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No Such Thing as a 'Free' House?

April 01, 2001|SUSAN CARRIER

Is moving a house for you? Consider these factors:

Land: Finding a suitable, affordable site can be challenging. Utility hookup feasibility, grading, architectural suitability and lot size must be considered.

Costs: The cost to move a house can range from a few thousand dollars for a simple short haul to $40,000 or $50,000. Size and height of the structure and distance all affect the price. Add the costs of moving overhead utility and cable wires, building the foundation, hooking up utilities, reconstructing and rehabilitating: The cost of a "free house" soars.

Hidden costs: For some, it's the discovery of asbestos or lead paint. For others, it's finding out they have to reframe the entire house.

Regulations and permits: Physically moving a house is a snap for movers. The trail of paperwork is another matter. Many homeowners find that they could have built a new house faster, and cheaper, than moving an existing one.

Financing: In 1990, at least three lending institutions specialized in house-moving loans. Today, there are none.

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