Thursday, May 22, 2014

FOR SALE: Historic Short Sale Fixer Upper

I recently listed this property for sale:

This house is a fixer upper opportunity for investors or the ambitious owner-occupant.  The out of area owner contacted me asking for help with a short sale.  He purchased the place back in 2004 when a prominent real estate investment group was reselling properties to new investors.  Things didn't work out and onerous financing on the property has put it into distress.

The home is about 1900 SQFT with a 3 bed 1 bath configuration.  The property could be a real charmer with the right vision and work to bring it back to its original luster.  It is located at 536 23rd St. and is found just a block and a half from The Junction.

Here is a video tour:

CONTACT ME for updates on progress of the short sale and details on the property.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Photo of the Day: Patriotic Paint

I was out showing homes to a client this evening and our view was graced by this unconventional paint scheme:

Go America!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Vexing Vacancy: Busting the Myth That Empty Properties Are Less Maintenance

One of the myths that homeowners and landlords often succumb to is the idea that vacant property is somehow less maintenance than occupied property.  After all, tenants just create wear and tear on carpets, hardware, and other surfaces.  However, just like a seldom used car needs to be turned on and driven around the block every once in a while, vacant housing often requires the same periodic attention.

A good example comes from clients that I service in Ogden Valley.  They have been on assignment outside of the U.S. for a couple years and come back once or twice a year for Holidays.  In the months that they are gone, I visit the property and run through a checklist of items to make sure the home is in proper order.  This has been a very successful way to keep up on landscaping, snow removal, and to check for potential water hazards.  We have caught many issues over the past couple of years that could have gotten worse had we not been their to notice and take action.

I am reminded of the importance of having a steward visit vacant property because of an experience I had recently.  In this case, the property was a home with a mother-in-law apartment.  The tenants live upstairs and the out of state owner visits the basement mother-in-law apartment several times a year.  However, due to the frequency of his visits, he did not arrange regular visits from us.  So, today, I was at the home with a contractor to review some repair items upstairs.  We needed to access the basement to find the breaker box.

The owner had not been to visit since the first week in April.  When we opened the door, the odor of mildew immediately tipped us off that something was wrong.  As we found our way further into the basement the air became muggy and the carpets began to slosh with water.  We followed a loud hissing sound to the living room where we found a burst pipe shooting water from the ceiling.

It was at that point that the tenant remarked that she had smelt mildew for a couple weeks but thought it was just due to the spring rains we have had.  Well, it turns out this water has been running into the basement for at least that long if not longer.

The leak is simply due to the age of the pipes.  Copper lines often get pinhole leaks as they age.  While this burst pipe couldn't have been prevented by regular visits, the damage it caused could have been mitigated sooner and reduced the cost of repairs.  This case is so sever that the insurance company will be handling the remediation.  

If you are considering leaving your property vacant, we provide very affordable property management services to check regularly on the property.  These routine checkups can save you a lot of inconvenience and expense.  If you are interested in discussing a routine visit to your property, CONTACT ME and I can show you how it will save you money.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

JUST SOLD! Historic Tiny Cottage

I recently closed with some clients on this interesting property in the historic Lorin Farr neighborhood of Ogden near the River Parkway:

The property is very unique in that it was originally part of another lot that has another 'newer' 1920's era home on it.  This house was built at the back of the lot to serve as the home while the owners built their larger brick home in the front of the lot.  Rather than being torn down though after construction of the brick home was complete, this home was preserved and improved.  Ultimately, the lot was subdivided and this back house was sold to new owners.  The  alley servicing the rear of the lots in this neighborhood now serves as a driveway for this home.  It is a very curious and unique situation.

Fortunately, my clients are folks who appreciate curious and unique homes.  After pursuing several other eclectic properties, we finally settled on this one. The home is 575 SQFT on the main level with a 480 SQFT finished basement area.   I believe it would almost fit in the 'tiny' house category of homes.

The property was originally listed for $99,000 in early March.  In April, the list price was reduced to $94,000.  Our initial offer was $88,500 and asking $2,500 in closing costs.  We wanted to test the motivation level of the seller.  In this case, the seller was not very motivated.  They countered back to us at $93,500 while paying $2,500 in closing costs.  My buyers ultimately agreed to those terms.

Once we conducted our inspections, we noticed there were a few items that needed maintenance.  After reviewing these items with the sellers, we all agreed to reduce the contract price to $91,700.  Finally, after jumping through some final underwriting and technical loan issues, we closed on the property.

Congratulations to my buyers! They are moving to Ogden from a pioneer-era rock home located in Mendon, UT.

If you are thinking of purchasing a home, CONTACT ME, and lets find the home that is the right fit for you.