Now this says it all! I have home inspections done when I take a listing to avoid these kind of surprises. I also have contractor bids for work that needs to be done. If an item prevents settlement, I gear toward getting that item completed by a licensed contractor up front.
Sometimes It is Better NOT to List a House
A friend of mine referred me to a lady (let’s call her Mary, since that was her name) who was getting ready to list her family home of many years. The home was built in the early 1900’s and was owned by Mary’s family from the time it was new. It was passed on from generation to generation. Mary was the last of the lineage to inherit the home and she lived on the east coast. Mary came out to Denver to go through the family treasures before offering the home for sale.
After getting the grand tour from Mary, I could see that she came from a family of hoarders. There were things from way back when – in fact there were still calendars hanging on the walls from the 1950’s. She just laughed like a little school girl when I asked about the calendars and said after she moved out in the 60’s, her parents never took anything off the walls. In fact, her bedroom from the 60’s remained untouched.
As a Realtor, my first thought was “Ok, this home has potential lead based paint”.
I noticed some cracking in the ceiling and asked Mary if the ceilings had ever been repaired. She informed me that the roof on the home had been replaced ten years earlier and there was a garage that was added but that was it as far as home improvements and repairs.
As a Realtor, my first thought was “This home has potential asbestos”.
We finished the tour and I proceeded to talk with Mary about the comps in the area. Next I told her that we wouldn’t be able to do anything until she had the entire interior of the home painted. I told Mary that any peeling paint would need to be scraped and then fresh paint applied to everything. I trie to educate her about the hazards of lead based paint. I also told Mary to have someome repair the ceilings and that she should have an evaluation done to determine whether or not the home had asbestos based insulation.
Mary wasn’t hearing any of it. In her mind, her home was a castle and was perfect in its current condition. She listed with another Realtor who advised her to sell the home AS IS. It did sell and it closed some time ago. The new owners have been working on the home for months trying to get it ready to FLIP.
Yesterday, my friend (who originally referred me into this home) sent me a picture he took with his phone. After pouring cement in the basement of Mary’s home, the new owners had a big problem on their hands.
As you can see, the wall buckled out and the bricks are tumbling down. The home has caution tape around it and the fire department thinks the entire home might crumble to the ground.
I am so relieved that Mary picked that other Realtor.