A glance at the Bay Area real estate prices indicates it is certainly becoming a sellers market. While the good old days when a family home could be purchased on a middle-class budget may be passing us by, that does not mean all the deals have dried up. On the contrary, there are still plenty of properties in San Diego and around the Bay Area that provide great bang for your buck and could set you up for years of comfortable living in safe and vibrant areas.
What Is A Fixer-Upper?
We are talking about fixer-uppers. Fixer-uppers is the colloquial term for homes that have come on hard times and not been given the attention they need to remain comfortable abodes. It essentially means previous owners have not been diligent with maintenance and have let anything and everything in the house fall below standardization or even general functionality.
It could mean a wide variety of different situations. Sometimes an older home will have lead pipes and a broken plumbing system. It could mean a home that got hit with a fire and the owner had to default on their mortgage and they lost the house. Or it could be something as minor as an old floor with some mold and a small, dark kitchen that needs to be replaced before anyone would want to live in the home.
So a fixer-upper is often a home that has been abandoned by the previous home owners. These same owners have also decided that, rather than put the money in to fix up the place before selling, the would rather cut their losses and make some profit from the rise in real estate value in the surrounding area.
How Much Will It Cost to Fix a Fixer-Upper?
If you spot some cheap properties on the market, changes are they fall under the category just discussed. What does that mean for you, the prospective homeowner? Well, it means figuring out how much work needs to go into it in order for it to be habitable, and assessing whether this renovation cost makes sense given the asking price of the property.
Keep in mind the average costs of major reno jobs like:
The Kitchen – A new kitchen will cost anywhere between $15,000 and $25,000 once all costs are combined.
New Flooring – New flooring on one floor alone will run between $2,000 and $4,000 depending on the type of floor material you desire.
New Bathroom – These are actually relatively affordable at about $3,000 to $5,000 all costs in.
Electrical work – Any sketchy electrical work will need to be looked at by a certified electrician. The longer the property has been left dormant the higher associated electrical costs will be, so make sure to do a proper survey of the lighting and kitchen hookups before budgeting.
Plumbing – Similar to electrical, plumbing costs could run from a few thousand to the tens of thousands.
These are issues worth considering closely when looking at fixer-upper real estate in the Bay Area.