Today on the Buzz, Dave Burnett and Thom Dallman are giving you helpful tips and reminders about prepping your home for winter. Later on they are going over our current featured listings and then touching a bit on where you should and should not put your money in home upgrades. Enjoy the show!
Dave Burnett: This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz. I'm Dave Burnett. He is Thom Dallman, the co-owner, designated broker of Core Group Realty, coregrouprealty.com the website, call 208-933-7777, and easy to find if you want to stop by right here on Emerald Street.
Thom Dallman: Yeah. We're at 8665 West Emerald, just right in between Milwaukee and Maple Grove.
Dave Burnett: Yep.
Thom Dallman: On the south side of the road. Can't miss us. Got a great space here. Got all kinds of stuff and people that you can meet and ask questions, talk real estate, whatever you want.
Dave Burnett: And you're always welcome to stop on by.
Thom Dallman: Have a cup of coffee.
Dave Burnett: You know, one of the things we do like to do here and that is talk, more than just numbers and houses and locations, but we like to talk about things that will help improve your home.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, yeah.
Dave Burnett: 'Cause not everybody's selling a house. Not everybody's buying a house.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: But everybody lives somewhere.
Thom Dallman: Everybody lives somewhere and they all need some reminders, if you will, some reminders, especially going into different season changes and stuff.
Dave Burnett: Oh my.
Thom Dallman: Gettin' your house ready for -
Dave Burnett: Here it comes.
Thom Dallman: Oh, yeah.
Dave Burnett: Here comes fall.
Thom Dallman: Here comes fall, which is gonna lead right into winter.
Dave Burnett: Yep. So, cooler temperatures -
Thom Dallman: If that Farmer's Almanac is accurate, we're gonna have another crazy winter.
Dave Burnett: Nope. I'm not hearing it. I'm not hearing it from ya. I don't want to hear that at all. Oh, my goodness.
Thom Dallman: Oh no. But, anyways, I had some thoughts on some things to do to kinda get your house ready for the fall.
Dave Burnett: You know, and I joke about "I don't want to hear about it", but now is the time to get ahead of it, if it happens.
Thom Dallman: Yeah.
Dave Burnett: If we do have another hard winter, now's the time to get ahead of that.
Thom Dallman: Exactly, yeah. So, last year's winter was so bad and there were so many issues with the gutter dams and bridge dams and that had caused so much damage to roofs and stuff, so now is a really great time to kinda get up there, check out your gutters, check out all the flashings, check out your roof, make sure that it's sound.
Dave Burnett: Your downspouts.
Thom Dallman: Downspouts, yeah. Yeah.
Dave Burnett: Because I found out I had a downspout that was all plugged up.
Thom Dallman: Oh, did you?
Dave Burnett: Oh, I found out. It all began melting, it all began pouring over the gutter.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, exactly. It backs up. So, yeah, clean those downspouts and make sure that they're clear of all the debris, as well as the rest of your gutters. Make sure that there's no leaves. I actually have noticed driving into work the last couple days that there's leaves on the ground, starting to show up on the ground, so definitely make sure you're checking out for debris in the gutters and making sure that just the water drainage in general is just accurate on your roof and stuff like that.
Make sure that, if you have any trees that are growing close to the house, make sure that they're trimmed back so that they're not scraping on the roof during the cold and so forth. So, making sure that those kind of things are ... away from the house.
Dave Burnett: Yep. You know, maybe sometime we should have a horticulturalist in studio. There's a way to prune and trim your trees up where you actually make the trim as opposed to just whacking on it like most of us do.
Thom Dallman: I'm one of those. Guilty.
Dave Burnett: There's a way to do it and, maybe, sometimes we have somebody in to talk about that because there's a place where you do it so that you do it and not damage the tree, 'cause you really need it off and away from the house. The other thing you might want to do, right now as opposed to waiting until there's a foot of snow, and I didn't really even know these existed before, but I know a lot of people were looking for roof rakes.
Thom Dallman: Oh, yeah.
Dave Burnett: And that's a rake to get up and you can scrape that snow off the edge.
