I live in a rural area. A few years ago I inherited a house from my parents, it was built in 1986 - 2 bdrm/2 bath, 1300 sq ft. The roof is about 6 years old, the a/c is the same. The interior is outdated.
Here are the issues:
Old carpet in bedrooms, sculpted.
Old vinyl flooring in bathrooms, peeling.
Old cabinetry in kitchen.
Garage door broken and dented.
Shower in master, tile separated and leaked into little sidewall.
Soapdish fell off guest bathroom tiled wall, and hole is covered with plastic.
Baseboard behind kitchen sink is rotted.
Sliding glass door off track.
Old toilets, need replacement.
The house has a big "R" attached to the front of it, my grandfather monogrammed it.
I am a 30 year old student who lives in a dorm 2 hours away. My fiance lives in the house but got laid off and his job wants to relocate him to Orlando where I am. Neither one of us is very good at fixing things nor to we have ANY disposable income to invest.
We were thinking of just closing up the property and leaving it vacant for a bit or selling it. The houses around me though are barely selling and for drastically low prices...and my house has a ton of cosmetic issues. My cousin lives 5 minutes away and can check on a vacant house. I know I have to leave the air on 80 in Florida to prevent mold.
What is your advice? Should I sell the house for whatever I can get or should I just leave it vacant?
Get what you can for the house- sell!
I agree with SELL.
Holding on to it will gain you nothing compared to paying for updates, insurance, utilities and taxes cost, possible vandalism, and just worry/concern issues.
The house is not going to heal itself, I agree with the others.
Sadly, I agree with the others to simply sell now and take the loss ~ leaving it vacant will achieve nothing and probably result in an even lower selling price in the future.
But, if your fiance is living in the house and not working right now, there are a number of things he can do to, at least, help it sell faster. Clean, clean and clean. De-clutter completely. Shine up everything possible - including all windows (inside and out), clean the window coverings and make the outside spotless ~ no weeds, trash or broken things laying around.
None of that takes any "fix-it" skill ~ just energy, labor and the determination to make the best outcome of a difficult situation.
I realize that you don't have any extra money to make significant improvements, but $500 at the local big box store could probably replace the carpets and tile given the size of the house; another $100 would probably cover the cost of a handyman to replace the soap dish as well as the sliding glass door.
Don't worry about fixing the other problems ~ specifically the kitchen and master bathroom ~ you don't have the resources to do so. But, the above suggestions should be possible ~ especially if your fiance is living there rent-free while he is unemployed. I would hope that he would be willing to make the effort so that the house will sell as quickly as possible under the circumstances. Good Luck!
PS. Don't worry about the "R" insignia on the outside of the house. Maybe the new buyers' names will start with an "R" ~ who knows? This message has been edited. Last edited by: Idaho Resident,
Thanks for advice everyone. I discussed some of the things I learned online with my fiance and he loves the house and doesn't want to lose it. My career is on the precipice of taking off and he feels if he can find work, that we financially will be able to put the money into fixing some things and keeping our home. So looks like he is gonna give a go and stay. Pray he finds work at home soon!
Thanks for posting back, OP! Good to know that your fiance is in it for the long-haul; there is a lot he can do to fix-up the place ~ even with no money or skills! Read my post above and good luck ~ keep us posted on the progress.
PS. If both of you really want to try to keep this house, it's not necessary for him to have a job in order to do most of the work I suggested above ~ it's just energy, labor and determination that gets the work done - no money necessary! It doesn't depend on him finding a new job; this will be his "new" job for now; hope it goes well....This message has been edited. Last edited by: Idaho Resident,
Jen, did I read your initial post correctly that your fiance has a job offer in your location? For me, that would be the priority.
I would either sell the home as-is and/or begin planning (WRT repairs and minor improvements) to sell during the next prime selling season for your local area - usually early spring through summer.
If, OTOH, you and your fiance realistically believe that both of you can eventually find employment and return to that area, then you can enjoy any improvements you're able to complete as a result of your fiance's additional income.
JMHO and best of luck to you -This message has been edited. Last edited by: BearCat49,
Again, it is a difficult situation. If you really want to keep the house I would suggest paying for a professional home inspection or if you know someone who is a licensed contractor - ask them to come in and give their honest opinion about what it will take to bring the house up to standard.
When you know what you really have - then make the decision to stay or sell. If you do not have termite protection - you may not have that much house to hand on to in the South. Is the rot unter the sink from water damage? Termites? or both? A termite inspection will cost about $75 - $150 depending on the size and type of structure.
What is the status of insulation? How much did it cost your parents to heat and cool the house? How much is homeowners insurance? How much are property taxes? Can you get homeowners insurance if the house is unoccupied? Are the windows original or double pane? County water or well? Septic or sewer?
How much is it going to cost to keep the a/c running 6+ months a year?
IF you decide to stay the big box stores have Saturday seminars and your fiance can learn a few skills to help with the soap dish, floors, etc. But it will take pros for the big stuff.
This is the best advice on the whole thread. The septic and water situation are important, because obviously having a septic tank can be a real bummer same with well water. You may need a water softener and washing clothes can be a pain with that type of water.
Charming is a very insightful and kind poster who I have found to understand people and lifes problems that come into play during these tough house selling or fixing up times.
I wish you all the best and hope the house gets the TLC it deserves. You may be surprised at how much you can do all by yourself as long as you are healthy~
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