Trulia Community - Advice from neighbors and local experts

Find Your Community
We couldn't find that location. Please try again.
Get Expert Advice

Remodel & Renovate in Atlanta : Real Estate Advice

  • All3K
  • Local Info360
  • Home Buying1K
  • Home Selling143
  • Market Conditions99

Activity 34
Wed May 10, 2017
Chris Colvin answered:
Bad idea, no matter how you slice up the cake. Code minimum is in place for a reason, and when you walk into a space that doesn't meet an ergonomic minimum it often just needs to be fixed with a hammer. Plus when you sell it the Appraiser will note it, and it won't be a value-add to the property. ... more
0 votes 1 answer Share Flag
Mon Feb 6, 2017
Seandantignac answered:
What is the minimum size window for a bedroom ?
0 votes 13 answers Share Flag
Thu Sep 29, 2016
Diane Brown asked:
Wed Sep 2, 2015
Jeri Patrick answered:
I would contact a local real estate agent to help you with a CMA on your home. Best of luck
0 votes 3 answers Share Flag
Wed Mar 4, 2015
Kevin White answered:
Hello there,

If the cabinets are newer or still are on-trend and the Corian is the only item "dating" the kitchen then I recommend replacement. A nice finish and light color is Santa Cecelia or Gold Santa Cecelia granite. Stay away from Uba Tuba (black/dark green hew) and Baltic Brown which were over-used because of their affordable bulk price points in the beginning of the granite trend. Those colors can potentially "date" your kitchen even though it is indeed brand new granite. NOTE- If the cabinets also need replacement because of condition or really off current trends/materials then simply leave the Corian but price the home accordingly to include those potential kitchen upgrades if comparable homes offer updated kitchens. Thanks! ... more
0 votes 6 answers Share Flag
Wed Jan 7, 2015
KIKI JACKSON answered:
I have a great contractor contact me today

Kiki Jackson
Keller Williams Realty Peachtree Rd.
0 votes 10 answers Share Flag
Wed Dec 17, 2014
Christopher Pagli answered:
You'll have to contact the local building dept and see if they would issue a permit for this.

0 votes 1 answer Share Flag
Sun Jul 20, 2014
Diana Hellman answered:
Buyers like the option of both tub and shower but if you do not have the space for both then your idea sounds like a good option..
0 votes 19 answers Share Flag
Thu May 15, 2014
Lisa Allen, Buyers and Sellers answered:
Great all around contractors that I use. Here is their current offer:

L Squared Design had a special offer for you and your neighbors: From now through June 15, 2014, L2 Design will take 10% off of any home refinish/remodel/repair project valued at up to $3000 and 20% off projects of $5000 or more! Our mission is to help you achieve a home you can LOVE--without the inflated prices so common in this market. We remodel, refinish and refresh spaces, big and small. Our CAD-based design services give you full visibility and creative input on everything from custom built-ins to entire rooms.

You can contact us at 770-675-6120 or for complimentary estimates on:
· Kitchen and Bathroom design and remodeling
· Cabinet refinishing
· Handyman/repair work
· Our exclusive "SpaceliftTM" spruce up, a new solution to quick, budget-friendly room renovation and decorating
· Staging for home sale
· Whatever you may need...If it's home-related, we can probably help--or help you find someone who can.

We look forward to serving you!
... more
0 votes 3 answers Share Flag
Tue Dec 17, 2013
areibly answered:
AR Services, LLC
"A Quality Home Company"
2295 Towne Lake Pkwy
Suite 116-188
Woodstock, Ga 30189
678-444-2202 ofc

Lic. Gen. Contractor, Realtors, FHA 203K Consultant

Very experienced at 203K reno's and all of the hurdles invloved. Thanks! ... more
0 votes 15 answers Share Flag
Fri Mar 15, 2013
Becky Loar answered:
I have a a really good dependable contractor used in Selling Foreclosures (approx 2500) in the last several years. Please email me directly and I will be glad to give you his name and contact information.
Becky Loar, President
The Becky Loar Group@ ERA Allpoints
Happy New Year!
... more
0 votes 4 answers Share Flag
Thu Jan 3, 2013
Sally English answered:
I would think both projects would return your investment. Enclosing the carport would be a higher priority than the parking pad.
0 votes 7 answers Share Flag
Wed Dec 5, 2012
Kim Hnoun answered:
Please give me a call. Depending on what your needs are, I have teamed up with severla general contractors that does great jobs. I even use them to work on my personal properties.
0 votes 2 answers Share Flag
Sat Jun 23, 2012
Hank Miller answered:
if any part of any wall is 6"-1' below grade then FNMA calls that area finished basement and it will not be included in the overall living area.

0 votes 3 answers Share Flag
Sat Apr 28, 2012

I share your frustration with contractors. As a lender, it falls on us to ensure the documentation from the contractor conforms to FHA requirements. Not sure why the bank requires you to use a a specific list of contractors. One of our biggest problems with the 203k program is the quality of the contractor. We don't require the buyer to use a specific contractor so our experience is that homeowners generally like to pick someone that will give them a great deal, often a relative or a friend. That usually does not work out well for the homeowner or us because the process requires significant documentation that many "handymen" are not used to providing.

