Having your own home is a great life goal and you don’t have to spend hugely upfront to have one. Buying your first home is an overwhelming task. The search for an affordable house and lot will require you to look online for answers. Many will be touted as affordable or cheap, but what are actually affordable? Affordable is a relative term and it depends on your finances. Let’s take the house and lots in Cavite as an example.
The images above are taken from Lamudi. They’ll show up if you search for affordable house and lots in Cavite via Google.
The term affordable depends on the house and lot’s size, location, and features. You need to look at those when you’re buying a new house. A cheap house situated in a hard-to-access location would just cause you more headaches than comfort. This is why realtors always say “location, location, location”.
There are other ways to buy an affordable house and lot and that is thru alternative housing options.
A very good example of an alternative housing option is buying a fixer-upper. In real estate talk, a fixer-upper is a property that may require repairs such as redecoration, reconstruction, or redesign. It can also be lived in or used as is.
It’s a popular choice for buyers that are looking for a starter home on a budget. Though cheap as it may seem, first-time buyers often underestimate the amount and cost of repairs that will make the home livable or salable.
How to Buy a Fixer-Upper House Hassle-Free
You just don’t buy any fixer-upper house that seems affordable. According to Tara Mastroeni of Freshome, you should only buy if it makes sense, so start off with buying based on resale value.
These are the 3 simple but important things to consider when buying a fixer-upper:
– You can change a lot in a fixer-upper home, but one thing that’s permanent is location. A home that’s close to schools or malls, have easy access to anywhere you want to go, and has privacy from busy roads and commercial structures is a great start.
– It should be functional. A functional layout is something that can easily let you move around and do daily functions without altering the layout of the house such as adding or taking down walls.
– This needs a keen eye as structural damage can elude you until it’s too late. You should look for cracks in the walls, sloping floors, electrical problems, molds or termites, and leak spots as those are red flags that will tell you if the home needs extensive repairs that could send your expenses skyrocketing.
To make sure you don’t go over your budget, you need to identify which things will need fixing as you inspect the house. If it’s your first time doing inspections, you should hire an inspector to do it for you as they can check for all the structural issues listed above.
Once you figure out what repairs your potential fixer-upper house needs, you should now identify which problems you can DIY. It will save you some money before hiring contractors to do the rest for you.
For starters you can:
- Paint the house;
- strip the wallpapers;
- repair hanging cabinets;
- repair walls;
- replace the windows;
- replace the tiling,
- and more.
More DIY, less money spent. Just make sure that you can really do these DIY projects on your own. Jobs such as roofing repairs and electrical work should be left to the contractors. Just remember all of these and you can shave the costs down to a minimum.
Patience and Expenses
It takes a huge amount of time and commitment to renovate a fixer-upper house. This is no problem if you’re up for a good DIY project and if you consider it as part of your free time, but if you can’t leave out your other tasks, it’s best to leave the fixing up to a contractor. Be it DIY or contractor work, it’ll definitely take up your time so be prepared.
As for commitment, if a fixer-upper is going to be your main home, you’ll have to live somewhere else while your fixer-upper is in the works; take some days off to work on your house or supervise contractors, and spend more money eating out while you don’t have a working kitchen.
If these things are alright with you, then everything will be worth it in the end.
Get Your Own Fixer-Upper
With all these in mind, you can flip a fixer-upper to have a better resale value and even live in one that would be the envy of others. Going back to searching for affordable house and lots in Cavite online, you can now tell which house can give you better value despite being old and used. Just give it some TLC, devote some time and patience, and you’ll have a personalized yet affordable first home.