Thom Dallman: Scrape that snow off, yeah.
Dave Burnett: You know, three or four feet off the edge of your house. You might want to buy it now while they're in stock as opposed to when they're out of stock and you have a foot of snow.
Thom Dallman: When everybody makes a mad rush for 'em.
Dave Burnett: Yeah. So that's a little preparation.
Thom Dallman: That's actually a very good idea.
Dave Burnett: Is to get that stuff now, ahead of time.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, yeah. And, while you're up on that roof checking things out, make sure that you're checking out your chimney and fireplace. You know, hire a professional to come in and clean out your chimney and stuff so that you don't, as you kind of start burning wood, do this through the winter and stuff like that, you don't obviously want anything trapped in there and smoke coming into the house and so forth. So, it's a great time to get your chimney cleaned out. Check the fireplace, check the siding on the outside of your house. Look for any cracks. They always say that you should ... check your windows for drafts, going into the wintertime. So now's a really great time to kind of start checkin' those things out. Looking for any areas in your windows that might need caulking and stuff to prevent those drafts coming though the home and upping your heating bill.
Dave Burnett: And a way to do that, by the way, effectively (kids this is not for you), but if you blow on a match, go into the room, close the door, make sure the air conditioning's not on so the room's still, take a match, blow the match out holding in front of the window and, if the smoke just kinda rises a little bit, you're good but, if you see that smoke blowing, then you know you have a draft.
Thom Dallman: You have a draft, yeah.
Dave Burnett: Be careful with fire.
Thom Dallman: They also, yeah, they do actually say that you could do that with a candle as well.
Dave Burnett: Yeah.
Thom Dallman: Just hold the light, a lit candle.
Dave Burnett: If it flickered or not.
Thom Dallman: [crosstalk 00:05:21] and it'll flicker if it's leaking, so make sure your seals are good on your windows just to save on your heating bills and stuff like that. So, it's also a great time, obviously, we talk about every season, getting the furnace cleaned out, changing out your filter, winterizing your air conditioner, making sure that it's covered for the wintertime and stuff like that. So, that's removing the window units, just prepping your air conditioning and furnace for the wintertime.
Dave Burnett: Yep.
Thom Dallman: For high use and stuff, so -
Dave Burnett: So vacuuming out the inside of your furnace. Easy to do, just make sure it's not on, and just get in there with that little brush attachment. Vacuum and clean it out and get the filters changed.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: And that's one thing I always seem to forget to do, and that's getting my air conditioner, the big unit outside, covered.
Thom Dallman: Oh yeah.
Dave Burnett: It's like, "Oh, it's snowing. I shoulda went out there and - "
Thom Dallman: Shoulda covered that unit.
Dave Burnett: I really neglect the sides of my house. I probably should get out there a little more often.
Thom Dallman: I feel like I neglect all my exterior stuff too. I have a grill that has not been covered in five years, so it's just ...
Dave Burnett: You're supposed to cover those?
Thom Dallman: Yeah, right?
Dave Burnett: Time for a new grill.
Thom Dallman: Yep, time for a new grill. So, definitely a good idea to think about that stuff. So, the faucets on the outside of your house, make sure that you're gettin' covers for them. Always a good idea to do that or you can do the old-fashioned get some old t-shirts and wrap 'em around 'em if you want.
Dave Burnett: That's always attractive.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, right? But, no, they make these really inexpensive Styrofoam covers for your faucets, for your spigots and stuff on the exterior of the house to make sure that they don't get frozen. It's easy to ... to freeze those and then pipes bust and, come spring, you have water comin' out your side of your house.
Dave Burnett: That's never good.
Thom Dallman: That's never good.
Dave Burnett: Speaking of faucets, it's probably a time to think about getting somebody to blow out the sprinkler system.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, yeah.
Dave Burnett: Don't wait til December.
Thom Dallman: It's gettin' that time of year too, to kinda start minimizing your watering of your lawns and stuff like that, and start gettin' onto those landscaper’s books. [crosstalk 00:07:34]
Dave Burnett: They do get busy.
Thom Dallman: Yeah.
