Friday, August 15, 2008

The inspection

We scheduled the inspection for Tuesday afternoon. David has an inspector named Fred. I met David and Fred out at the house around 4:00. They'd been there for about an hour already and had walked through most of the house. My property manager, Kevin, who I'd never met, was there too. he was trying to figure out what we could charge for the place and what work needed to be done. We figured we'd paint the whole inside, put up some quarter-round molding, and do a few other odds and ends. We'd try to get $2000/month for it, although once he realized that it only had one bathroom he backed off that estimate a bit.
We're still trying to decide whether we should put some sort of finish coat on the hardwood (oak?) floors, or just let them be. And he's supposed to get back with me on how much rent a bathroom would add. And I have to figure out how much it would cost to add a second bathroom.

Anyway, I met David and Fred out at the house. Fred is always full of bad news. This is the fourth house he's inspected for me, and he always seems to take a perverse glee in delivering the bad news...he started with a waste pipe in the basement that had leaked and then resealed with tar. I asked if we could get the seller to fix that. David said..."umm, you better tell him about the roof Fred." That seemed foreboding. They had already decided that the roof needed to be replaced. Fortunately, David "knows a guy" who can do it cheap. We'll ask them to pay for it and use David's guy. After they tell me about the roof, Fred proceeds to drag me to the garage, and explains that the garage door with old springs is a deathtrap, because if a spring breaks, it's very dangerous. Fortunately, Fred knows a guy who can replace it cheap.
Fred then shows me the area outside from where water can flow into the house, and recommends that I do some landscaping. Build a block retaining wall, and put a french drain behind it to divert the water.
Sounds expensive to me.
Neither Fred nor David knows a guy. They suggest picking some day laborers up outside the Home Depot for cheap.
No thanks.
Then the end of inspection ritual...Fred always says "How should I write it, David?" and so far, David has always replied "Right it hard, Fred." The upshot is that we asked the sellers to put on a new $5700 roof.
On the way out the door, David notices that my truck is dented. Fortunately, David knows a guy. He can fix it for cash. It's good to have colleagues who "know a guy."


jjssww said...

dude, nice work. I have to say, it's interesting to read about. I sold my property last Oct just before things got bad.

The mortgage was always higher when I looked because I was not owner/occupant. I can't swear to it, but I think it was probably a whole point higher. I also went with a 5/1arm. Had the house for 3 years and let go.

DG said...

Thanks for your comment! Sounds like you made a good move to get rid of your place when you did!