By now, you've likely watched a reality TV show about buying a fixer upper home and thought to yourself, "that looks pretty easy." It is indeed exciting to mull over the prospect of making a home feel fresh and new again, but what the real reality will reveal is that fixer upper homes require much more time and money than their television slots allow.

Below are four questions to ask before you decide to purchase a fixer upper home in Wilmington DE or Southeastern PA:

What are the costs?
It can be a thrill to think about what a home in need of repair could be, but it is essential to consider all costs when buying a fixer upper in Wilmington, Newark or the surrounding areas. The last thing you want is to be surprised by mounting bills when the deal is done. In addition to the purchase price, look into costs like monthly maintenance, taxes, insurance, and how much equity you may have in the home once all of the work is completed. It never hurts to consider resale right off the bat!

Is everything sound?
You will want to have an inspector come in and check if the structural elements, as well as running systems are in working order or if they need replaced. The inspector will be able to tell you what needs replaced immediately and what can stand to wait. Remember, it never hurts to ask the age of systems like electrical and how much longer they have left. If you need a recommendation for an inspector in the area, your real estate agent is a wealth of resources! 

​What is the scope of work?
One of your next steps when buying a fixer upper in Wilmington DE and Southeastern PA will be getting bids from contractors. Reality TV shows can make it seem simple to tear down walls, but there is so much more involved than what is actually shown. Gather bids from several contractors before choosing one and be sure to check references. While cost-effectiveness is important, trustworthiness will always play a major part.

Are there tax incentives?
Certain renovation projects come with tax incentives, depending on the work and the area in which the home is located. After all, you will be boosting the value of the property! Check which incentives may be available to you once you've completed all work.

Do not hesitate to give the Kat Geralis Home Team a call today for more information about buying a home in Chester County or Delaware County or for a list of available homes in the area!

Katina Geralis
Wilmington, DE Real Estate Expert
Keller Williams Realty

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