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Old 11-05-2008, 11:14 PM
 
Location: Bend, OR
3,033 posts, read 5,014,209 times
Reputation: 2920

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My husband and I are looking into purchasing a home that was built in 1961. It's a foreclosure and is priced to sell. However, it still looks as though the home is from 1961. It has a great floorplan, for the most part, but would need a complete remodel. The home appears to have carpet of wood floors, which could be really nice and save us some big money, since the carpet is trashed.

I have a vision to open up the kitchen into the main living area of the home. This would require relocating the refrigerator and tearing down a wall. I'm not sure whether it has a load supporting beam, but I imagine we could work with it or relocate if we have to.

We would have to redo the bathrooms, as well as add another bathroom to the master bed. We would also open up that room to a room in the garage, so that we would have a master suite.

We could probably afford to spend around $80-$100K on the remodel. We also could do some of the work ourselves (finishing floors, tiling, demolition), and would contract out for the major work.

Does this seem feasible to do within our budget? I know it's difficult without looking at the house, but what does an "average" remodel job cost? I've seen the "Flip this House" type shows where they can spend as little as $20K and as high as $200K+. I do know that similar homes we have been looking at for a remodel are priced almost $50K more. Also, remodeled homes that are move in ready in this neighborhood are costing almost $150K more.
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Old 11-05-2008, 11:30 PM
 
Location: Kennewick, WA
244 posts, read 656,466 times
Reputation: 304
Well, we spent about 3 yrs remodeling our house and we did EVERYTHING ourselves. We gutted and redid both bathrooms; tile in entry way; converted our one car garage into a master bedroom complete with sheetrock, carpet, closet, lights; we gutted our kitchen, knocked down 2 walls and reconfigured the sink, stove and fridge to better locations, took out a door and made a new wall; dining room we took out a window and put in a sliding glass door; redid our basement, knocked down a wall, took down the false ceiling and put up sheetrock, recessed lights, hardwood floors, a built in computer desk for 2 computers; a partial fence w/double gate in our yard....That's all I can think of for now. We probably spent about 15k doing it all ourselves. I think we spent even less, but my husband is adding in the new hot water heater and heat pump that we had to put in one year, too. That was about 7k right there. So, if you know how to do the work...I've heard that you can save about 70% on LABOR!!! It might take you 6 months to do the kitchen, but it'll be sooooo worth it in the end! Good luck!
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Old 11-05-2008, 11:36 PM
 
Location: Knoxville
3,354 posts, read 10,976,462 times
Reputation: 3372
I guess the first question would be, if you put $100K into it, will you get a return on investment.
Are houses selling in the area?

So much depends on what you are putting into the house, meaning the quality of the fixtures, etc.
Does the house need a roof?
Does it need a new HVAC system.
Does it need to be re-plumbed?
Is there any hidden damage that needs to be repaired? This is the $$$$ that no one sees, and is usually considered "wasted money. When I say wasted, I mean it is money that HAS to go into fixing something that is not seen or noticed. Like fixing a foundation problem.

You could spend $100K on a kitchen and a couple bathrooms easy. You could also re-do the entire house. But there will be a big difference in the quality of what is there.

You have to determine what the market is, what it will bear, what kind of profit you want to make, and then see if all of the numbers add up to the same number (budget).

Last edited by Barking Spider; 11-05-2008 at 11:52 PM.. Reason: spelling
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Old 11-05-2008, 11:39 PM
 
3,020 posts, read 16,731,707 times
Reputation: 2442
Default Who knows what an "Average Remodel" costs.......

Jesus I should get back in the business. I could be rich over night.

The stuff you are talking is really chump change in general if you are just moving walls around, lil drywall work, painting, etc. The bathrooms a bit more depending on what you are doing.

A complete makeover for a bath, nothing super fancy, I've done them for $15 for a full bath and made very nice profits. My actual costs material wise maybe $3K, it can be all over the lot depending on what is used material wise but it doesn't typical cost all that much.