My recommendation is that you select a contractor from a larger company that will want to ensure the work is done right and the customer is satisfied because they have more to lose if this is not the case. I usually encourage my borrowers to speak with Home Depot and Lowes because they have developed a list of 203k contractors that meet their high standards for quality and customer service (and of course who also buy materials at their stores). No contractor would want to have Home Depot get bad feedback on their performance so we see the customer service to be particularly good with these contractors. Additionally since many 203k projects also involve new appliances these home centers really become a one stop shop for everything.

As the lender, I like them because I know the contractor has been through the 203k drill before and knows what paperwork is required, how to ensure they get paid on time and ultimately that they want to keep both the buyer and the lender happy for the prospect of future business.

Don't give up on the 203k loan, it is a solid product. Given your experience thus far, I would ask your loan officer to allow you to select your own contractor and if he or she balks at that, I would consider another lender. Your appraisal is transferable so there is little downside to moving forward with someone else. Feel free to contact me if I can help you in a way. Hang in there, it will get better...

Timothy Brown
LPO Manager | Evolve Bank & Trust
11605 Haynes Bridge Road Suite 125| Alpharetta, GA 30009
678.468.5626 x110 | fax 678.935.1156 | cell 678.467.9959
NMLS#: 168281
... more
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
Wed Feb 15, 2012
Mike Franz answered:
This is your house. You live there. Install what you want. Carpeting over hardwood floors is performed all the time. Your interior doors will probably need to be cut down at the bottom due to additional floor height. Carpeting can be removed and hardwood floors replaced / refinished when needed. Hardwood floors are a good selling point, but if they are in bad shape and you like carpeting, then go for it. Enjoy your home.
When you are ready to sell, then you can decide if the cost of replacing is suitable.
... more
0 votes 15 answers Share Flag
Thu Dec 1, 2011
Shari A. Thomas answered:
Hello Cecilia,

Congratulations on your recent graduation and decision to buy a home! My firm has much experience with Down Payment Assistant programs and would be delighted to work for you. My contact info is as follows:
... more
0 votes 8 answers Share Flag
Mon Jun 20, 2011
Chris Colvin answered:
Depending on where the property is in relation to GP, be really careful about the historical review board & NRB that will need to see the drawings showing what is proposed for construction. Also, I hope you are working with a HUD 203k Consultant that has experience in this part of town, and this type of house. We have 7 active 203k's in Grant Park right now with a couple more in permitting, and can offer some good advice on what lies ahead. Importantly, please carefully choose a Lender who has a history of CLOSING these loans ~ These reno's are unique, and you will need a good team behind you.

Chris Colvin
... more
0 votes 9 answers Share Flag
Fri Oct 22, 2010
Hank Miller answered:
An appraiser MUST have experience in a neighborhood? Must? Really? And an agent can't work Sandy Springs and Roswell? Jeff - you can't do work OTP? Do the rules change? Last I checked, the guidelines for what constitute above grade/below grade areas were the same ITP and OTP. Come to think of it, so are the rules regulating other parts of the appraisal process.

Appraised value is based upon CLOSED sales and analysis of the area. Competent appraisers have multiple resouces for finding CLOSED sales - MLS/FMLS/Redlink/Tax Records - in any area. The closed sales and the data derived for the 1004MC will set value parameters.

Now toss in pictures - yes those are required along with pix of any functional and external issues, deferred maintenance or other value/marketing influences. Toss in as well that during the underwriting process the URARs are reviewed and statistical models are used to develop parameters for the area independent of the appraisal.

So what does "know the area" mean? Is it "make the number" - haven't appraisers been drawn and quartered for "making the number"? Here's a novel idea - how about agents stop BS'ing folks about what their property might be worth. How about agents learn what appraisers do, how they look at homes, how they derive value and what's involved trying to anticipate the stupidity of the underwriting process. How about agents actually comp listings like an appraiser so they can head off issues? "Kill the deal" is as stupid a saying as there is.

I'm both a certified appraiser and broker, I see it from both sides. I routinely speak with agents and owners about assignments, I ask for their input and always ensure I hit all the bases. That said, any report I do stands on the data - of course it's subjective but at the end of the day it has to be reasonable and supported by current data. Appraisers are not in the witness protection program and this isn't rocket science!

The market dictates value - that home is worth what someone is willing to pay. We don't know that number until it's listed so in the meantime it's appraised. An appraisal can change based upon the comps - an appraisal is a supported value at a single point in time - the next day it could change. It's not a guarantee of anything.

Aubry - if you want to shoot me an email with the report I'll look at it and see if there are errors, I've done that many times before.

Let's ease up on the drama with ITP/OTP and all the other nonsense -
... more
0 votes 9 answers Share Flag
Tue May 4, 2010
Supergirl answered:
There is an excellent Structural Engineer that we know. Graduate of Georgia Tech, runs his own business now. Good guy. Smart and dependable. Malcom Foss.
1 vote 4 answers Share Flag
1 2
Search Advice