Buying an old house – every renovator’s dream

Many people make a living from buying old houses and selling them after they renovate them. If you are thrilled about the idea of getting involved into this type of business, then you should act cautiously, because you do not want to end up buying a house you will have difficulties to renovate. Also, it is important to check the costs of the renovations before buying the house, because you do not want to get over the edge with your investments. It is always exciting to start a new project. It does not matter if you buy the house to sell it for income, or if you buy it to transform it into your new house. There are countless possibilities when it comes to renovating an old house. It would not be amazing if you could transform this old house into the one of your dreams?

The location of the house is essential

When you want to buy a house in order to renovate it, you should filter the results according to their location. There are two types of buyers, the ones, who focus on the area where the house is located, and do not pay attention to the condition of the house, and the buyers, who do not pay attention at the street, but want to get a house in a good condition. The best strategy is to find a house in a poor state, but in a good area, because in this way you will find buyers fast after you renovate it. And if you want to keep it for yourself, then you do not want to live in a shady neighbourhood.

Therefore, when buying a house with the purpose to renovate it, it is advisable to buy it on a good street.

The first impression is not the most important one

The majority of old houses listed on sale on the market are quite ugly. You have to imagine how the place will look after you renovate it. The first impression is not the most important one, the vision you have with the place should be a deciding factor. When entering the house it does not matter the way the furniture is arranged and the condition of the carpets. You can expect all the items in the house to break when you touch them. The renovation will bring the beauty of the house to the surface, but before that you need to know for sure if you have a vision with this house and how it will look at the end of the process, or not.

Sometimes, in order to see the beauty of the house all you need is to get rid of the clutter. A clean house will look more appealing than a crowded one.

What budget do you have for this project?

Yes, it is your dream to renovate an old house, but you should not work with a dream. You should make an excel spreadsheet with the expenses you will have during the project. If you only have a vision with the house, but you do not know how much it will cost you, then you should talk with a builder. They will tell you the estimative price of the project and you will have to check if it meets your budget.

 It is important to work with a builder you know and who has the reputation of offering real fixed prices, because many of them discover “unknown expenses’ along the way, and the expenses can quickly increase.

A house that requires a lot of structural work is not worth the effort

You are a beginner, so you should not invest in a property that requires structural work because the repairs will cost you more than the sum you will get when selling the property. Buy one that requires only cosmetic work. You should remove the furniture and clutter from your house. For this, you will need a metallic skip. The Skip Company states that you should contact the skip provider before starting the renovation process, to book one. It is not advisable to get the things out of the house and leave them on the lawn. Place them gradually in the skip, and you can easily clean the property. Ask a builder to assess the structural integrity of the space.

What to check:

  • Are there signs of termites, asbestos and pests?
  • What is the state of the electrical system?
  • Are there signs of movement?
  • Are the floors positioned at the same level?
  • Are the door frames square?
  • Are the walls cracked?

These aspects will help you understand if you are working with a shaky foundation or if you can transform that house into your dream one.

Ask the owner for the contract

There are not few the cases when old houses have limitations when it comes to renovating them. This is why it is advisable to ask the real estate agent to check the paperwork regarding the plans of the house and to ask the owner offer you a copy of the contract. It is important to pay attention to the drainage plan, to know if you can build how you have planned. Also, in case you want to extend the house during renovations you have to check if it contract allows you.

The contract offers details on the height requirements, floor space ration and other similar aspects.

Can you add value to the house?

As stated before, it does not matter if you want to renovate the house to sell it, or to make it your home, your purpose is to increase its value. When you check a house, you should consider if you have the possibility to add value to the property or not. For example, check the attic. Can you use that space to add more rooms to the house? Can you bring inside furniture and appliances to increase the value of the house? Can you install a pool? You should ask these questions yourself when assessing the possible value of a house.

Renovating an old house is not for the ones who get stressed out easily. You should have patience, vision and be open to challenges.


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