Messing around with an interior, if you are not getting heavy into utilities like wiring, heating - cooling, plumbing is really very cheap to do. If you are paying for labor, that adds to the cost but any experienced crew should be able to knock it out quick. Few thousand should buy a lot of stuff. If you are not redoing things like windows, doors, stairs, where are they getting all the expense? Sounds like somebody is getting ripped big time.

$150K for a remodel sounds like from a different planet, maybe a sign of the times. I just completely redid my present house, pretty much a total redo, new full bath, new kitchen, all the interior, new wiring, plumbing, heating, all new windows / doors for like $10K. Course that was me doing all the labor, except for some heating and carpet work.

Who knows what it should cost you. I doubt you would be getting anywhere close to $80-100K of value. Gees, they build complete new houses in SE Ohio with the right folks for ~$30K (plus what they pay for the land and maybe a wee bit more for some utility work to get it to the house.)

Sounds like a bit of brainwashing has been done. Maybe very inefficient methods used, maybe the paperwork / fees / some gross profit margins. They sure do not pay the hired help a living wage any more, figure out where money goes. I would say you folks in those situations are getting ripped good.
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Old 11-06-2008, 06:55 AM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
1,652 posts, read 4,972,261 times
Reputation: 887
The amount of money depends on what you want to do and what you want the house to look like when it's finished.

When my partner and I remodeled our last house, we put about 250K into it. We put on a brand new roof, we removed the siding and had the entire house done in brick. That was one of the largest costs. Brand new kitchen. All new hardwoods, carpet, staircase.
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Old 11-06-2008, 08:45 AM
 
Location: At the lake house in sunny Florida
16,159 posts, read 16,302,189 times
Reputation: 73321
My dh and I have remodeled many houses over the years. For just a basic re-model of bathrooms, kitchen, floors, and walls you should be able to do it for about 5-10k doing the work yourselves. Those were basic, neat, clean, and neutral re-models. Nothing extreme. We found that our highest return on our invest was not doing the high end stuff. We made more money that way.

Factors to consider:
Inspections. If you start doing a re-model what inspections are required? Will the county make you upgrade the electrical in the whole house etc.? That is something that could be very costly.

Roof, A/C, Windows, Structure. These are expensive items if you need to fix.

Can you do a home inspection? I think it is very important for anyone that can't do "all" the work themselves to have a home inspection done.


Basically if the bones of the house are good, you stick with re-modeling and not demolition you should be able to stay within your budget. Also if you plan on staying in this house for a long time I would not spend a lot on the kitchen and baths doing the trendy stuff. By the time you sell it those high end kitchen and baths that are 10 years old will need to be upgraded.

Foreclosures can be very scary if you are not knowledgeable. Pretty much you can lose your a.. So be very careful. Make sure you get a termite inspection, home inspection, and a Title Search dated for the "day you close"(otherwise leins can still be put on that house).

Good luck. Houses are usually never as cut and dry as you think. Do your research!!
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Old 11-06-2008, 08:56 AM
 
Location: Montrose, CA
3,031 posts, read 5,702,701 times
Reputation: 1840
I did the house I'm living in now, complete overhaul except for foundation and roof. Wiring, plumbing, complete gutting of kitchen and bath, drywall, fixtures, new windows/doors, etc. You name it, I redid it. Did all the work myself except for upgrading the house power line. For a 1000 sq ft 2br/1ba house it ended up being about $20k and I didn't skimp on quality. I did take my time shopping around for deals though, so that takes time and effort to accomplish. I don't think I paid full price for any materials I put into it.
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Old 11-06-2008, 10:46 AM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan and Sometimes Orange County CA
15,819 posts, read 32,609,081 times
Reputation: 11883
We have done this a few times. Most recently was a major makeover of a large house that we moved from a different location. A lot depends on the choices that you make. We restore older homes we do not "renovate" them. That actually costs more. Here are some examples of costs for our recent restoration effort on a home with about 5,000 s.f. of living space:

Plumbing - Supply lines of pex. Waste lines of PVC except vertical stacks that pass through common areas there we used cast iron becuase PVC vertical stacks are very noisey. You can insulate them to dampen the noise, but it does not help much. We used a very laarge tankless water heater. We have four bathrooms plus, a kitchen with two sinks and a dishwasher, and an outside shower. The cost was $14,0000 not including fixtures (faucets, sinks, shower valves and heads, appliances etc). This price included a sewage pit and pump for a basement bathroom.

