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Home Buying Story of Josh
Josh is a home buyer in Washington, DC and has been kind enough to allow us to listen in as Daniel Odio helps him find a home.
Here's the audio from a recent house-hunting expedition:
Here is a transcription of the audio with Josh, a client looking for a new home in Washington, DC:
DROdio: This one has been fully renovated according to the listing so it should be in pretty good shape, but we'll see.
Josh: Screens don't fit the window, that's always a good sign.
DROdio: So are you bummed about the last one or do you feel like you made the right decision?
Josh: I am not afraid of a fixer upper, but it was just like a lot of work and I wasn't that excited about the location so when you combine the two it was just more than I could handle price wise.
DROdio: I definitely want you to be comfortable. I don't know why they design these lockboxes like this. This is in need of a good paten, because like the key is, I can't turn the lockbox to get the key out, because it's on this side. Note to self, when designing lockboxes don't make the buyers agent have to use a pair of pliers to get the key out. You heard me speaking to Josh, another client. Josh has kindly offered to allow me to record him as he goes through the buying process. He put an offer on a property in Capital Hill in Washington D.C., which is where are we now and that property needed a lot of work so he decide to cancel the contract after we've done the inspection. It needed about thirty thousand dollars worth of work. So we cancelled the contract on that one and now we're looking again. Now we're in North West D.C. We were in Southeast D.C. before on Capital Hill. So we'll see how things go this time. It really has been completely redone huh? They said that the back driveway is going to be concrete that was in the listing. And they are probably going to put the frig right there I guess. So let me know if you have any questions, okay? I don't know the price off hand. I think it was 449 maybe.
Josh: This is probably the one that was probably a little bit pricey.
DROdio: I want to say it was 449.
Josh: A little bit more than I wanted to pay or on the list.
DROdio: It's obviously been completely redone, which is good.
Josh: Do you have a sheet of paper I can borrow?
DROdio: Sure, you want to right some notes?
DROdio: I'm sure they'll be finishing the lawn. They said they were going to do a concrete driveway and I guess they put grass in. What do you think?
Josh: It's nice. A bit too pricey. (audio fades)
DROdio: You never know until you try. I mean we can look at all of them today and then you can kind of decide if you want to put an offer on one and even it's too low, you just never know until you try.
Josh: Nick was saying on one of them, one I really wanted to see (audio fades) a little too run down, it needs a little TLC.
DROdio: Oh yeah, anytime a listing says it needs TLC generally speaking
Josh: It's really bad?
DROdio: It's really bad.
Josh: What is it when it's a shell?
DROdio: Then they'll say shell.
Josh: So I'd think TLC must not be that bad, but then...
DROdio: Well I mean we don't know we can definitely look, but usually when they say needs a little TLC they are like warning. There's this whole subculture of realtor speak.
Josh: What is an as is one, does that mean there is something structurally wrong with it?
DROdio: It just would mean that either there is something wrong with it and the seller doesn't want to fix or it might be banked owned.
Josh: It was right on South Carolina, just a couple of blocks up from Pennsylvania.
DROdio: Yeah, so we are going to see this one on Sherman next.
Josh: I think there are two on Sherman. There are like a bunch on Sherman and now I see why.
DROdio: 3217 Sherman. We'll go see the two Sherman's next.
Josh: There are three right all a round the corner from each down G Street. I am just interested to see why the prices are so different, because they are all two bedroom, two bath. And they went from 350 to 490.
DROdio: Southwest is a very interesting area with the new stadium right around the corner.
Josh: They are ugly as sin on the outside. I've seen some of the listings for them and they're not that bad inside.
DROdio: So you don't mind living this far up in terms of getting to work on the Metro?
Josh: No, busy road.
DROdio: Yeah, it is a busy road.
Josh: What does it say about the neighbors, Direct TV dishes and two broken windows. This was what 3217?
DROdio: 3217 Sherman. 451 here, but I think they, I don't know if they dropped it from this or not. It wasn't that long ago, 69 days on the market.
Josh: I think the other two just dropped.
DROdio: They dropped the price to 449. Probably just wanted to have it below 450 for people who were searching up to 450.
DROdio: They were saying you could turn this into a bedroom back here if you wanted to, which I suppose is true, although it would really cut off your front space, but you could.
Josh: Bedroom, living room, because you don't have the stairs taking up.
DROdio: Definitely very long and narrow.
Josh: You have a lot of wasted space it seems, because it's so long. House seems bigger on the second floor than the first. Because it's one long room it seems narrower. The living room seems pretty big upstairs.
DROdio: How would you compare this one to the one you just saw?
Josh: I like this one better. It had a basement that's a nice thing. The other one in the basement you could already rent out, like complete. It had a bathroom to the rooms.
DROdio: I think it was just a little bit more expensive than this one.
Josh: Go to the next one. I just wonder how bad this road is like at rush hour.
DROdio: Yeah, I'm sure this road gets pretty busy.
Josh: One thing like when you want to get out of town like from up here it's going to take a while. Not anywhere near a major highway.
DROdio: That is one real nice thing about the capital hill area. Just so easily get into Virginia
Josh: My friend was telling me keep looking and I just saw like four more for sale signs go up. I'm like yeah and they're all six hundred thousand. Or they are all ones that I looked at the last round. They are all that cluster right there.
DROdio: 3120, this one.
Josh: Our neighbors have great colors. I think I like this one better just because you're two blocks closer to the Metro. But too long a walk, but closer than the other one.
DROdio: This one's got a basement. Yeah, they're still working on it.
Josh: Actually wider in the last one, because of the way the floor plan it seems larger.
DROdio: It's definitely wider to consider this part of it. Yeah, it's definitely wider. Seal broke in the window. Oh yeah, it's got a crack.
