Post # 1
I have had my eye on an old (100 year old) Victorian-style house that has been on the market since about July. Currently I live with my parents as I just finished college and started my career. However, I have no debts. Aside from all of the other factors (such as whether or not I SHOULD try to move out right now, etc.), I recently found out that this home is also available to be rented. The rent would be almost the same price as the mortgage would be if I bought the house, but the reason I feel like renting for a year would be a good idea is because it is an older house and I am worried about the home being a money pit. If I rented, I would have a year or so to get to know the house and decide if I could realistically afford the upkeep of an older house. I haven’t been able to go to a viewing for the house yet, but it looks to be in decent shape in all of the pictures although the outside is entirely wood so that would be a maintenance factor. I guess I am just most afraid of purchasing a home and ending up over my head because of repairs and other things that come up, where if I rented for a year I would have a better idea of what to expect, or I could get out from under it before it is my property. Also, my fiance won’t be finished school for a year, but that really doesn’t matter in this case because the house would be in my name and the monthly payment is the same whether renting or owning. Then again, if I decided to rent for a year then buy, it is kind of like throwing some of the money away. Would you consider renting-to-own in a situation like this?
Post # 2
rel318: Either way, I would get a home inspection done so you know what you are dealing with and what potential costs are around the corner.
Post # 3
rel318: If the owners are selling themselves it might be worth seeing if they would allow you to “rent to own” at least for the first year before purchasing. Roommates and I rented a house for three years and at the beginning of it that was an option our Landlords talked to us about.
Post # 4
Unless you have money to sink into this home outside of downpayment and closing costs, I wouldn’t even think about buying it yet. Are you prepared to deal with renovations if you had to, both cost wise and emotionally? Even buying a newer home can come with issues. Either way, it’s safe to say that a home inspection will need to be done, will likely uncover things that need fixing, and that pictures won’t give you a real idea of issues such as the state of the foundation, electrical, plumbing, roof etc.
Post # 5
Do you have the money for the up front costs? Down payment, closing costs, etc? A home inspection is a must but doesn’t mean it will uncover all of an old houses issues. Is your fiance handy? Will you be able to do home repairs on your own or will you need to hire someone? Things to think of, when was the last time the roof was replaced? Is the electricity/plumbing/heating up to date and working properly? How is the foundation looking? Will you have money left after your mortgage is paid to put into savings for when these repairs/renovations come up? Will you qualify for the whole mortgage on your salary and credit history alone? Keep in mind that a pre-qualify doesn’t mean approval and things will come up in the approval process that they don’t look at in the pre-qualify. You have no debts now, but do you have a credit history to prove you’re mortgage worthy?
Post # 6
rel318: Are they renting it because they haven’t sold it yet? In which case, couldn’t they sell it once you have rented it? I’ve heard that happening anyway, to a friend. But it’s a good idea to rent if you can. I just think any house, let alone a 100 yr old house, will have upkeep. We’ve been in our 73 yr old house for 1.5 yrs and the things we’ve HAD to fix are: 2 burst pipes, added insulation, new roof, innerds of the toilet, had the basement and tub snaked. Houses cost money, but they’re so great!!
Post # 7
I would DEFINITELY rent to own at the very least and perhaps think about looking into a different (newer) home to buy. Unless they have been completely remodeled, old homes are money pits. As much as I love their character!
We bought a house built in 1941 and thankfully a lot of it has already been redone but there are a few things that we need to repair….ie. random old windows that weren’t replaced (they cause very pricey electric and heating bills), an old water heater needed to be replaced, one of the bathrooms has a toilet from the 60’s that probably uses at least 5 gallons per flush (It pains me that we haven’t replaced that yet)…you get the point. Even if the home looks nice and well kept, it will probably need quite a bit of work. I would really urge you to rethink buying a home that old.