Roofing. All new plywood (I would not allow flakeboard) and 50 Year architectural composite shingles (we wanted lifetime "Shangles" from Certainteed, but the cost was too high). All new flashing and two solartube skylights $15,000.

Electrical - 200 amp main panel and a 100 amp panel for the backup generator. Another 100 amp panel in the garage (carriage house). I did much of the wiring myself. I did all of the finish work (installing outlets, switches and light fixtures). I replaced all of the old wiring that was not readily accessible, because I did not trust a contractor to minimize damage to the old part of the house. They do it the most efficient way and put holes everywhere. I did it the least efficient way, but made almost no holes. The wire alone cost about $3,000. We installed a back up generator that cost arond $3,000. A contractor did the service entrance and wired some parts of the house at a cost of $4,500. Another contractor did some other parts of the house and the carriage house on a Time and Materials basis. My guess is that that work cost about $4,000 - $6,000 more. You will probably not need a new service entrance. If you do nto need a new panel, you will save a ton. you may not even need new wiring. If it is copper wire and grounded, there is no reason to replace it. In that case the cost will be negligible. We also had to instal a hard wired smoke detector system. See if you can talk your building inspector into the new wireless communicating smoke detector system with ten year batteries.

Refinish floors $1.75 - $2.25 per square foot, depening on the finish material used. I do nto recommend trying this yourself unless you are extremely physically fit and have no lower back problems.

HVAC. - We went with hot water heat and antique radiators. We used a very high end super efficient Lochinvar Knight boiler (that breaks down constantly - choose a different brand). We ducted for AC for a space pack system. A forced air system would have cost around $12,000. We paid around $20,000. Radiated heat in the floors was quoted at $50,000. The AC unit (which we do not have) costs about $6,000, installed. You can reduce that cost considerably if you already have ducting. A new furnace/Ac unit should not cost more than $3,000 - $5,000 if you can live with forced air.

Walls. We repaired plaster where we could. Where we could not, we used 5/8" commercial drywall (it is similar to plaster in strength and sound dampening qualities). All said and done it ran about $20,000. I cannot say how many square feet we had done. It was abot 60% of the house needed plaster repair or drywall.

Structural work. This will vary. Get an assessment up front so you know what you are looking at.

Paint and wallpaper. This was a shock. I budgeted $2000 expecting to do the work myself. That would have taken 20 years. The cost ended up closer to $40,000.

Be sure to budget for drainage system around the foundation if you need it.

Exterior paint - we have very old cedar siging wiht about 30 coats of paint. It needs so much prep work that painting it is beyon the realm of practicality. I am slowly stripping it myself. The best quote that we were given to prep and paint was $50,000! Forget that!

Micellaneous doors, hardware, light fixtures, plumbing fixtures. This dpends on what you use. If you like that junk from Home depot that you will find in everyone else's house, than this should only cost you a few thousand dollars. If you go with period refurbished or quality reproduction fixtures, then it gets very expensive.

Insualtion - surprisingly cheap. $5,500 to top off the insulation in the old part of the house. (But then they did nto really do the work. They just sprayed in material ont he ground to make it look like they did). However we had several quotes for about the same price. so this was a good price, just a bad company. We used Icynene in the attic. It is very expensive, but an excellent insulation.

Landscapeing. Are you kidding me? We have no money left for landscaping.




Do nto forget to include The cost of money (construction loans have higher interst rates), insurance, permits (surprisingly expensive), Any necessary utility work.
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Old 11-06-2008, 11:40 AM
 
Location: Bend, OR
3,033 posts, read 5,014,209 times
Reputation: 2920
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cosmic View Post
Jesus I should get back in the business. I could be rich over night.

