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What would you do? Best place I could think to put this topic.

Heres my situation, looking for a house to rent in my hometown as my girlfriend and I have entertained moving away in a few coming years. Rent for a standard 2/1 home in my part of GA is $1000 a month for a decent house. With not looking to buy now we have decied to rent. Well weve found alot but nothing we would pay for, being picky I guess. Then today I stop on at an old house maybe 40s to 50's era farm home that is for rent on a lot with a newer ranch home thats been for rent sometime near where we currently live. Stop and alked throught it as some jerk had kicked the front door in. No vandalism but needs repairs to kitchen floor a few walls, ceiling and bathroom would need new fixtures, old one would work but I have a plumber/electrican/hvac friend who can get great deals on drop ins, toilets, sinks, etc.

The house is way cool, tin roof which needs replacing, hardwoods, double fireplace, half in kitchen and half in great room, screened in rocking chair front porch, large utility room with w/d hookups, its on gas and is sided with aluminum siding. Now...

Call the owner, he was trying to sell or rent the place, I brought up the point of doing repairs per lowering rent or reimbursement. he said he wants to go with the new style aluminum roofing and pvc the plumbing, its on a well I believe. It needs some TLC but has huge character and would be a great place as wee love old homes.

The owner says he could reimburse cost on materials, free rent, have the roof and plumbing done and ask what he wants a month or we can repair. He only wants $500 month and sais he'll negotiate, of course all would be signed contracts with notary before anything but he seemed like he would hate to see it go downhill and be bulldozed, which its no where near that stage, but hes trying to sell the acerage.

I know it has problems, but patchig the roof and havin the utlities turned on and its liveable but not pretty. What should I expect, i know it has to have termites, is it worth it, again Im only renting, health concerns? If its clearly salvageable maybe the potetial to buy for low low, renovate, live there and pay it off then make a bundle on resale and buy house at beach then move? Hey just ideas, tell me about the house Im looking at, your advice, opinions, sorry if my spelling and words are crap, im short oon time and speed typing. Thakks in advance


Re: What would you do? Best place I could think to put this topic.

oh, btw, the house is struct. sound, sit s on concrete foudation with stone trim, floors are solid with walktrough, no leaning, just needs tlc

needs new roof its old tin

Re: What would you do? Best place I could think to put this topic.

Personally ... keep looking for something else .... otherwise if you decide to go with this one .... good luck.

Re: What would you do? Best place I could think to put this topic.


You say nothing about the size of this house, the level of insulation (or lack thereof), condition of windows,etc. Who's paying the heat/cooling bill?

How's the quality of water from the well? Has it been tested recently?

I know that it's easy to get charmed by old houses...and there's certainly nothing inherently "wrong" about that (BTDT, too)...but...
without more info and/or pics...

It kinda sounds like the landlord has nothing (or little) to lose and everything to gain by having you live there so-called free and fixing the place up for him. Sounds like it is currently in a state where it is not really rentable. (There is a reason why this house is currently sitting empty...if you catch my drift.)

You would become his live-in fix-it guy and with every completed improvement...his property is worth more than the rent he swapped to get it. That is certainly what he is hoping anyway. Bottom line...be careful when you agree about what shall be done to swap for a month's rent.

If he's a fair guy and you are decently skilled, it might work out fine. If not, then somebody is going to come out on the losing end of the proposition. Hard feelings will ensue. On both sides perhaps. And big utility bills to boot...perhaps.

Off with the rose colored glasses and have another look. ;)

Edit: Are you tooled up for this? If not, add the cost of the tools to the cost of "free" rent.... even if you will use them for yourself later on down life's trail. Spending money on tools now that you *might* use on your own house in another 5 or 10 years....is still a current expense. (You can't have the money in the bank drawing interest or being used to pay off loans/credit cards......and invested in tools at the same time. If you have to borrow money to buy those tools and pay interest on that...so much the worse.)

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