What I'm Seeing Now

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Welcome Home!

I knew this was going to be an interesting inspection when the realtor contacted me to say it would!

She is someone who means what she says, and knowing her as I do, I believed her!

Getting to the inspection early I took a quick walk around and this is what greeted me at the front door!

I thought, "Welcome home!"

The porch top is cracked, with overgrowth through and all around.  The stoop is sagging, as is the front step. It certainly needs total replacement.

I think this door wasn't used much!

The buyer is no dummy.  She has specific things in mind that she is looking for and seemed mostly unfazed by what we discovered during the inspection.  And we discovered a lot!

She is very circumspect too, leaving no stone unturned!

Her search was basically on line, with her realtor's input and advice.

She came from out of the country for the home inspection, stayed a couple of days and then returned.

The house is old, minimally cared for, and will have to be renovated.  That can be done piecemeal as it is basically habitable.

Not every client can look past the remodeling needed, and can plan the steps necessary to bring the house into a more comfortable and modern condition.  Virtually everything in the house will need to be improved or remodeled.

I am always impressed when they can see into the future to what they want to accomplish with a house.  It's a very large property also, so the grounds and surrounds will need a lot of work as well.  Just from my short visit with her she seems like the type to be able to get it all done.  We'll see where it goes from here!

My recommendation:  the home inspector's job is to identify what is possible on a house and report on it.  Recommendations as to what should be remodeled is not a part of this process.  I have done inspections on real heaps that people have fixed up beautifully.  However, I do counsel that the process is likely to take longer and cost more than expected!  But one day, despite the front door greeting we got at this home inspection, someone will drive up and go to this same front door and think, Welcome Home!

 

 

 

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


Comment balloon 45 commentsJay Markanich • September 13 2012 02:31AM

Comments

Morning Jay sounds like one of those places where the finished product outweighs what the eye beholds or something like that.  Enjoy the day

Posted by James Dray, Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results (Fathom Realty) over 8 years ago

People need a special eye for properties such as these James.  But many have them!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

Hi Jay.  It looks like she left no paver unturned also.

Posted by Conrad Allen, Webster, Ma, Realtor (Re/Max Professional Associates) over 8 years ago

I hope the buyers will not back out after reading the list of things they need to do. Good luck.

Posted by Gita Bantwal, REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel (RE/MAX Centre Realtors) over 8 years ago

Jay-Your approach is one that I like. I prefer this approach from inspectors and try to use those inspectors who follow your principles.

Posted by Wayne Johnson, San Antonio REALTOR, San Antonio Homes For Sale (Coldwell Banker D'Ann Harper REALTORS®) over 8 years ago

Morning Jay,

It's always fun when you are working with clients who have an imagination, the know how, the time, and the cash to to renovate a diamond in the rough.

 

Posted by Sharon Parisi, Dallas Homes (United Real Estate Dallas ) over 8 years ago

Jay, I don't have that type of buyer up here. Mine look at the house and reject it because it isn't completely updated and selling for half of market value.

Posted by Ed Silva, Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally (Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 ) over 8 years ago

Jay, with the seller being aware of the condition, I hope the buyers are getting a good deal.

Posted by Michael Setunsky, Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA over 8 years ago

So true.  I have had buyers in the past who discuss the property "passing inspection".  It is not a matter of pass or fail, just reporting the facts and then they can decide what they want to do with that information.

Posted by Kathryn Maguire, Serving Chesapeake, Norfolk, VA Beach (GreatNorfolkHomes.com (757) 560-0881) over 8 years ago

Jay...

Price is key. ANY house in any condition will sell for the right price. Many Internet searchers are too price conscious and not condition conscious enough.

Posted by Richard Weisser, Richard Weisser Retired Real Estate Professional (Richard Weisser Realty) over 8 years ago

Hi Jay,

Looks like we have more than just a few issues with the front entry way.

When I see these types of homes I want to cringe. Then as usual it becomes a long drawn out process evaluating everything that needs attention.

Have a great day in Bristow my friend.

Best, Clint McKie

Posted by Clint Mckie, Desert Sun Home, Comm. Inspection 1-575-706-5586 (Desert Sun Home, commercial Inspections) over 8 years ago

Jay  I've sold "this old house" many different times over the years, but always to a person who knew there was both a challenge and opportunity

Posted by Karen Kruschka, - "My Experience Isn't Expensive - It's PRICELESS" (RE/MAX Executives) over 8 years ago

Jay, It is refreshing to see buyer that is not scared to death by the home inspector's list. That shows a maturity and understanding tha every house will have "items" and most all of them can be fixed if you have the desire, time and money.

Posted by Debbie Reynolds, C21 Platinum Properties, The Dedicated Clarksville TN Realtor-(931)320-6730 (Platinum Properties- (931)771-9070) over 8 years ago

Well put Conrad.  Truly nothing was unturned.  Well, the electrical wasn't turned on, so there may be a return visit.  But a return isn't an unturn, right?

Gita - she knew very well the list before we left the property.  I also found a possible termite problem before the termite guy arrived.

Wayne - after they move in if they want my advice I will be full of it.  In the good way...

Sharon - this could very well be a diamond.  It's a small, but very nice house.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

Ed - they are out there!  Keep looking!

Mike - you'll have to speak with the realtor!  I think they did, but that's not my department!

Kathryn - I have buyers now and then ask me if the house "passed" inspection.  I don't know.  Really.

Richard - I honestly don't know the price.  If it was mentioned to me I don't remember.  But you might be right!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

It is Clint.  But she had seen many photographs prior to the inspection and probably knew a lot about the house that didn't frighten her.

Karen - this house will surely be both!  There was no electricity, so the inspection was sans electrical, water and heat!

Debbie - this house has items!  For sure!

