Thursday, August 20, 2009

Fixer-Uppers Are Still Out There

It has been awhile since my last post. I went away for a bit, and have been pretty busy, just trying to catch up, and field daily new inquiries. It seems that there is plenty of interest, but still only at the "bargain level" for whatever price range. It appears people's perspectives are still being dictated by the media, and the news that this may be the bottom has got people poking their heads up out of their respective foxholes, but again only if it is a "deal".

However some sellers are responding, and I have had a few calls on things that appear to be just that...a deal. I went out an previewed two properties this week that I had calls on. Now I suppose a "deal" is in the eye of the beholder, but these two properties in particular caught my eye enough to write about here.

Neither are my listing, so the suspicious folk do not need to worry that I am plugging my inventory.

Click here for listings

The old boarding home is a pretty unique building. First of all, it is set on 78 private acres. Some of it is open pasture and a nice stream, (although a pretty major portion is on a hillside). It has its own private wooden bridge to get to the property, and most (if not all) of its originality remains. I also added a couple of my own shots below. This is one of those properties that make you feel like you are stepping back into the fifties. All the bedrooms are small, but there are 12. Hardwood floors are original, the barn is also original and huge.

Check out the player piano with all the scrolls. Every once in a while you get the hair on the back of your neck cool feeling about a property, (kind of like when you hear a song you really like for the first time.) and this one definitely has it.

It is a ton of work--many would consider it a money pit or a headache, but an original old 1850's boarding house on 78 acres with a stream under three hours from midtown for $319,000 to me is a "deal". I say this one is in contract by Oct. 1. Anyone want to take an over/under on that?

The other property is considerably less money, but has the same kind of old originality. It was the general store in Galilee, PA for years. This property is also pretty big (five bedrooms and a big space downstairs), and needs work. Most of the original building remains, although there were some hodge-podge renovations over the years. Portions of the tin ceilings have been destroyed, which is a real shame, but I think they can be salvaged. Also, there is little evidence of Home Depot around.
However, this is another property where you feel like you are stepping back in time. Many times I hear the complaints that old-school originality is tough to find, and often what was once vintage is now covered by cheap '70's paneling or foofy 80's textured wall paper. Here are two of examples where the right person can really get in there, roll up there sleeves, and turn either one of these into a truly spectacular properties.

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