford this house on my own, but it would be tight. I truthfully don't know what the future of my marriage is but to be honest, I have been supportnig the family on my own for 2 years. My husband has been out of work for ages, which is part of what is stressing the relationship. I have alredy told him btw that if h lives in this house with us (If I buyit) he MUST work.

I live in Oklahoma. And as for gardens, i alm already dreaming about it. Here we have lots of flowers and plants. I love gardens!
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www.mizmelody.clubfreestyle.net

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#804028 - 08/18/04 07:52 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Larry Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/01
Posts: 9217
Loc: Deep in Cherokee Country
Melody, I'm proud of you!

My advice (you don't have to take it)..offer them 50K, then work up a little if you need to. There are companies that can jack the house up later when you can afford it and pour concrete underneath to build up the foundation. Save all you can to do that. Later on, have vinyl siding put on it. Other than maybe carpet, don't spend a lot fixing it up until you've got the house set level again. Then take one room at a time, and do any repairs needed. Build that equity!!

Just saw the HUD thing - don't know if you can negotiate on those or not.... won't hurt to ask though....

I agree with the home inspection thing. But unless the house is deemed a disaster - buy it. Buy it as fast as you can. Remember - one good investment is worth years of hard work.....
_________________________
Life isn't measured by the breaths you take. Life is measured by the things that left you breathless

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#804029 - 08/18/04 07:55 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Jack Frost Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/10/03
Posts: 4454
Loc: Maine
It looks like a lovely house and I can imagine the gardens that will grace it. Go for the inspection because there might be things that you can't see that are important. It's worth it. And then buy the house if you like it.

There is nothing like owning your own house and dirt to go with it.

[Sounds like the guy who won't work needs to get lost or get a job. His time is up.]

jf
_________________________
"Make the pie higher." GWB

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#804030 - 08/18/04 07:58 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Jack Frost Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/10/03
Posts: 4454
Loc: Maine
Mel.

I was 41 before I owned a home. The front screen porch looks like it must be wonderful. Go fo it.

jf
_________________________
"Make the pie higher." GWB

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#804031 - 08/18/04 08:00 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Larry Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/01
Posts: 9217
Loc: Deep in Cherokee Country
[Sounds like the guy who won't work needs to get lost or get a job. His time is up.][/b]

I agree with Jack on this one. Don't sit there letting this guy sit around on his butt and do nothing. You're young, and you don't need a man to make you happy. You have your son. There are other men. Whether you buy this house or not, tell him to get a job, it doesn't matter if the job is flipping burgers at McDonalds - get a job, or get out. So you might get a little lonely for awhile.... hey....you've got us!..... ;\)

But buy the house!!
_________________________
Life isn't measured by the breaths you take. Life is measured by the things that left you breathless

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#804032 - 08/18/04 08:07 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Matt G. Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/01
Posts: 3789
Loc: Plainfield, IL
Looks like a fairly typical bungalow for that time period, although the listing shows it just over 1000 sq. ft., which seems a little small for a 3 bedroom house to me. Of course, if you're comfortable in a 500 sq. ft. apartment, then it would feel huge! It looks to be far enough away from the U. that the neighborhood isn't overrun with wild partyers on the weekends. But, it also seems to be the cheapest house for sale in the area, and appears to have been on the market for a while now, so an independent inspection is an absolute must!
_________________________
Sacred cows make the best hamburger. - Clemens

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#804033 - 08/18/04 08:12 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
MizMelody2001 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 230
Loc: USA
There is just something about this house that makes me feel good about it.... I just have to save up the $1800 down and pray that the loan goes through. I'm terrified of the ressponsibilty but I also daydream about having a home (and the dirt below it) of my own. Yes, that porch does look wonderful.... Oh, it's 1065 fet total, plus the porch I think... The third bedroom is tiny, with it's own entrance. (There are 3 entrances in the home.)

