Amtrak/ train line right at backyard.

Asked by HappyIam, Queens, NY Fri Feb 19, 2010

I'm looking into buying a house in Woodside, NY near Northern Blvd. The Amtrak train tracks is right next to the backyard on an elevated platform. How can i find out the route this train travels to find out how many trains pass by and at what times. How often do freight and cargo trains run?

In addition, the house is right next to the parking lot of a supermarket. There is no fence between the house and the parked cars. Should I worry about cars hitting the side of the house? If damage is done to the side of house who is responsible for the damage? There are no windows on the side of the house for me to see if something happens. What concerns should I be worried about?

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Joseph Hastings’ answer
Joseph Hasti…, Agent, Bayside, NY
Wed Feb 24, 2010
Hi Happylam. Since you've already gotten your answers below from others. I'll be brief. You're probably considering this house because the price seems rather good, perhaps too good. Now, look at the negatives here that you've indicated. Train outside your door, open parking lot and the possibility of damage to the house.

You have two choices. One is to buy it, the other is don't buy it. Ultimately if you buy, at some point in your ownership you might look to sell. At that point your questions become someone else's questions. Your appreciation value may also suffer due to the proximity of the stated problems.

Surely there are other options in Woodside that wouldn't have these considerations. If price rules your choices, you may have already made your decision. Good luck.
0 votes
Bill Eckler, Agent, Venice, FL
Sat Feb 20, 2010
All of your concerns are real...and they will be real for the next buyers as well......

Since this is the case you can plan that as the owner of this home you also will be dealing with buyers asking the same questions. Selling property with "issues attached" is not easily done and should be a consideration now.

We would recommend speaking with an insurance company about coverage...this may provide some clarification for you.

Good luck
The Eckler Team
0 votes
Ralph Windsc…, Agent, Hauppauge, NY
Sat Feb 20, 2010
This is the very reason why you should be working with a buyer's agent. Location, location, location is the mantra of how a home is valued in real estate - even more than it's condition. You really need to speak with a buyer's agent who can guide you into making the right decision for you in both the long and short term. The price of the house should reflect the location.

Ralph Windschuh
Associate Broker
Senior Real Estate Specialist
Certified Buyer Representative
Century 21 Princeton Properties
0 votes
Debra (Debbi…, Agent, Livingston, NJ
Fri Feb 19, 2010
This house better be priced at a huge percentage below similar homes.......a really big discount!

I am sure you can ask the owners about the train.....or call for an Amtrak schedule.

As far as the parking lot - if anyone hits the side of the house, I am sure their insurance would kick in.....but is the lot really that close to the side of the home? How late is the store open? Would the parking lot lighting be illuminating your home?

You sound very concerned about these issues. I can understand why.

To be honest with you..unless this is the home of the century, at a price next to nothing........I'd think long and hard before buying it............and plan on living there for a very long time.

Good luck!
0 votes
Dan Chase, Home Buyer, Texas City, TX
Fri Feb 19, 2010
You are describing a house with multiple negatives. As you are concerned about those things being a problem today so will other buyers tomorrow.

A house like this will take a lot longer to sell and have a lower price because of the problems you described. If you wish to sell in a few years it would be better to buy something without all of the problems you describe.

You could ask the neighbors about the train schedule. I bet they know.
If carts from the store hit and damage your house I believe that store would be liable for that damage. It is their property that would be damaging yours.

It really sounds like you are trying to find reasons not to buy this house. I would look for others without the problems this one has if it was me looking.
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