Buying a Lake Ozarks Fixer Upper – Yea or Nay?

How do you know if it's worth your time and money to invest in a Lake of the Ozarks fixer-upper?You’ve been considering dipping your toes in the Lake of the Ozarks real estate pool. Prices have leveled off and even begun to rise in some places while mortgage loan rates remain exceptionally low (3.35% for 30 year FRM, 2.65% for 15 year FRM and 2.56% for a 1 year ARM as of the writing of this post). You’ve set aside some money, gotten your credit in decent shape and you are trying to get the best deal for your money. Foreclosures, short sales and other homes that are in less than move-in ready condition typically have lower prices. But, when it comes to buying a Lake Ozarks fixer-upper, should you say “yea” or “nay”?

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Many homebuyers only think about how much they are paying for the home, how much of a down payment they need, what their mortgage payment is going to be and what they can expect to pay in taxes and insurance. Unfortunately, the day-to-day maintenance of a Lake of the Ozarks home, especially a fixer-upper, isn’t always factored in. That’s when you find yourself in trouble. Some of the things you need to keep in mind before you buy a Lake of the Ozarks fixer-upper include:

  • What needs to be repaired/replaced/re-done completely? A home inspection performed BEFORE you buy will give you a good insight into what to expect to need as far as major repairs are concerned. Using the inspection results as a guideline, shop around to find out what the real numbers will be to get these issues taken care of. Just estimating your repair/replacement costs can end up costing you thousands of dollars down the road.
  • What kind of a neighborhood is the Lake of the Ozarks home located in? You can spend tons of money making this home the most fabulous place to live, but, if it’s in a lousy neighborhood, you will have a tough time selling it to someone else. However, if you take a less-than-desirable home in a fantastic neighborhood and spend the time, money and care it will take to fix it up, you have found a real diamond in the rough.
  • What are the other homes in the neighborhood valued at? This will help you determine whether the Lake of the Ozarks fixer-upper you’re interested in is going to be worth the investment. If the cost to buy and renovate is more than what other area homes are selling for, you may want to keep looking.

Don’t forget to consult your real estate agent. You hired them for their expertise. They are knowledgeable in real estate trends and can offer sound advice about the Lake of the Ozarks home you are considering. Do your homework. The price may be extremely attractive at first glance, but a little investigation could show that it’s not worth your investment of time and money. Fixer-uppers are often-times messy and time-consuming. So, mostly importantly, be patient if this is the path you decide to go on.

Is buying a Lake Ozarks fixer-upper a “yea” or a “nay” in your book? How you answer the questions above will help you decide. As long as you go into a project with your eyes open, you will be prepared for just about anything. Contact us when you’re ready to start looking for your next Twin Lakes home. Whether it’s move-in ready or needs some tender loving care, we can help you find just what you’re looking for.

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Crist & Sharon Fanning, Your Link to the Lake Lifestyle

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