There are a number of ways to find out the home history and condition. One is a home inspection. That will tell you the condition of the home as it is now. You can also go to http://www.accesskent and look to see if there are delinquent taxes, and usually when it was last sold. You would also want to read the seller's disclosure to see if anything out of the ordinary is mentioned. Last but, certainly not least, you would want to go to the city of Grand Rapids Neighborhood Improvements office and see if they have a file on the home. This will tell you if the City has any liens for lawn mowing, trash removal etc. All of these together should give you a good idea of the homes history. I can not say enough about the use of a buyer's agent to help you find a home. A buyer's agent works for you in finding the home you want but is paid by the seller of a home. There are just no negative aspects of having a professional aid you and there are numerous positives in having a buyer's agent working for you.
It was nice of Michelle to give you information about the home. She has a good online reputation.
The State of Michigan allows agents to work for the benefit of a home buyer under a signed buyers agency agreement. This can be for one home, one day, a week, whatever you and the agent agree upon. Why should you consider a buyer's agency agreement? Because then an agent is required by law to reprisent you in a transaction, not the home seller. Which way do you believe would get you a better deal on a home?
BTW, hope you got a chance to look at the fall colors this weekend, I came down from Ludington today, colors are further along in the GR area than that area. http://Michigan.org has several fall color tours and events available.
MLS#: 724448m H $99,900 Residential Sold for 94,000
Single Family 1&1/2-Story Site Built Home
Full/Half Baths: 1/0
706 WINCHELL ST SE
GRAND RAPIDS, MI 49507
TA: Grand Rapids, City
School District: Grand Rapids
Year Built: 1941 Age: 67 Garage: 1 stall/Detached Exterior: Alum Siding
Basement: Full Heat: Gas/Forced Air
ANSI Sq Ft: 1,296 / Municipality Water: City Water Pool: N Air: Central air
TFLA Sq Ft: 1,816 Sewer: City Sewer Fireplace: 0 Lot Size: 46X92
Lot Wooded: Zoning: RES Driveway: Paved Street Type: Paved
Listing Comments: Sharp Alger Heights home that has been updated, newer furnace, air, roof, driveway etc. Finished lower level. Hardwood floors. Awesome location, close to shopping, churches, schools and restaurants. Priced well under assessed value
Nothing out of the ordinary!