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Old 08-14-2019, 08:31 AM
 
Location: O'Hara Twp.
4,249 posts, read 6,062,521 times
Reputation: 1550

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Quote:
Originally Posted by noblerare View Post
Hi, I am a first-time homebuyer and I need some advice as to how to determine whether or not a house is a good house.

I look at listings on Redfin or Zillow and have a hard time differentiating between the average ones and the truly great ones.

I find myself getting caught up in things like wallpaper, counters, or whether or not this appliance exists or not.

I think I know to focus more on the foundation, condition of the basement, and roof but I don't know how to do that practically.

Is there any advice or resources that you all can point me to to increase my knowledge on figuring out if a home is worth looking at/buying?

Most of the advice you have been given involves looking at a house in person. It seems as if you want to weed out some houses based on their online listing. Not sure if this is possible. Online, I think the way to do it is to just focus on price. If it is a reasonable price then go and look at it. Unfortunately, you can't wait long with homes in today's market.


I do think you need a realtor to help you along the way. Not every realtor is the same. Most importantly not every realtor know the area that you are interested. Pick a realtor that works in your area of interest and make sure the realtor is a full time realtor.



Good luck.
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Old Yesterday, 06:23 AM
 
Location: Wexford PA / Clear Lake TX
8,239 posts, read 27,218,527 times
Reputation: 4532
The old adage "You get what you pay for" certainly applies. If you want something of decent quality or "move in ready" the prices will reflect that. I think there is good advice in here on what major items to look for, and how the inspection process works. My experience with inspections is they are 20 pages long and will nitpick at things on a house that is perfectly sound. If you can get over that hump, there are a couple other things that I would be concerned with, namely insurance and taxes. Seems there are many houses around $300k here that would check fine but insurers either won't touch it unless the roof is replaced or will exclude roof coverage which will cause problems with your bank. Property taxes also vary wildly depending on city/town so that's worth digging into as well. Finally, take your time & don't rush. If you look at desirable parts of the city & desirable suburbs, there are many, many houses that have been on the market for months, some even pushing 1 year.
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Old Yesterday, 08:26 PM
 
525 posts, read 207,252 times
Reputation: 209
Quote:
Originally Posted by guy2073 View Post
Never ever use the realtors inspector. I am not a fan of home inspectors in general but a realtors inspector has an interest in the closing going through without a hitch.

Well I guess I will comment on this first. I've been out of town the last week for our 25th Anniversary. I dont think I have ever worked with an inspector whose point was to make sure the closing went through without a hitch. The inspection is another negotiating point for a buyer if something is found and most any agent wants a good inspection done. That inspector has a liability to their client and if they miss something major guess who the first person any agent is going to tell a client to talk to? Before we were agents, we had a home inspection done on our home 15 years ago and the inspector missed termites. My first call was to that inspector who ended up treating our entire home at his cost.


Bottom line, no not everyone needs an inspector if you feel comfortable doing all the checks an inspector would but most people do not. I'd always recommend one and I do recommend certain ones who I know are thorough and explain things well to buyers. To be fair it is possible some agents/brokers get benefits from using a specific home inspector (or various other services) but they are required to disclose that. We get nothing from anyone we recommend, just people we know will do a good, timely job.
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Old Yesterday, 08:36 PM
 
525 posts, read 207,252 times
Reputation: 209
Quote:
Originally Posted by robrobrob View Post
Most of the advice you have been given involves looking at a house in person. It seems as if you want to weed out some houses based on their online listing. Not sure if this is possible. Online, I think the way to do it is to just focus on price. If it is a reasonable price then go and look at it. Unfortunately, you can't wait long with homes in today's market.


I do think you need a realtor to help you along the way. Not every realtor is the same. Most importantly not every realtor know the area that you are interested. Pick a realtor that works in your area of interest and make sure the realtor is a full time realtor.

Good luck.

Yeah it is possible but it is hard to do from a distance. We just helped a family move from MA to Pgh with several face time showings to determine if anything was worth coming out to see. In the end with this market they ended up putting in an offer to get the home then came out during the inspection to see it for their 1st time as we had plenty of options to get out if needed. I am not sure why you think it is a distance though?
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Old Today, 06:13 AM
 
Location: Atlanta
195 posts, read 48,393 times
Reputation: 133
In most cases, an inspection is a wise decision. Yes, most homes of any age have various issues and it might get over used as a negotiating tactic, but at the same time, buyers are more aware of what they are getting into, financially and otherwise. Sometimes things are found and a buyer just might not want the house knowing and for good reason.
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Old Today, 08:55 AM
 
525 posts, read 207,252 times
Reputation: 209
I agree, the only real downside is the $400-500 you pay. Its a small price for the largest investment most people will make. Inspectors always find something and at worst you find out all the potential things you should plan for down the road even if not an issue now. Unless I was a contractor I would opt for one. It also gives you more time to consider your purchase and potentially back out. Maybe there are issues and that gives you a chance to resolve them now or get the home for a lower price. We've had several back out after an inspection, some finding something they dont want to deal with and some others simply had a change of heart (either not wanting to buy or wanting something else).


I am sure there are some Agents who are short sighted and simply want the current deal to go through. Personally my wife and I would rather a client back out due to the home inspection, the client may never end up buying but I would rather someone talking positive about us to friends/family making nothing for our work than them feeling resentful of how we acted to make a few thousand and talking bad about us.
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