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Saturday, August 20, 2016

Are we getting close?

This is my house for sale. More than thirty showings, some questions (monthly utilities, that kind of thing), no offers yet. This house is a leap of faith for most lookers, I'm sure. We're surrounded city dwellers on forty foot subdivision lots, city sewer and water, selling a house with a well and a septic system. 



There is feedback from almost every visit, often amusing. My house is more than seventy five years old, built by the original owner.He and his son dug the basement by hand. People were shorter then, on the whole. Like the house I grew up in, tall men like my dad and my brothers had to duck at the end of the basement staircase, to avoid hitting their head on the steps of the staircase above going upstairs. When we bought the house I purchased three brass figurines and hung them on those two steps. The first riser has two ducks. The last has a goose. 

I digress, a bit. One couple loved the house, but they were tall people. I would not like to live in that house and be that tall, so that was reasonable. One man loved it; his wife hated it. You know who won that one.



One couple thought the back yard too dangerous for their boys. Now, that's funny. The back yard does go downhill, and ends in a shallow creek past those trees. My oldest grandchild is twenty odd years old, so that's how long I've had children playing out here. Once Emily jumped the creek, decided she couldn't jump back and cried until the rest sent me out to talk her back. A lot of sled riding happened in that yard.



I took this by accident. Beautiful day, nice yard. That's the garden over there. Actually, I was out on a mission. The realtor called and said someone viewing the house today was concerned about a foundation crack that appeared never to have been addressed.




I could not visualize a crack where she said the client said it was. Back in the 40's, when the house was built, it was the custom to put a skim of concrete over the foundation blocks. An affectation. There are some cracks in the skim, and it's even wearing back to the foundation blocks in places.



Then I went around the corner to the north wall, and saw that crack with fresh eyes. I know it's in the realtor's notes, but it can be a heart stopper. It was the door to the well house for the original well. I considered keeping the well house as a sort of fruit cellar, but in the end it went. The door is bricked in and covered by drywall on the basement side, and concrete on the outside. 

We'll see if someone is brave enough to make an offer on a house in the country, contingent on the results of a crack test.

30 comments:

  1. I would have liked that back yard for my kids when they were younger. It looks like a nice place for a family, hope it sells before winter.

    Betty

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  2. Hari OM
    So it's just the newer concrete fill-in which has cracked down where the door jamb was? That's not structural. Not pretty, but not structural. No doubt they'll look to knock a couple of 00s off the offer. ... but let there at least be an offer, and soon!!! YAM xx

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  3. I hope you get an offer soon. It looks like a home. A home for living in. Laughter, tears, and all points in between.

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  4. I agree with Yamini - that is what we experts call a 'superficial' crack. You can quote me on that, but you cannot use my insurance.

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  5. Selling a house is so much fun, love your backyard. My husband won't even look at a property unless it's connected to water in some way.

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  6. My fingers are crossed that someone can't live without your house very soon.

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  7. Buyers see things with different eyes. they see impending disaster. I'm glad all I was selling was the land for it's value as the house was in bad shape by the time we sold the city property.

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  8. I'm still wishing you luck for a speedy sale. I know you cared for it lovingly and someone will see that.

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  9. Wishing you a speedy sale. It is frustrating waiting for an offer. Let it be soon!

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  10. I hope it sells soon for you, waiting is so hard.

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  11. That's what inspections are for. Tell them you won't charge extra for the crack. If that doesn't do it tell them as is, conventional loan only. The right one will come along. I am surprised you are getting feedback. I never heard one.

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  12. People who watch HGTV want everything today. It took my daughter 6 months to sell a fairly new home that was in good shape. People complained about the smallest things and wanted to pay way below the asking price. She finally sold it just in time to make settlement on her new house.

    For some reason, I could not get all the pictures you posted but I did see the beautiful backyard. I hope you get an offer soon.

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  13. We were messed about by a set of buyers for 5 months the last time we sold a house. We told the estate agent we were going to put in tenants instead. Lo and behold, the buyers exchanged contracts 2 days later. I think it pays to keep the upper hand.

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  14. It is always a worry selling a house here too Joanne - hope you get somebody soon and then you can forget all about it.

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  15. You need a sensible person to come along like us lot who know a superficial crack when we see one. This house of mine has a few, nothing to worry about. I bought it without a survey even. The seller had waited two years for someone like me to come along. People are brainwashed into horror and fear about everything these days. I hope you don't have to wait too long.

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  16. septc, well, hand built, right up our alley, we now have city water and a septic but first house we have had, even in Florida we had a septic and well. that crack just needs some filler cement and a fresh coat of paint over the foundations all around. and living on a creek, heaven. fingers crossed for your quick sale

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  17. oh not sure but you could get a well test of water quality and have the septic pre pumped and provide both of those to potential sellers sometimes those will encourage buyers.

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  18. What a great house! The right person is going to come along and will be so happy to buy it. Buying and selling houses is crazy making. Have the realtor list the yard as "sled friendly." Leave photos of your grandkids playing in the yard in 4 seasons below the kitchen cabinets where, hopefully, there is a view of the yard. Now that summer is ending, leave some photos of the flowers in the gardens, too. We sold our house in winter, so I left a photo board filled with my best shots of the flowers and perennial beds so people could understand they were getting a place with mature gardens. Capture their imaginations.

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    1. The pictures are a good idea. I have a short history of the house that I wrote, and the well statistics out on the Hoosier for examination, but pictures are a great idea.

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  19. I agree that HGTV is making some people into experts in the home improvement field. I love the fact that your home was built by the original owner. Our old house has some floors so "wonky" that a marble would roll across the room. -Jenn

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    1. The cats all knew to bat the ping pong balls toward the front door, to watch them roll back down and bounce off the hearth and other obstacles.

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  20. Hopefully the right buyer will coma along soon.

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  21. If anything, that backyard is a selling point for kids - a big grassy yard with adventure on the other side.

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  22. I love your backyard. I would love to have it behind my house. My cousin sold his house last year and the comments made my people were at times appalling. If you don't want it, you don't want it, but no need to make disparaging comments.

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  23. Our Illinois house was in the country. We had a well and septic tank. We were surrounded by a peach orchard. Everyone was jealous because I lived in the white house on the hill. It was very pretty, but far too much house for two people--one of whom is mentally ill and couldn't deal with guests in the house. The property was wasted on us, but after I left, X and my replacement sold the house. I hope the new owners enjoy it. It would have been a wonderful place to raise our children. I think your house is beautiful, and the right family will come along to appreciate it.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. A peach orchard sounds like heaven to me :)

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  24. Duck, duck, goose ... priceless :)

    It only takes one buyer who loves your home and it will be sold. Let's hope they find you soon.

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  25. It is a nice house and I like the yard. Hopefully, you will get a buyer soon.

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  26. Going through the process of trying to sell your house can be time-consuming, emotional, and generally overwhelming to deal with. I can only imagine what you’ve gone through by have the house showed so many times and still never receiving a single offer. It seems that you must be attracting the wrong kind of buyers for this to keep happening.

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  27. Your home is beautiful and original, and I'm particularly taken with the garden. I understand people's concerns about young children playing near water, but there's usually a solution. Put up a fence or supervise them! As for your crack, it certainly adds character, but maybe people are worried about the extent and costs of remedial work. Best of luck with the sale!

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