 

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

Jay, Looks like you and Clint were inspecting in the same neighborhood.

Posted by Vince Chinell, CPI (VICO Home Inspection) over 8 years ago

It's nice that a buyer can see past some of these things and see the potential in a home.  I don't (and haven't) had many of those buyers.  Good post! 

 

Posted by Amanda Christiansen, Christiansen Group Realty (Christiansen Group Realty (260)704-0843) over 8 years ago

No way Vince.  Clint doesn't have our humidity out there!

Christiansens - they sure do come along because I have done a lot of inspections with them.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

There are times when I do ask my general contractor to get involved and write up recommendations

Posted by Harry F. D'Elia III, Investor , Mentor, GRI, Radio, CIPS, REOs, ABR (RentVest) over 8 years ago

That's different Harry!  But not during the inspection.  It's best to focus on one thing at a time!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

Good morning Jay. I love it when a client can see beyond what is in view. I always caution about costs of remodeling too but some are looking for that diamond in the rough.

Posted by Randy Ostrander, Real Estate Broker, Serving Big Rapids and West Central MI (Lake and Lodge Realty LLC ) over 8 years ago

I only wish that fewer of my houses have looked the way yours does in the picture but you're right, someone does buy it and make it beautiful.

Posted by Jill Sackler, LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate (Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500) over 8 years ago

Randy - once I was invited back to a house that totally frightened me during the inspection.  The couple had fixed it up and I was exceptionally impressed!

Jill - that's the plan!  You need to have the money and the time.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

Jay, I have investor type clients that are expecting a good deal of remodeling with very specific budgets in mind.  Sometimes they even give me dollar amounts.  Like they might say "as soon as you see $50,000 in repairs" the inspection is over.  Sometimes I have to say I could have told them that from my car :)

Posted by Charles Buell, Seattle Home Inspector (Charles Buell Inspections Inc.) over 8 years ago

Hi Jay

I wish I dealt with more clients that understood the necessity of having proper systems when buying a new home.

Posted by Ashley Connolly (Northeast Water Wells Inc) over 8 years ago

Jay, I like your post as always, and I agree with Richard (#10) above.  Any house will sell if the price is right.  Small fixes are curable, and if someone can overlook the needed repairs and see opportunity, they can get a great buy.

Posted by Gary Frimann, CRS, GRI, REALTOR and Broker (Eagle Ridge Realty / Signature Homes & Estates) over 8 years ago

Shadow Inspector - to that I have to say HA!  That has to be true!

Ashley - they can when properly instructed!  Might it also help to show them this blog?

Thanks Dale.  I think that was exactly the plan here.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

Gary - this is going to be a lot of money for virtually every system, except heating (new furnace).  The duct work needs work though!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

For sure Valerie.  First time buyers wouldn't be buying a property like this!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

Jay- I'll never forget the first time I looked at a "previously owned" home after living in our newly built home for a few years.  Once I got over the initial let down I was able to use a new set of eyes whenever we were looking for a home.  

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) over 8 years ago

I bet you love dealing with an informed buyer who knows the house will not be perfect!

Posted by Mike Frazier, Northwest Tennessee Realtor (Carousel Realty of Dyer County) over 8 years ago

Jay - Are you saying this property is a "Cosmetic Fixer". . .LOL  I have shown many homes which had either plants, trees or varmints taking up residency.   Some of them are even vacant:-)

Posted by Myrl Jeffcoat, Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent (GreatWest Realty) over 8 years ago

Kathy - doing that does change one's perspective!  It's good to put on a different set of glasses.

Mike - she knew that going in and was very informed!

Myrl - this house is VERY vacant!  And has been.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

I think this house is probably a good buy...if most of the work is cosmetic.  Most buyers do not mind putting in sweat equity if the house is sound.

Posted by Ginger Harper, Your Southport~Oak Island Agent~Brunswick County! (Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage~ Ginger Harper Real Estate Team) over 8 years ago

I hope she got it at a low enough price to do all the remodeling and repairs.  I'm sure she did, considering you said the agent was super.

Posted by Debbie Cook, Silver Spring and Takoma Park Maryland Real Estate (Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc) over 8 years ago

I think there is more than just cosmetics here Ginger!

Debbie - I don't know what the price is, but she thinks it's very attractive!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

Jay -- thanks for a great picture of what can happen when things just are not taken care of by the owner.

Posted by Steven Cook (No Longer Processing Mortgages.) over 8 years ago

It's always nice dealing with clients who can look past those sorts of things and recognize the potential of the home.

Posted by Kevin Mackessy, Dedicated. Qualified. Local. (Blue Olive Properties, LLC) over 8 years ago

Jay:

It used to be that most of the homes I sold needed a lot of updating and renovation work.  Most of my clients could see beyond the work and see how great the homes bones were.

Posted by Evelyn Kennedy, Alameda, Real Estate, Alameda, CA (Alain Pinel Realtors) over 8 years ago

Steven - I have a feeling it has been like that for some time!

Kevin - I don't know where things went from there, but she is a very circumspect buyer!

Evelyn - there was a lot to do here, but she seemed willing to take it on.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

Hi Jay, If this property were a listing of mine, I would at least remove those loose stepping stones just to prevent a hazard and clip the viens away. No excuse for this! When I see professionals leaving things like this that are a risk to the public coming on that property.....enough said.

Posted by William Johnson, Retired Real Estate Professional (Retired) over 8 years ago

William - the property is sold completely as is.  There was much, much more which could have been done to make the house more presentable!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

I admire anyone who has the ambition to take on a project of such magnitude. You buyer sounds like she knows what she's in for, I believe that is not always the case. 

Posted by James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) over 8 years ago

This house will be a lot of work Jim.  It is basic now, but I think she sees a lot more potential than a large percentage of buyers.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 8 years ago

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