Lower Costs Of Estate Sale Properties Could Be Offset By Renovation Expenses
While the price tag of an estate sale may have buyers jumping for joy, they need to understand the big picture before they jump at the opportunity. NY1's Real Estate reporter Jill Urban filed the following report.
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Any buyer willing to renovate knows an estate sale tends to offer great value, and the properties are usually the perfect fixer-uppers. But there are pros and cons to buying an home from the family of someone who has passed.
Irene Grassi of Stribling and Associates in Greenwich Village says buyers need to understand exactly what can be involved.
"Usually they are in poor condition. The kitchen and bathrooms need to be gut-renovated. Most of the time they need everything, so you're looking at months of renovation," says Grassi.
Because of this, buyers need to bring their imagination to a showing. Often times, these homes do not show well, especially after the items in the home have been picked over by the heirs.
Estate sales are often priced low to help make up for the cost of the renovation, but it's important to find out in advance how much that renovation will be to know if the total cost is still within budget.
Bring in contractors to get some estimates and find out how long it will take, because a buyer might have to carry two places during the construction.
Often times, families looking to settle an estate want to sell these homes quickly, but buyers should know that these types of sales rarely happen fast.
"It could take longer for there to be an offer accepted because there are more people involved in terms of the heirs," says Grassi. "They sometimes disagree and they need to come to an agreement together with their estate attorney about the offer and in some case it can take weeks and even months."
The closing may take longer as well because there is more documentation involved with the estate. Because the heirs may not have lived there, getting simple answers about the home or the building could also take longer.
It is a good idea to work with a broker and a real estate attorney who are familiar with these types of transactions. It is also good to ask the seller’s broker up front about the family situation to help manage expectations.