Although it feels a little early for it given our lease constraints, we started home shopping in Altoona today in a slightly more serious way. Today, we visted the first house that we actually went inside. We took several pictures [link since removed since we didn’t buy this house -ed] but even as many as we took, I still want to have taken more.
House summary: Built in 1983, it’s a 3 bedroom, 3 bath home with oversized 2 car garage on a 100’x120′ lot on the corner of Lloyd St and E. 22nd Ave. It has attic storage, city water/sewer, a wet bar, a hot tub and was re-shingled in the fall of 2004. There are 2 decks and a gazebo. There’s a privacy fence around the rear of the property. There is 200 amp electrical service. They are asking $149,500. I still don’t know the real estate market in this area well enough to know if that’s good or not. Since Albemarle county just re-appraised my townhouse for $193,000, it feels like a good deal. It’s hard to say, though.
Pros and cons as I think of them, in no particular order.
<th align="left"> Cons </th>
<td> 70’s aesthetic </td>
<td> Small bedrooms </td>
<td> dark bedrooms </td>
<td> <strong>huge</strong> wet bar </td>
<td> large windows mean harder to heat </td>
<td> High Taxes compared to more expensive but older homes </td>
<td> Wooded lot not part of property </td>
<p> Other Miscelaneous info:<br />2 heat zones: 1 upstairs, 1 downstairs; Central vacuum system; Gas hot water baseboard heat ; No central air; Wood or coal fireplace with heatalator; Funky mood lighting for the downstairs area; </p> <p> All in all, I like it. There’s a lot I’d want to change about it, most of which I feel confident I could do. The primary disadvantages that I can see are that the bedrooms are small and kind of dark. I’m not a huge fan of the white brick, though I’m sure I could get accustomed to it. As much as I love the idea of having a wet bar in entertainment space, the bar itself is huge. It feels like it could be a proper pub. As I said, there’s a real 70s/early 80s aesthetic. I would want to replace the carpet (maybe put hardwood flooring in the kitchen/dining area), re do much of the kitchen and pretty much all of the bathrooms. So much of the house seems geared toward relaxation and entertaining, it’s a shame that the bedrooms aren’t more luxurious. </p> <p> Still, we need to do a lot more shopping here. I wish we could somehow put a hold on the house until we’ve had a chance to look around and do some comparison. And I wish we could get it descreetly (and cheaply) appraised to get a better sense of it’s value in this market. I’m simply thankful that the market is soft enough, and that it’s a FSBO, as that should keep it from getting snapped up too quickly. </p>