Josh: Nice yard though. Yeah, you could fit three cars in that back yard.
Josh: That's probably these guys putting in this fence. This is a huge grass lot right in the middle. I like the back of this one better than the last one. It's cramped in. Yeah, you could have a nice deck and you could have parking for plenty of cars. This wall has to be, put a bearing in it, because they closed off the kitchen. It's kind of weird at the front when you have a dead end of walls. Basement ceiling is like right here.
DROdio: A lot of these older properties in D.C., they have very low ceiling in the basements.
Josh: The ceiling is finished so the pipes in there and everything. They actually had put in a new floor, which I don't know if that's a good thing to do. I haven't seen the bathroom down there. The bathroom actually has headroom, but the floor takes like a drop. Upstairs is so weird. This is an addition, but they didn't change the rooms at all. Just two bedroom windows just look out into a porch. The basement and the first floor a lot, the second floor it has one of those funky windows, skylights that's like open vents to the outside.
DROdio: So if you had to choose between the two, the three you've seen so far what one would you rank the highest?
Josh: I don't know. I think the first one it's a little too, and it seems like a pretty sketchy block for the last block. But these two are on the main road next to a turquoise house. I like this for the basement.
DROdio: Versus the last one.
Josh: The last one had central air. But this one has bigger yard and a wider house. I'd have to have the prices in front of me too.
DROdio: Let me tell you right now. You ready? This one is 427,9. The first one was 439,9 the Columbia Road. We just came from was 449. The one we just came from a minute ago was the most expensive.
Josh: This is like the house I put the offer on, like all that stuff is done. I think this would be the one I would go with. How long is this one, is this one of the new ones on the market?
DROdio: This one has been on for, hold on. Six days. The one that we are about to go to on 10th Street, which is the last one 2235, has been on for 29 days.
Josh: How much is that one?
DROdio: That one is 439. That one is going to be a little closer down to the city.
Josh: Yeah, I'll just come out here at rush hour to see what the traffic is like. It kind sucks that there is no trees in the front or trees even. I could always plant like a small tree in little things here and there. I was looking, the one house on St. Carolina that needs the TLC, ridiculous deep front yard and the back of the house is on the alley. It didn't even have parking. That was definitely location would come first. And that place you could even put in a garage if you really wanted to. Room for like a nice shed.
DROdio: Oh you're right next to Howard. I mean you got a great rental market here. If you ever decide to rent later on down the road.
Josh: Well that's the thing with these slightly higher prices, mortgage will be a little bit tougher. I mean I can still afford it. It's small.
DROdio: Very small back yard. Just a little bit of a triangle of a back yard. It's a lot smaller, a lot smaller.
Josh: There's not even a bathtub.
DROdio: You do want to have AC?
Josh: I don't know.
DROdio: AC costs about fifteen to twenty thousand dollars usually to install.
Josh: That's what I was thinking that might be a good three years down the road to save up for I think. Or a year down the road if I get off my lazy butt and start working overtime. Rather than starting before the season gets real busy, but then no, I wasn't quite on the ball. But it's like at the same time there's so many new houses that popped out in the last week.
DROdio: Yeah in the Spring it's a double edged sword, because you have a lot more people looking, but there's a lot more inventory so. Alright. So you like the second Sherman one the best, but did that one not have Central AC?
Josh: That was radiators.
DROdio: Yeah, you probably have to pay fifteen to twenty to get AC in there.
Josh: But I would think that would be money you would get back when you sell it.
DROdio: Having AC in the property where a lot of the neighbors don't is typically a good differentiator.
Josh: Put like a lot of equipment on the roof. It probably wouldn't even be a concern there.
DROdio: You have such a big back yard you wouldn't need to.
Josh: There's probably room in the basement for the pump.
DROdio: You wouldn't even necessarily need to put in heating if you keep the radiator heating and there's a special kind of AC delivery system that uses very small flexible piping or tubing. Have you ever seen properties that have like little round holes for the AC?
Josh: Yeah, I've seen it.
DROdio: Those will deliver cool air, but they won't deliver hot air. They don't work well for hot air, but they work for cool air. So the radiator heating, actually tends to work pretty well. That would be a lot cheaper as well, because then you don't have to put in big ductwork and you can just put your flexible tubes.
Josh: Is there any indoor unit if it's just air-conditioning?
DROdio: You still have to have an outdoor condenser for it.
Josh: Is that all you need?
DROdio: You still have some machinery inside, but it wouldn't be has big.
Josh: I almost wish they hadn't put in the sunroom on the second floor. And it looks like a perfectly insulated room it's just three windows instead of the two that were originally there, it's like why not just take out the wall or turn the window openings into doorways. It might be load bearing, but you can still like knock out most of the wall and just have an arch. It is weird, because the whole place has the nice hardwoods and then you go to the, step up a little bit and it's like tile floor like is off two of the bedrooms. It's kind of weird. It had a powder room right? Yeah.
DROdio: On the main level?
Josh: Which is nice.
DROdio: Yeah, that is kind of a luxury in D.C. A lot of those homes though!
Josh: You know that weird dead end wall.
DROdio: Yeah, that dead end!
Josh: Put it in the back that's right.
DROdio: That dead end wall though could turn it into a closet space. I was looking the stairs kind of cut up a little bit of it, but it wouldn't be a big deal. Since it's a rehab job they might be motivated to get it sold, because they might have done a type of financing that requires them to, you know, they can't be holding it forever with the construction financing. All I can tell you is you've got to try to know. You know, we'll do all the heavy lifting on it so you don't really have to. What he should really do is just set alerts up to kind of see what comes up on the market, when it's coming on the market that way he just kind of gets a feel for things when they come on. Alright that was Josh. Josh is off and I am done for the day.