Dave Burnett: By November 1st they'll be very, very busy 'cause -
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: Like last year, it could be too late.
Thom Dallman: Exactly. So, yeah, it's not a bad time, if you're shutting off the sprinklers, it's not a bad time for them to just walk through and make sure all the sprinklers are working right and stuff. Most of those you'd notice if they weren't, but damage happens all the time, so you never know when to do that. So, it's time to put away the seasonal furniture, take your cushions off. This is a great time to kinda get out there and kind of get all that stuff inside the house ... Organizing your shed. Now's the time to kinda get your shed kind of put together and ready for the wintertime and stuff. Including, you know, just your lawnmowers [crosstalk 00:08:23]
Dave Burnett: Thom, you're kinda bumming me out right now.
Thom Dallman: Aw, sorry.
Dave Burnett: It's putting away the patio, the cushions, that just ... aw, man, that's a sign that winter is coming.
Thom Dallman: Is it too soon, maybe? Should we have waited for a couple of weeks for this segment?
Dave Burnett: At least be ready to do it, how about that?
Thom Dallman: Exactly, exactly.
Dave Burnett: So that, when it snows, then I'll run out and get 'em.
Thom Dallman: Yeah. Yeah, just remember to get your power tools or the tools that you use on your lawn or your lawnmowers, your leaf blowers, stuff like that, ready for winter. They always recommend kinda having some gas online if you have a generator, make sure, or gas stored in case you use generators, in case there's any power outages or anything like that. So making sure, of course, that those are up and out of the way from kids in your garage, prepping your garage and everything since wintertime, you know, people spend a lot of time in their house and in their garage so ...
Dave Burnett: And there's always that question, "Are my vents on my foundation open or closed"?
Thom Dallman: Oh yes.
Dave Burnett: Close 'em in the winter, open 'em in the spring.
Thom Dallman: Exactly, yeah.
Dave Burnett: That way it keeps the cold air from going under the house.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, make sure your vents are ... all cleaned out or keep all the bugs that are wanting to migrate into your house as well during the fall as it gets colder out and stuff. Not only that but your vents inside the house, your heating vents and stuff like that, you know, popping a vacuum down there just to clean out the vents a little bit and minimize the build-up down there. Actually, had a really good tip of ... someone had said that they cut out every fall, they cut out filters and put them in their vents, so it's kind of a double venting, filtering system for the air and stuff. So, it's like, "Oh, that's a good idea". It prevents things from falling down into your vents and getting into your ducting and stuff. It's like, "That's a really good idea". I might have to try that this year.
Dave Burnett: Just make sure it's a very thin filter.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: So, otherwise, I had somebody, an HVAC guy, explain when they're reading the air conditioning in the rooms, how they can tell whether the rooms were all getting adequate air or not, so it might be time for that old nylon, do women wear nylons anymore? I don't know if they do or not.
Thom Dallman: I don't know if they do.
Dave Burnett: Might be a good use for one.
Thom Dallman: Exactly. I just know that it was a good idea because where I only have one space in my living room for a Christmas tree and, of course, it's right next to a vent so, inevitably, every year I get so many pine needles down there.
Dave Burnett: That's not good.
Thom Dallman: And that vent that I have to vacuum out.
Dave Burnett: That'd be a good way to do it. And, lastly, let me mention this now. We are approaching October. Now's the time to go ahead and put on that winter fertilizer.
Thom Dallman: Yes, yes.
Dave Burnett: So, get that done so next spring, it'll all come up nice and green and lush.
Thom Dallman: Exactly. I think that it's also the time to plant certain -
Dave Burnett: Bulbs.
Thom Dallman: Bulbs and stuff like that to get ready for next year as well, so ...
Dave Burnett: Yep. Every year I think, "Oh, I gotta do that", and then it's winter and it's too late.
Thom Dallman: Oh yeah. Yeah, now's the time to bring in your potted plants and start thinking about where you're gonna put them and store them.
Dave Burnett: Boy, you could do a big blog for website on this.
Thom Dallman: Yeah. I plan on it.
