How do I avoid purchasing a money pit?

Sammamish Mortgage
Post Date: February 11, 2021Updated: April 30, 2021

Everyone has heard the stories of homebuyers who got in over their heads. It doesn’t take a bathtub falling through the second story floor for a home purchase to turn into a vortex that eats all of your cash. Find out how you can avoid mistakes that lead you to getting saddled with a house that is a money pit.

Flee the Fixer Upper

The typical fixer upper can quickly turn into exactly what you want to avoid: a money pit that never seems to fill in. If you want to buy an old mansion in your ideal location and don’t mind it taking years and years of time and hundreds of thousands of dollars to transform, go for it. If you just want a decent place to live at a good price, you’re better off with a smaller home in a neighborhood with a little longer commute.

Go Over That Home Inspection Line By Line

Examine every single item on the home inspection report. How old is the HVAC system? The water heater? The roof? These can be big ticket items to repair or replace. The list goes on. Will you need new appliances? How is the wiring and plumbing? Did you walk through the basement? If you live in an area with known pests, a pest inspection can be well worth the money.

What About the Neighborhood?

A nice house in a bad neighborhood can turn into a money pit just because you may not be able to unload it when the time comes. If a deployment or job or school situation means you need to sell, and you get stuck paying two mortgages and trying to upkeep the home from another state, your costs can quickly add up. Also look at zoning to make sure the area you buy in isn’t due for big changes that could negatively affect your home value and tank your equity.

Check the Foundation

The basement and/or foundation should be one of the areas you look most closely at. Foundation repair can easily ruin into tens of thousands of dollars, and that’s just to fix the underpinning of your home. You could be out even more cash to fix cracks, crooked windows and doors, ruined flooring, and other issues due to your house settling and sagging.

These tips can help you avoid buying a money pit and watching your “dream house” fall apart before your very eyes.

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