The stuff you are talking is really chump change in general if you are just moving walls around, lil drywall work, painting, etc. The bathrooms a bit more depending on what you are doing.

A complete makeover for a bath, nothing super fancy, I've done them for $15 for a full bath and made very nice profits. My actual costs material wise maybe $3K, it can be all over the lot depending on what is used material wise but it doesn't typical cost all that much.

Messing around with an interior, if you are not getting heavy into utilities like wiring, heating - cooling, plumbing is really very cheap to do. If you are paying for labor, that adds to the cost but any experienced crew should be able to knock it out quick. Few thousand should buy a lot of stuff. If you are not redoing things like windows, doors, stairs, where are they getting all the expense? Sounds like somebody is getting ripped big time.

$150K for a remodel sounds like from a different planet, maybe a sign of the times. I just completely redid my present house, pretty much a total redo, new full bath, new kitchen, all the interior, new wiring, plumbing, heating, all new windows / doors for like $10K. Course that was me doing all the labor, except for some heating and carpet work.

Who knows what it should cost you. I doubt you would be getting anywhere close to $80-100K of value. Gees, they build complete new houses in SE Ohio with the right folks for ~$30K (plus what they pay for the land and maybe a wee bit more for some utility work to get it to the house.)

Sounds like a bit of brainwashing has been done. Maybe very inefficient methods used, maybe the paperwork / fees / some gross profit margins. They sure do not pay the hired help a living wage any more, figure out where money goes. I would say you folks in those situations are getting ripped good.
Thanks for the information. Maybe you misunderstood my original post though. I haven't received any quotes yet for the work. I'm just looking for a real ballpark figure so I know whether to even consider making an offer on this house.

I do think the market here would be beneficial for the remodel, even though we aren't planning on selling the home after we are done with the work. We want to live in for the long haul! Homes in the same neighborhood that have been completely remodeled are going for over $100K more.

While we can do some of the work, we will need to hire out also. Our budget allows us up to $100K for remodeling, but we of course are hoping to spend far less than that!

We are going to have to put new windows in the home, but don't know about the rest. If we are talking about plumping and electricity (I don't think we are), then we won't buy the house. We will definately be getting an inspection!!!
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Old 11-06-2008, 11:47 AM
 
Location: Bend, OR
3,033 posts, read 5,014,209 times
Reputation: 2920
Quote:
Originally Posted by younglisa7 View Post
My dh and I have remodeled many houses over the years. For just a basic re-model of bathrooms, kitchen, floors, and walls you should be able to do it for about 5-10k doing the work yourselves. Those were basic, neat, clean, and neutral re-models. Nothing extreme. We found that our highest return on our invest was not doing the high end stuff. We made more money that way.

Factors to consider:
Inspections. If you start doing a re-model what inspections are required? Will the county make you upgrade the electrical in the whole house etc.? That is something that could be very costly.

Roof, A/C, Windows, Structure. These are expensive items if you need to fix.

Can you do a home inspection? I think it is very important for anyone that can't do "all" the work themselves to have a home inspection done.


Basically if the bones of the house are good, you stick with re-modeling and not demolition you should be able to stay within your budget. Also if you plan on staying in this house for a long time I would not spend a lot on the kitchen and baths doing the trendy stuff. By the time you sell it those high end kitchen and baths that are 10 years old will need to be upgraded.

Foreclosures can be very scary if you are not knowledgeable. Pretty much you can lose your a.. So be very careful. Make sure you get a termite inspection, home inspection, and a Title Search dated for the "day you close"(otherwise leins can still be put on that house).

Good luck. Houses are usually never as cut and dry as you think. Do your research!!
Thanks for the information on county inspections. Fortunately we don't have termites in this part of the country, so we don't have to deal with that!

Also, the tips of the kitchen are a good point to consider. I have a vision of a very modern kitchen, but I will have to weigh that with what is really best for the situation.

We will certainly get a home inspection. There's no way I would go into this type of project blindly. We just have too much at stake!
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