The Saga of One Bank Owned Home

avatarthumbnail.jpgLooking through bank owned homes is a lot like being a contestant on Let’s Make a Deal … when you take the key out of the lockbox, you never know what will happen when you walk in the front door.

(If the front door opens, of course. Yesterday’s tour included one home where the bottom lock doesn’t unlock in spite of what the listing agent said. On Thursday we found a house where the front door had been nailed shut.)

It’s a virtual given that some work will be needed on any bank owned home. Think about it … some work is needed on almost every home. Yours. Mine. Your neighbors. Especially your neighbor, the ones with the noisy dog and teenager just learning to drive and to burn rubber as they leave your street.

Some are virtually move-in ready. Some may need new carpet and paint. Some may need appliances, depending on what the previous owners sold ahead of the trustee’s sale.

And some truly are handyman’s specials, such as today’s exhibit from 619 E Jensen Unit 35 in Mesa’s Hohokam Hills subdivision. In real estate parlance, the house has good bones but it’s going to take quite a bit of work before someone could move in. Which is why it’s priced around 15% below current comps for the area at $159,900.

Let’s start with the positives … the house has a side entry with a courtyard shaded by mature trees.

There’s a fireplace in the family room and plantation shutters in what appear to be working condition on the windows in the family room and separate living room.

And there’s a covered patio in the backyard, which you don’t miss until you purchase a home that doesn’t have one.

Also, the community features a fairly nice pool.

Now for the challenges …

As you probably noticed above, there’s no flooring. Carpets were a total loss and were removed so you have bare concrete downstairs and sheet plywood upstairs. The kitchen cabinets are a bit worn and the previous owners removed the stove.

Where the most work is needed is in the garage, where the flat roof had leaked at one time. The leak’s been stopped but the underside of the garage ceiling – the sheetrock – is going to need to be replaced.

To be honest, a house like this one at 619 Jensen Unit 35 isn’t necessarily for every buyer. But for someone who is looking for a house that can bought on the relative cheap and fixed up to add value, this may be a good place to start.

[tags]Phoenix real estate, bank owned homes[/tags]

Jonathan Dalton

Jonathan Dalton is a 40-plus-year resident of the Valley and has been helping folks buy and sell homes since 2004. He can be reached at 602-502-9693 or info at