Sarah Asks… Should I buy a fixer upper if I can’t afford the house of my dreams?

Maybe. But there’s a lot to consider if you’re thinking of doing this.

Your purchase price will be lower. But you need to factor in the costs of fixing up your new home. Unless the changes you’re considering are minor, don’t guess at the fix-up costs. Have a contractor or another knowledgeable person give you an estimate of what needs to be done and how much it’ll cost before you make an offer to buy.

Can you do the work yourself or will you have to hire someone else to do the work? That will affect the cost of the repairs/improvements. Can you live in the house while the work is being done? If not, you’ll need to factor in the cost of living somewhere else and paying the mortgage on your new fixer upper.

FHA has special loans, called 203(K) loans, specifically designed for people buying a house to fix up — or to rehabilitate a house they already own. But specific conditions apply.

The bottom line: Let’s talk if you’re thinking about buying a fixer upper to make sure we come up with the best solution for you.

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Meet Cheryl!

About Cheryl

As a successful business owner and community leader, Cheryl Braunschweiger is known and respected for getting things done with a degree of skill and enthusiasm that bring out the best in those around her - colleagues, clients and friends. The name of her business, ALMC Mortgage, reflects Cheryl's philosophy and personality. She says it stands for All Loans Must Close –a reflection of her determination to do whatever it takes to serve her clients. Cheryl has been in the mortgage lending business for 20 years. Read More About Cheryl
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