Home Buying in Redmond>Question Details

Jj, Home Buyer in Redmond, WA

Ask for opinions about 1960's ramblers which needs upgrade

Asked by Jj, Redmond, WA Sat Feb 23, 2013

Are they worthy buying? I may not want to do the upgrades myself. But if the other things about the house is ok, should I still consider it? Is buying older houses more risky for the maintainance?

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Older homes are built better then anything built today because the materials were better except for the old nob & tube wiring & galvinized water pipes that all need to be changed out. Myself, I have never bought a house purchased after 1950. You get an inspection & you will know what is wrong with the house. So, really less risk as far as I am concerned.

I am both a real estate broker & a loan office. If you need any help, just let me know.

Good luck to you in any case,
Jirius Isaac
Isaac Real Estate Team
Champions Real Estate Services
TriStar Finance #MLO-107799
Office: 425-483-6849 Cell: 206-841-9976
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0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Feb 24, 2013
I wouldn't call older houses more risky, because newer houses have their own risks. The risks are just different. When we were looking to buy a house several years ago, I ruled out anything built after 2000 because of those risks.

Siding: Many of the alternatives to cedar siding simply do not hold up well. They need just as much maintenance as cedar, but if they don't get it they require expensive replacement siding. An older house with cedar siding which has been well maintained may very well be the best product you could hope for.

Electrical: This is probably the one area where a new house has a clear advantage. Outlet spacing, grounding wires, number of circuits, and the ability of the insulating covers to withstand heat have all improved over the years. Then there are the defective products of the past, such as Zinsco and Federal Pacific breaker panels. On the bright side, I think we're finally getting to the point where our houses' electrical demand is decreasing, so it's less likely the number of circuits will be inadequate going forward.

Plumbing: Here older may likely be better in that older may be more likely to be copper. All the other materials, older or newer, may be problematic in some way, or at least inferior.

Insulation: This can also be a concern, but for most houses the ceilings and floors can be easily upgraded. Upgrading walls can be more problematic.

Prior Upgrades: This is an area that you have to take on a case by case basis. As a general rule, remodeling that changes the floor plan is a negative, because the design is poorly thought out or simply doesn't fit. I've seen notable exceptions, however. Then there is also the un-permitted work which is done, but covered up (e.g. sheet rock) so that the quality of the work cannot be determined.

Bottom line is I wouldn't shy away from older homes. The one I ended up buying was built in 1969.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Feb 24, 2013
In genersl homes built in the 60's are very well built...often with hardwood floors and clear cedar siding. By the 60's many WWII vets were coming into their own in the trades and the qualiy of their work showed. I would not hesitate to at least consider homes from this era...they are typically better built than 70's and 80's thrown together crap posing as well built homes...as well as tract homes by DR Horton, etc.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 23, 2013
Jj,
Certain things about an 1960's built home may be better than today's construction. You'll need a thorough inspection to check out the electrical, plumbing and insulation as well as everything else. Some of the main concerns may be "updates" done along the way.
Whatever you do make certain your agent looks at true comparables to determine the value.
One more thought, a 203K Rehab loan can help you finance into the loan the updates you may need/want to do.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 23, 2013
An older rambler with no upgrades in 98005 just bid up from $409k to $510k in Dec-Jan with 10 offers. If you are seeing one sitting around close to Microsoft in Redmond, look for something else about it other then older rambler, as that in and of itself would not hold it back from selling in this market.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 23, 2013
You can get some pretty good deals on homes that need upgrades. A lot of people won't even look at those types of homes so sometimes it is easier to get them at a discount. Just make sure you get a home inspection and make sure there isn't anything major that you will need to fix. If you have any other questions or you would like a list of homes for sale in your area just give me a call. I'd be happy to help.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Feb 23, 2013
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