by Dylan Taft
on Wednesday, January 23rd, 2013 at 4:45pm.
Ulster County Real Estate |10 Do's and Don'ts
When looking at Ulster County real estate there are certain things you should do to get a clearer picture of a property's condition. Asking the right questions is key, but don't forget to look throughout the property for indications of what parts of the home are in great shape, and what areas may need improvements or updates upon purchasing. As part of Taft Street Realty's ongoing series about the 15 things to look for when viewing homes for sale, here are a few more helpful do's and don'ts for Ulster County real estate buyers.
Buried Oil Tank Evidence
Ah, the infamous buried oil tank! We all fear it! So what are the signs? Which homes commonly have buried tanks? How does a buyer know if there was one or not? Could it be you have an old one buried in your yard and you don’t even know it!? Not to worry, most good inspectors can smell a buried tank a mile away (not literally of course!) But there are signs you can spot; you just need to know what to look for. Is the house you like very old but the oil tank is new? Always ask questions. "Where was the old tank?" you might want to ask the seller’s agent. Do you see old copper oil lines leading to nowhere? Are there fill and vent pipes out in the yard? Maybe there is electric heat now but you find an old boiler in the basement. The bottom line on buried oil tanks: look for the signs and ask questions...
Condition of Appliances (washer, dryer, refrigerator, stove/range, dishwasher, etc.)
First, make sure the appliances are even part of the sale. If they are, then take a good look at them and determine if they are worth saving after you buy the home. If the price you pay includes appliances, make sure they work. Also make sure you know what the bank requires with respect to appliances in order for you to get your loan. Knowing which appliances work and which don’t will help you bargain with the seller, especially if the seller offered the appliances in working order. If you know you will be doing lots of laundry then make sure the inspector doesn’t forget to check the washer and dryer! Inspect what you expect!
Size, Flow, and Condition of the Kitchen
The bigger the kitchen and the more cabinets there are, the more costly the remodel or renovation. The condition of the kitchen is very important, as for many this is the heart of the home. I bring this up as something to pay attention to, so that when your negotiating an offer this is factored in. Kitchen renovations can range from the $10k spruce up all the way up to $100k and beyond depending on the house and location. Remember, all your renovations must be in line and be supported by the neighborhood the house is in. Don’t over-improve or you could get hurt come re-sale time…
Number of Bathrooms and Their Condition
Bathrooms, like kitchens, are a significant portion of a home’s value. Look for the signs (cracked tiles, leaks, old toilets, old or ultra-small shower or tub stalls, out dated vanities, etc.) and determine if you could live with the existing bathroom or if you feel it will need immediate attention before moving in. Factor all of this into your offer and negotiations.
Windows & Doors - Their Number and Condition
Knowing the condition of the windows and doors is very important so that if they need to be replaced you can also factor that in. The good news about doors and windows is that you could do one window (or door) at a time and space things to fit your schedule and budget. Point being, if the house has a lot of windows make sure you are aware of the cost to replace, especially if they are old. New windows add value but can be a costly expense, and so it’s important to be aware of that and budget accordingly.
Helpful Ulster County Real Estate Tips & Advice...