Dave Burnett: There you go. Alright, this is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz. We love doing and talking about this for ya. Gonna be talking about something else coming up here, and that would be Fall Parade of Homes.
Thom Dallman: Yep.
Dave Burnett: We'll talk about that here in just a minute right here on the Idaho Real Estate Buzz, being brought to you by Diversified Mortgage and by Core Group Realty. Call today, 208-933-7777, or go to coregrouprealty.com. Find out why they say, "You get more with Core".
Dave Burnett: This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz. I'm Dave Burnet. He is Thom Dallman, the co-owner, designated broker of Core Group Realty. Coregrouprealty.com, that's the website to go to if you have any questions about Core Group and some of the sponsors they have, some of the vendors they have, some of the homes that are listed. You'll find it all there, or call 208-933-7777. We have a guest in the studio today.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, Darius from One Call Restorations here to chat a little bit about mold. Welcome, Darius.
Darius Elison: Good to be here.
Dave Burnett: When it comes to mold, that's a word that at one time was frightening. At one time it basically meant burn the house down and you can't sell it.
Thom Dallman: Right.
Dave Burnett: We've found out over time that it's not a death penalty for the house.
Darius Elison: It is not. In fact, it's not nearly as dangerous as most people think, and it's not as scary as most people think. The most common places to find mold is the attic and crawlspace, which aren't living spaces anyway, so it's not.
Dave Burnett: But it's not something, if you find out you have mold, it's not something you can take care of with a spray bottle. It does take treatment to get it to a position to where a house could be sold.
Darius Elison: Yeah, absolutely. The most common myth about mold is it can be cleaned with bleach, or it can be covered with paint or Kilz, and neither one of those methods are approved or recommended.
Dave Burnett: Mold has been in the news a lot with the hurricanes and the flooding they had in Texas. In fact, that's one of the biggest things that homeowners are finding there. They had all that water, it sat, it kept things soaked, and you put a little warm temperature on it, and guess what grows?
Darius Elison: It'll be mold city.
Dave Burnett: For us here in Idaho, we live in a dry climate.
Darius Elison: Super-dry.
Dave Burnett: But mold is still something that happens. How does that work?
Darius Elison: Most commonly, especially with the crawlspace and attics and is just a lack of ventilation. We have a really dry climate, so we have less mold than most other parts of the country, but ventilation is key. With the attic ventilation got to make sure that you have the proper amount of ventilation per square foot of attic, and then also make sure you don't have anything that could be causing condensation. Ventilation pipes going all the way through the roof and being sealed properly are a huge part of it, bath fans.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, unfortunately we've run into that where we've seen the bath fans or even laundry dryer vents going right into the attic space with [crosstalk 00:02:25]-
Darius Elison: Dryer vents a lot.
Thom Dallman: ... all the way out through or what not.
Dave Burnett: Yeah, that's not a good thing to vent your dryer into the attic, then.
Darius Elison: No, it's not.
Dave Burnett: I guess another thing to check, and you mentioned the seals. I had on my home several years ago, we had it re-roofed, and found out that on the vents, the little rubber gaskets around the pipes had just gotten old and shrunk down and water was able to get down in there.
Darius Elison: Yeah, those roof jacks, over time they're going to crack and once water gets down in there it's usually localized mold around those areas just on the bottom side of the sheeting. It can definitely be a problem. You should be having your roof looked at regularly. Every twice a year we recommend getting into the attic and crawlspace to see if there's anything getting on that you can get on top of early and save a lot of money.
Dave Burnett: Twice a year, then?
Darius Elison: Yeah.
Dave Burnett: Just to take a look. What do you look for when you go up there?
Darius Elison: Just look for anything out of the norm. If there's something that's discolored in areas. Most people know what mold look like. It's going to be dark and fuzzy, and you see that kind of stuff, then it's a good time to call somebody. A lot of times even with brand new homes what we're finding is a brand new home gets built, the lumber materials sit on the ground on the site, and they'll get rained on and stuff. Then the same lumber or trusses will get throw into the building construction, and so on a brand new home sale you get a home inspection that's done, and it'll come back with just spotty mold on the trusses on these brand new materials. We come in there and take care of it very easily and very inexpensively.
