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Is a Home That Needs Work Damaged Goods or Good Investment?

Is a Home That Needs Work Damaged Goods or Good Investment?
April 20, 2020 Greg Word

Is a Home That Needs Work Damaged Goods or Good Investment?

So, you’ve found your dream home? But after the inspection, your worst nightmare has come true: It has significant damage that you didn’t see when you made the offer. Does this mean you have to walk away from the place you thought would be your forever home? Maybe not. Keep reading for information on the different types of issues you might find and how to negotiate repairs so that you can make a smart decision.

Structural Issues

A home’s foundation is one of its most important features. If it is compromised, you can guarantee that your budget is, too. Look for a trusted structural engineer for expert advice on whether the home can be saved or if you are better off saving your money. You can expect to pay between $300 and $500 for an evaluation. Depending on what they find, repairs may be a few thousand dollars to $50,000 or more. It is then up to you to decide if it is worth pursuing.

Roof Damage

The foundation supports your home from the bottom, while the roof protects it from the top. Your home inspector can let you know if the house you are planning to buy has incurred damage from wind, hail, or neglect. If they suspect problems, Restructure Corporation can go into greater detail, and you can schedule a free consultation that includes a thorough roof assessment, advice on material selection, and professional and courteous service. Your estimator can put a dollar figure on the damage, and you may be able to negotiate the cost of repairs with the seller. If the damage was caused by a storm, the seller’s insurance may cover it.

Exterior Paint

Storms can cause damage to more than just the roof, and a property’s exterior paint can be chipped and damaged beyond the need for a simple touchup. While there is some painting that you can handle on your own, such as handrails on the porch or ground-floor window boxes, extensive damage should be evaluated and repaired by a professional. They will have the right tools and know-how to properly plan and prepare for the job. Cost for exterior painting on an average-sized home — between 1,500 and 2,500 square feet — comes in anywhere from $632 up to $6,200. If your home is made of brick, you may be on the higher end of that spectrum. A three-story home can actually be much more expensive, costing $10,000 or more.

Flood and Fire Damage

Of all the possible damage scenarios, flood and fire may be the most expensive to rectify. Water damage lasts well beyond its initial impact and can result in toxic mold growth that may not be detected by a home inspection. Similarly, fire damage can leave lingering issues, and both must be taken care of by a water or fire damage restoration company. The cost to repair these types of issues is figured on a case by case basis.

Let the Negotiations Began

Even if you’ve made an offer on a home, you can continue to negotiate on price up until closing. Any damage found during the inspection is a reasonable cause for a revised offer. Before contacting your agent to change your offer, make sure that you have repair quotes in hand. You’ll also want to know the timeline for repairs; that way, you can negotiate even further if you will have to rent something short-term until the home is livable. The buyer, of course, has the right to reject your proposal or counter with their own vision of what’s fair.

The best piece of advice is this: Don’t buy a house where you don’t feel comfortable with its condition or what it will take to make it a safe and healthy home for your entire family. Also, don’t count out properties that need work, because they can be a significant cost savings and help you enter into homeownership with equity.