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Old 09-03-2007, 09:42 PM
 
Location: Helotes, TX
136 posts, read 397,992 times
Reputation: 43

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My husband and I looked at a house in a very old sub-division off Bandera Road inside 1604 today. It is on a larger lot (between 1/2 and 1 acre),
with well and septic. The house is 33 years old, and in really good shape. The yard is well manicured and has lots of oak trees and a large circular drive. However, the house is very dated. The wallpaper was orange, yellow or green, from the 70's. The appliances were original '70's and were gold color, as well as yellow laminate counter tops. Even looked like the carpet was original gold sculpture carpet. The master bath has a Roman tub/shower
combo. The A/C units may need to be replaced. Not sure of the condition of electrical or furnace as we did not look that far. The rooms are very boxy
and it is not an open house. There is limited closet space in the smaller bedrooms.

We currently live in a one year old house in an upscale gated sub-division. The back of our one-story house looks like a two story. On our deck, we can see into the back yards of 9 other houses. I really like our current new house, but would like more privacy, and a bigger garage, which this older house has. There are larger resell homes in our sub-division, but they are out of our price range.

The older house list price is about $280,000 or so. The tax appraisal is $202,000. Would you give up a new house for a older 70's ranch? How do you reach an offer price on a house that is so out of date? Would we have a hard time selling a 53 year old house on propane, well, septic, but in the city in 20 years?

Your thoughts would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Joli
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Old 09-04-2007, 09:38 AM
 
Location: Johns Island, SC
797 posts, read 2,744,673 times
Reputation: 1092
I say go for it! That is if the bones of the place are actually in good shape and the lot is over 1/2 acre. I too would like the option for more privacy and a decent sized lot with out moving out to the boonies. If you plan to update and upgrade reselling in the future probably won't be an issue.
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Old 09-04-2007, 09:49 AM
 
781 posts, read 3,537,843 times
Reputation: 281
***The older house list price is about $280,000 or so. The tax appraisal is $202,000.****


Just FYI...the taxes will reset when/if you the buy the house. Best to check what the tax rate is in the county and if there are dual county taxes.
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Old 09-04-2007, 10:25 AM
Rockin' The TriCities
 
n/a posts
I think it sounds like a nice house. You would be surprised at how relatively easy it would be to open up the floor plan a little bit. I'm not a big fan of the modern trend for open floor plans and great rooms and kitchens that are open to the rest of the house, but I do like the living areas to have a sense of flow to them - sometimes knocking down a wall or two, or adding an arch can make a difference.

And of course, once you de-Harvest Gold and Avocado Green the place, it will look totally different.

I say go for it, especially because you won't have to worry about the neighbours accidentally getting a good peek into your house.
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Old 09-04-2007, 11:25 AM
 
260 posts, read 1,034,548 times
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We opted for the same thing. Our house was built in the 80's, but the nice established neighborhood has been great, and it's wonderful having all of those mature trees around! And besides, retro is in...

Wallpaper and carpet are minor considerations - they are easy to change without very much money (considering the overall price of the house) and some small changes there make a big difference in the feel of a home.

As for price negotiation, a realtor can pull "comps" from the area - price per square foot averages for the area you are buying in. That should give you a good ballpark to work with on actual market value. I don't think you'll have much trouble selling... there might be a little less of a market for well / septic system dependency, but a large lot size will overcome that part of it. As people get pushed into smaller and smaller lots in all of the new development, those big lots are going to look more and more impressive.
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Old 09-04-2007, 01:32 PM
 
Location: Wiesbaden, Germany
13,807 posts, read 26,358,843 times
Reputation: 3989
if they still have original appliances then you need to think of what else is old, like the a/c, water heater, heater, windows etc.. a coworker just put in a new a/c system in his house which is about that age and it was $8K..

I think you need to seriously look at how much it's going to cost you to buy this older house and be realistic. Add up everything you're going to replace and I think that $280K will quickly become closer to $350K...
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Old 09-04-2007, 07:56 PM
940
 
13,789 posts, read 7,325,880 times
Reputation: 6870
I say go for it...a house on almost 1 acre inside 1604 will eventually be so desirable once all available land is spoken for and platted with tiny lots. You're also in an established neighborhood with full grown trees and very good schools. Upscale shopping is close too...I'd jump at the chance but that's me.
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Old 09-04-2007, 09:24 PM
 
Location: Helotes, TX
136 posts, read 397,992 times
Reputation: 43
Default Obtained more info

Thanks to everyone for your words of encouragement.

I saw the sellers disclosure today. Interesting information such as the
septic is 33 years old: ouch! Being a 1970's house, it said there was
lead based paint. The biggest red flag is past termite problems, although
the inspection in July did not find any. This was a retirmement house
for a retired couple and the widow has lived alone in the house for 20 years.
It is really well kept. Like someone else said, there will probably be a lot of
things that need to be replaced. I am trying to be realistic on the price
and upgrades. Another house in the neighborhood sold in August for $30k
less, was a few years older and has upgraded equipment. I just estimated
replacing the builtin applicances could run $3500.00.

We are still waiting for answers to lots of our questions. There is
no HOA in this neighborhood which we really like.

Will keep you posted.

Thanks,
Joli
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Old 09-05-2007, 09:30 AM
 
4,796 posts, read 13,746,414 times
Reputation: 2710
Septic tank, lead based paint and termite history.....tread carefully. All the rest is pretty standard upgrades for a house that age. These three could cost you later if you want to re-sell.

Also....do NOT sign a "mold" waiver. Mold is not always discovered during the inspection.
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Old 09-05-2007, 06:32 PM
 
Location: Wiesbaden, Germany
13,807 posts, read 26,358,843 times
Reputation: 3989
additional FYI: I had a guy come over today with an estimate for a new a/c system and it was almost $11K for both inside and outside, 5 ton, 16 SEER, and dual stage compressor. I would think an older house would probably need one of them and that's for an up to 3000 sf house. anything bigger is going to require two systems..
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