It's a hud loan, not a hud home. Don't hud loan inspectors do inspections before approving a loan?
_________________________
www.mizmelody.clubfreestyle.net

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#804034 - 08/18/04 08:14 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Larry Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/01
Posts: 9217
Loc: Deep in Cherokee Country
But, it also seems to be the cheapest house for sale in the area, and appears to have been on the market for a while now, so an independent inspection is an absolute must![/b]

Being the cheapest house for sale in the area is a *good* thing, of course. Also sitting on the market for a while also means there is some negotiating room, another good thing.
_________________________
Life isn't measured by the breaths you take. Life is measured by the things that left you breathless

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#804035 - 08/18/04 08:14 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
MizMelody2001 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 230
Loc: USA
We're in a 2 bedroom duplex right now, but I don't know the square footage....
_________________________
www.mizmelody.clubfreestyle.net

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#804036 - 08/18/04 08:16 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Larry Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/01
Posts: 9217
Loc: Deep in Cherokee Country
Oh... and another thing...... if hubby hasn't worked in two years, tell him to get his ass off your computer, and he can use it when *you're* finished!

Seriously.


I'm so proud of you!....
_________________________
Life isn't measured by the breaths you take. Life is measured by the things that left you breathless

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#804037 - 08/18/04 08:21 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
MizMelody2001 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 230
Loc: USA
 Quote:
Originally posted by Larry:


I'm so proud of you!.... [/b]
Awww....

;\)

Um, why?
_________________________
www.mizmelody.clubfreestyle.net

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#804038 - 08/18/04 08:21 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
JoeB Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/03
Posts: 671
Loc: Northern California
Melody,
I think itís perfectly normal to be scared when buying a first house. I know I was. For most people it turns out very well in the long run. Spending money on a house is not the same as spending on a vacation or a car. In 10 years the house will probably be worth more than it is now. Maybe a whole lot more. In that sense it is an investment. Have you looked at the house? Whether the carpet needs to be replaced now or later depends on your personal taste. Paint is cheap and may not be a top priority. An important consideration is the quality of the schools. This may be the single most important criteria. I like the looks of the house and the front screened porch looks like a great place to sip iced tea of an evening and watch the fireflies. The structural problems (settling or ?) are of some concern. If you were buying that house around here I would definitely suggest a structural engineering report. But you would be paying over $300,000 for it. At $65K, spending a bunch of money to tell you what you already know might not be prudent. Do you have any friends who are smart about buildings? Have them take a look. No house (even a brand new one) is perfect. You do need to be smart about a loan. A 30 year 6.25% loan at $65000 should be about $400 per month. There are people out there that may try to charge a much higher rate. Just say no to them. Add to that property taxes and homeowners insurance to get an idea of monthly costs. It goes without saying that once you go into contract and are applying for the loan, donít buy anything on credit. Itís surprising how often people will go out and buy a new car while waiting for a home loan approval. Your credit is checked again just before funding and that a big red flag to the lender. Let us know the progress of your house buying experience.
_________________________
"How, Monsieur, you care not for music? You do not play the clavecin? I am sorry for you! You are indeed condemming yourself to a dull old age!" - Fouquet

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#804039 - 08/18/04 08:23 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Matt G. Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/01
Posts: 3789
Loc: Plainfield, IL
Sure, a 65K house that is in good shape is better than a 90K house in similar shape. But if the 65K house needs 30K of work to be habitable for more than 5 years, the 90K house is a better deal. At least that's the way I look at it. The price and time on the market indicate that too many others have passed on it for some reason. It's best to know what that reason might be....

(Mel, I am a firm believer in home ownership, even for single people. I'm only playing devil's advocate so you don't get burned on a bum deal.)
_________________________
Sacred cows make the best hamburger. - Clemens

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#804040 - 08/18/04 08:31 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
JBryan Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/19/02
Posts: 9798
Loc: Oklahoma City
 Quote:
Originally posted by JoeB:
If you were buying that house around here I would definitely suggest a structural engineering report. But you would be paying over $300,000 for it. [/b]
You California guys crack me up. \:D

I should show you what 200K buys here.
_________________________
Better to light one small candle than to curse the %&#$@#! darkness.

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#804041 - 08/18/04 08:34 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Larry Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/01
Posts: 9217
Loc: Deep in Cherokee Country
Sure, a 65K house that is in good shape is better than a 90K house in similar shape. But if the 65K house needs 30K of work to be habitable for more than 5 years, the 90K house is a better deal. At least that's the way I look at it. The price and time on the market indicate that too many others have passed on it for some reason. It's best to know what that reason might be....[/b]

Well, I hadn't thought of it that way.... I always try to buy houses *under* the value of its neighbors, since this reflects well on the one I'm buying, as for it sitting for a while, my take on it was the seller would be more motivated. You're correct though that if potential buyers are passing on it it would be good to figure out why.

