Buying A Home
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Having trouble deciding between 2 houses....help!

greenteagreentea newb
edited June 2015 in Buying A Home
Hi
My husband and I are buying our second home we currently live in the burbs and are moving closer to the city we are near. We have 3 young children and 2 older dogs. 
So here is our dilemma. The housing market where we are looking is very competitive and finding a good house in a good neighborhood is tough. We have been looking for a year to move to this town with no luck. Well now we have found 2 houses and just can't decide between them. Both houses are built in the 1950's Here they are

House 1: 2300 sq feet
3 bedrooms, two are a good size, the last is TINY! 9x11 and basically has a view of the roof. 
2.5 bathrooms all need updating. 
updated large kitchen
family room addition with foundation, which includes eating area. 
Formal dining room (important to us)
Living room
2 car garage
Large 3 room basement
Flat yard in front and decent flat yard in back with trees. 

House 2:  2600sq ft
4 bedrooms, 3 of which are good size 1 is fairly small at 10x11
Previous owner put on 4 additions
Has office ( ideal since my husband works from home)
Has small bonus room which i would use for my sewing area. 
2 car  car garage, but under the house and have to walk through entire basement to get upstairs to kitchen , ugh
No front yard - house is very close to the street and built on a retaining wall since the lot is on a hill
Back yard is a large hill that can partially be graded for a swingset
In an ok neighborhood, the street is very hilly and this house is in  the valley of the the 2 hills. 
Master suit addition is amazingly large with huge bathroom, closets and cathedral ceiling.
No formal dining room( but we could make the existing living room into a dining room - needs overhead lighting)
fairly small kitchen that needs to be upgraded (counters are blue)


Overall I like house 1 better because its on the lot we like which is flat and level. Its in a better neighborhood for walking dogs and riding bikes. No matter which way you leave house 2 you are going straight up a hill.But house 2 has been well cared for and the additions are beautiful. So here is the big problem. The owner on house 1 has severely neglected the property and our inspector found that the garage is structurally unsound and needs to be replaced.  I don;t know yet if the current owner will do anything about this or just put it back on the market. 

I do not mind having my boys share a room in house 1 but we are thinking of adding a master suit onto it so we can have more space. 

Both houses are walk-able to good schools. 

Would love to hear your opinion!!

Re: Having trouble deciding between 2 houses....help!

  • Assuming the houses are priced accordingly, not including the garage problem, it does seem like house 1 would be better for a family with children.  Everyone likes yards, but they are extra wonderful for children.  Plus, it sounds like house 1 will have more resale value down the road...especially if you all build an addition on it and update the bathrooms.  And just like you want a yard for your family, whenever you go to resell, I guarantee that is going to be a family who wants a yard also.

    But now the garage issue.  This might be were you all need to consider what you are willing to take on and what you aren't.  It's very possible the seller won't fix it at all, but might be willing to reduce the price.  If the seller is at least willing to reduce the price to cover the majority of the work, it might be a good option for you all.  And another way to buy the house cheaper, but gain more equity right away.

  • I completely agree with @short+sassy! Question for you: is there a price difference, if any, between the two homes?

    Having a nice, flat and usable yard is something that will never, ever depreciate and will only add value to your home. However, the garage is definitely an issue you should bring up to the seller. I would decide among you and your husband how much you are willing to put into this garage financially in a worst-case scenario, and broach the subject of a full repair/replacement or equal value of price reduction with the seller to gauge their reaction. Once you figure out your personal appetite/budget for repairs, you can go from there on whether to counter, accept or just go with the other home.
  • jeanhoward97jeanhoward97
    10 Comments Name Dropper
    member
    edited January 2016
    As short+sassy says if the seller will ready to updating home or if he is ready to sell home with less amount as discussed before, then the first home is better for you. If your children is not ready to share their room in future or you can also think of the rest of their future, you need at least 4 bedrooms home. So 2nd home may be preffrable. Make decision wisely. 
  • As short+sassy says if the seller will ready to updating home or if he is ready to sell home with less amount as discussed before, then the first home is better for you. If your children is not ready to share their room in future or you can also think of the rest of their future, you need at least 4 bedrooms home. So 2nd home may be preffrable. Make decision wisely. 
    OP posted this 7 months ago.  And she hasn't logged on since then.
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