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Tips to Homeowners

July 20, 1986|Armand L. Fontaine

Question: Is it a good idea to have a home inspected by a contractor prior to purchasing it?

Answer: It's a very good idea to have a home inspected thoroughly by a licensed contractor or by a home inspection service prior to purchase. The fee usually is $150 to $200.

Many lenders require this inspection before granting a home loan. The American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI), in Washington, D.C., suggests that the firm you hire to make an inspection not be the one to repair the problems it might find. This ensures impartiality of an inspection and the estimated cost of repairs.

Q: I am thinking of having a sizable amount of repairs and remodeling done on my home. However, I am not certain that I would be able to recover my money when I sell the house. Should I only have those repairs done that are economically feasible?

A: Do you think about the resale price of a car or a refrigerator when you buy one? The answer is probably not.

You buy these products because the satisfaction and the quality of life that they will provide. Therefore, your primary consideration is what you enjoy and what you would like to have in your home.

Certainly it can be ridiculous to put $100,000 into a $150,000 average home. It probably would be better for you not to upgrade that home, but to move to a larger and better home in an area where the property values are in line.

However, if you are thinking that you might not be able to recapture the cost of adding a spa or an extra room to your home, then you should consider that time will usually forgive most of these expenditures, and you will have had a home which you enjoy, and an equity which has increased.

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