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Old 06-10-2014, 09:39 AM
 
13 posts, read 13,368 times
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Ask yourself this question. "Can I sell it next month for more than I bought it for?" Don't buy a house till you can answer yes. In this case it seems the fixer-upper is the better buy.
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Old 06-10-2014, 10:39 AM
 
16,719 posts, read 17,103,321 times
Reputation: 41351
Quote:
Originally Posted by jerseygal4u View Post
For me,it comes down to this.

I want to keep my monthly payments low,at around $1200/month,but as this is Jersey,they do not come hand in hand. Of 1200 taxes will surely eat away 1/2 my monthly budget for a home.

So i could either choose the beautiful home in the nice part of an extremely crime ridden city(the neighborhood itself is ok) or a run down shack in a nice town.

Which would you guys choose

Is posting addresses allowed?
The beautiful home will lose its worth because the crime will eventually encroach on you.

The ramshackle house can be leveled and you could rebuild in the nice neighborhood.

This seems like a no-brainer to me.
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Old 06-10-2014, 11:50 AM
 
Location: Over yonder a piece
4,088 posts, read 5,449,605 times
Reputation: 6618
Good neighborhood. Would never consider bad neighborhood even if the house was beautiful and pristine. You can fix up a bad house. But you can't fix up a bad neighborhood (well, you can, but it will take a lot longer).
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Old 06-10-2014, 12:01 PM
 
Location: Dallas
6,234 posts, read 5,891,829 times
Reputation: 18974
Have to chime in with the good neighborhood. It's not worth having a beautiful home where you can't feel that you or your belongings are safe.
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Old 06-10-2014, 12:02 PM
 
8,517 posts, read 12,286,183 times
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Good house in a bad city but ok neighborhood:

212 Mercer St. Trenton, NJ

Bad shack in a great town:
129 Erickson Ave.
Moorestown, Nj
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Old 06-10-2014, 12:23 PM
 
Location: Berkeley Neighborhood, Denver, CO USA
16,289 posts, read 24,945,276 times
Reputation: 28627
Default better town

129 Errickson Ave, Moorestown, NJ 08057 is For Sale - Zillow
taxes are $300/mo
on the market forever - you can probably shave some more off
I am guessing that the seller is upside down - could be tricky
lot size - 7K sqft, decent


212 Mercer St, Trenton, NJ 08611 is For Sale - Zillow
taxes are $440/mo
on the market forever - you can probably shave some more off
built in 1814 - a giant money pit, be prepared
Trenton - "wretched hive of scum and villainy"
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Old 06-10-2014, 12:53 PM
 
16,719 posts, read 17,103,321 times
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So obviously you're going on price only, because those two homes are about as different as you can get.

One is a tiny bungalow and the other is a 3-story behemoth which has been on the market for 2 years, probably because it's falling down.
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Old 06-10-2014, 01:24 PM
 
Location: Holly Springs
3,966 posts, read 10,191,253 times
Reputation: 3190
Much easier to fix a house than a whole neighborhood.
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Old 06-10-2014, 02:03 PM
 
Location: Saint Paul, MN
1,365 posts, read 1,669,065 times
Reputation: 2979
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann Arbor Non-golfer View Post
Ask yourself this question. "Can I sell it next month for more than I bought it for?" Don't buy a house till you can answer yes. In this case it seems the fixer-upper is the better buy.
Thank you for stopping by, Human Incarnation of the Real Estate Bubble! Yikes! I consider myself to be a polite person, but I have to say--what the h*ll kind of advice is that? The last thing we need in a still-unstable market is more housing speculation. Investors can/should/do buy property because they think it will be worth more later. Individuals purchasing a single-family home should do so because it provides for their housing needs better than alternative options (due to price, stability, privacy, etc.)

OP: I don't think any of us have enough information to offer too much truly insightful advice. There are just so many factors in play. Some thoughts:

-Just how bad is the area around the nice house? Would you feel safe there? Are the crimes mostly property crime or violent offenses? If violent, is the violence largely confined to players in illegal enterprise (drug gangs, for example), or is the general public at risk of being targeted?

-Just how much of a "shack" is the house in the nice town? Does it fit what you consider to be your minimum needs? Are there enough beds/baths/etc to fit how you intend to use the residence? Is there structural damage that will be expensive and difficult to fix, or is it just a matter of unappealing finishes or floor plan?

-What is the outlook for each location? Neighborhoods can trend up or down. Is the "bad" city gentrifying, or is it in a general decline? How about the good neighborhood? Is it stable, or on its way in one direction or the other?

-How does each location fit into your life? Would you have a reasonable commute from both houses? How about shopping? Does the bad area have the sort of grocery/household goods stores that you want, or is it a "food desert." Are your friends or social activities more or less accessible from either place?

I am sure there are a thousand other things to take into consideration, but those are the questions that immediately jumped to mind.
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Old 06-10-2014, 02:52 PM
 
Location: SLC, UT
1,571 posts, read 2,561,516 times
Reputation: 3906
Good neighborhood. You can update the house over time, but you can't "update" the neighborhood.

EDIT: With the two choices you posted, I actually prefer the "shack." I like that there's some land, I think it's a cute house, and I can see that if it were cleaned up, given a couple coats of paint, and decorated nicely, it could look really cute inside without putting in a lot of money. Down the line, update the floors (or do that right away, if you can afford to), update the kitchen, and look at the layout for a possible additional 1/2 bath. And the whole time, you'll feel safer being in a nice neighborhood. Oh, and the schools are much nicer, which will be good for resale.
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