I'd buy it anyway.
_________________________
Life isn't measured by the breaths you take. Life is measured by the things that left you breathless

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#804042 - 08/18/04 08:36 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
MizMelody2001 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 230
Loc: USA
How can you tell how long it's been on the market? A realtor told me last night it has been on the market for about 90 days (or was it 60?) but I noticed on realtor.com it's listing doesn't say it has central heat and air, or even that it had been refurbished. So, that apparent lacking would have deterred some buyers I think. Plus, this home is in a college town, and people here tend to be wealthier and pickier about homes. BUT I did ask and I'm waiting to hear back from the owner. The realtor shower it twice to another couple and when I asked why they passed on it, he explained that it's a great house for the price and the pass amounted to a woman not thinking the house was "good enough" for her college bound son....

I am kind of afraid if I don't jump that I might not get the house. Homes-esp less expensive ones like this, and with the lovely porch, sell quicky in this town. Homes are in demand here.
_________________________
www.mizmelody.clubfreestyle.net

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#804043 - 08/18/04 08:37 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Larry Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/01
Posts: 9217
Loc: Deep in Cherokee Country
 Quote:
Originally posted by MizMelody2001:
 Quote:
Originally posted by Larry:


I'm so proud of you!.... [/b]
Awww....

;\)

Um, why? [/b]
Because I'm having a conversation with a 33 year old woman who is planning for her and her son's future like a responsible adult.
_________________________
Life isn't measured by the breaths you take. Life is measured by the things that left you breathless

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#804044 - 08/18/04 08:38 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
JoeB Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/03
Posts: 671
Loc: Northern California
 Quote:
You California guys crack me up.

I should show you what 200K buys here.
I visited Norman two months ago on business and thought it looked like a pretty nice place to live. I would have to suspect house prices there are 'normal' for the USA. Here in California house prices have been going straight up for 4 years now. Why? Who knows? But whatever goes up .....
_________________________
"How, Monsieur, you care not for music? You do not play the clavecin? I am sorry for you! You are indeed condemming yourself to a dull old age!" - Fouquet

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#804045 - 08/18/04 08:40 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
Larry Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/01
Posts: 9217
Loc: Deep in Cherokee Country
I am kind of afraid if I don't jump that I might not get thehouse. Homes-esp less expensive ones like this, and with the lovely porch, sell quicky in this town. Homes are in demand here.[/b]

Jump Melody, jump!!!
_________________________
Life isn't measured by the breaths you take. Life is measured by the things that left you breathless

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#804046 - 08/18/04 08:43 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
JoeB Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/03
Posts: 671
Loc: Northern California
 Quote:
Well, I hadn't thought of it that way.... I always try to buy houses *under* the value of its neighbors, since this reflects well on the one I'm buying
Good advice. Also you are less likely to overimprove the house (put money into it that doesn't add to the eventual selling price).

 Quote:
I am kind of afraid if I don't jump that I might not get thehouse. Homes-esp less expensive ones like this, and with the lovely porch, sell quicky in this town. Homes are in demand here.
Then don't wait too long. Make an offer.
_________________________
"How, Monsieur, you care not for music? You do not play the clavecin? I am sorry for you! You are indeed condemming yourself to a dull old age!" - Fouquet

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#804047 - 08/18/04 08:48 PM Re: I'm thinking of buying a house : Advice please
netizen Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/02/01
Posts: 1926
Loc: New York
Strangely enough, I just bought a small place in upstate NY (in the finger lake regions, a great place to get away to).

Two things I view as essential: An inspection and a lawyer ==in that order. OK you can skip the lawyer if you want, but.....

Have an inspection done. This is essential. What you, a realtor, or a friend (knowledgeable or not) think about the house is no replacement for getting a qualified evaluation of the house. It's money well spent. In fact, I'd be very surprised that HUD would go forward without requiring inspection.

Realtors should be able to tell you exactly how long it's been on the market.

I would not be pressured, no matter how bad you want a house, into buying one. Period.

A couple of links and possible contacts you might want to check out:


LINK - Home Buyers

OK HUD LINK

Good luck.

N.
_________________________
"To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that
we are to stand by the president right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public."-- Theodore Roosevelt

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