Buying a Fixer Home in Elk Grove Presents Opportunity

Fixer home elk groveAs long as that fixer home in Elk Grove has not lost its integrity, I would consider buying it, providing the price was right. Many people would agree with this premise — I should more clearly define “many people” as the people who don’t mind doing repairs or fixing up homes. Because not every buyer wants to buy a home if it presents a few challenges. As with life, I suspect most don’t enjoy challenges. They would prefer a challenge-free life, a marshmallow life.

On the other hand, I love challenges because for me it’s a very clear set of purpose. After I study what’s presented, I can envision the conclusion, the outcome, the goal; it’s crystal clear. Take home improvement projects, for example. I love to remodel homes and turn them into pieces of artwork, and I’m just about done with my own home so you know what that means. It means I need to work on somebody else’s home because my husband is not yet ready to move.

I’m too busy, though. Which means my improvement urges are suppressed. I sell real estate in a 4-county area in Sacramento, and that career keeps me plenty busy working with clients. When I spot a fixer home that is begging for work, I can’t help but feel pulled toward it. It’s a sickness of sorts. Like my dead ex-husband who liked to start new companies always had a problem driving past a “for lease” sign because it called to him to rent the space, remodel it and open a business. See what I mean? Stupid. You catch that home improvement bug, and you yearn to tackle new projects; like a chocolate craving, you can’t help it.

This Elk Grove agent has listed a home in Elk Grove that is crying out for such a project. It’s a short sale, but it’s pretty much a guaranteed short sale for reasons I can’t go into. Trust that if you write an offer, it will close. There is a little bit of dry rot, it needs a new roof (approx $10,000), I would replace the carpeting (because it’s stretched, dirty and an icky color), and the seller says the toilet upstairs needs a new seal and had leaked, which is why the water is turned off.

This home is priced roughly $70,000 below its fixed-up market value according to the 1/2 mile comps for a 3 bedroom, 3 bath, over 2100 square feet in Foulk’s Ranch. But the flippers nowadays seem to have higher profit margins, they want steeper discounts, which a short sale won’t necessarily offer. Some don’t seem to understand that banks aren’t figuring in the flipper’s profit margin when determining value on those BPOs. At $255,000, it’s a great deal for an owner occupant, though, especially a first-time home buyer.

Slap on a new roof through an energy-efficient mortgage, perhaps fix the few spots of dry rot to get a mortgage, and deal with the rest of the stuff later. Even a 203K loan would suffice and handle all the repairs. But many homebuyers want turn-key projects, and don’t care about the quality of the work. I’ve always figured I’d rather have the home fixed up according to my own standards and not those of some guy out to make a fast buck, but that’s me, and I’m not normal. Remember, I love home improvement projects.

So, here’s the deal. Either buy the home today, do your own repairs the right way and pocket the leftover equity, or buy it later from a flipper and pay a premium for the opportunity.

Check out 7113 Ballygar Way, Elk Grove, CA 95624, offered by your Elk Grove agent, Elizabeth Weintraub, Lyon Real Estate, 916.233.6759.

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