Dave Burnett: When it comes to the crawlspace of your home how often should that be looked at? It's dark down there and there's spiders and snakes. I don't really want to go down there.
Darius Elison: Nobody wants to go in the crawlspace.
Dave Burnett: Can you tell by sell?
Darius Elison: You can definitely tell by smell. If it smells funny that's a good thing. We do free crawlspace inspections because it's not just mold you can find down there. It's always good on a crawlspace or attic, both, if you don't feel comfortable going in there yourself just call a professional to come out and do a free assessment for you.
Thom Dallman: For sure.
Dave Burnett: So I open up the-
Thom Dallman: There's people that can do that for you.
Dave Burnett: That's a good thing because there's creepy-crawlies down there. You pull up the hatch on your house to go in your crawlspace. What should I smell when I open that up? What's a healthy home smell like?
Darius Elison: It shouldn't smell like anything. It should just smell like-
Dave Burnett: Dirt?
Darius Elison: ... dirt, yeah, the air outside. The best time I think to check the crawlspace is in the spring. That's when the water tables are the highest. That way if there is a water issue in there we can address it because if that water sits in there and that humidity gets above 60% you can get some mold growth. If we can address the water before the mold growth by just putting a drain system in there that'd be ideal. Don't know how this winter is going to be, but last winter with the heavy amount of moisture content we ended up doing a lot more crawlspace drainage systems this year than we have in the past. One of the biggest things on those drainage systems is making sure they're done properly. There's a lot of guys in the valley. I've seen some drainage systems that were subpar, that will only work in theory. The biggest thing on those if you got somebody coming in and they're installing a drainage system, and they're using a five-gallon Home Depot or Lowe's buck as their pump tank, it's probably not the most professional system.
Dave Burnett: You want something a little better than just a plastic bucket working there.
Darius Elison: Unfortunately, in the valley that is the standard right now, though.
Dave Burnett: Is that right?
Thom Dallman: Oh, really?
Darius Elison: I think the two companies that do the majority of these, that's what they're using, unfortunately.
Dave Burnett: What size of a fill space should it be?
Darius Elison: The bucket should be at least 18" deep and then the width of the bucket is determined by the pump size. With the five-gallon bucket, so some pumps the arm, the float arm that activates the pump, actually rubs up against the bucket. And then by having-
Dave Burnett: Something bigger than that needs to be [crosstalk 00:06:27].
Darius Elison: Absolutely, and then by having perforations in the bucket you're attracting dirt and silt that can come in there and plug up that sump pump.
Dave Burnett: Is a lot of the water that comes in, is it from your outside water, from gutters and the house not being properly, you know?
Darius Elison: I would say about half the time it is coming from the gutters or improper drainage. What we see is gutters just come down right down the side of the house, and then they go into a flower bed. We put up a nice beautiful curb between the grass and the flowerbed, and that retains all the water.
Thom Dallman: [inaudible 00:06:57].
Darius Elison: Need to have negative slope away from the house for at least the first five feet.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Darius Elison: That's the code.
Thom Dallman: A lot of these houses, especially newer construction, we've talked about that before how the ground kind of settles around the house naturally after being built and stuff like that, so it's definitely something that you should be watching for in your home.
Dave Burnett: Other things we should watch out for or things we should be looking for when it comes to our homes?
Darius Elison: Well, as it results to mold the biggest thing that we've been seeing is just a lot of scare tactics and red flags. If somebody approaches mold as being toxic mold or black mold, those aren't scientific terms. Black is a color.
Dave Burnett: You hear that term though. You hear black mold.
Thom Dallman: You hear it all the time.
Darius Elison: Yeah, black is a color. Most mold is black. That does not mean it's more dangerous than any other mold out there. I get more scared when I see rainbow colored mold because I say, "What is that?" I see black mold all the time. One of the big things that we see is companies that do their own testing. That's a huge red flag. If a company is coming in there and they're doing their own testing, that means that they can alter the samples to make it look like the mold is more prevalent than it is. Then after the remediation, more importantly, is they have the ability to test and have it cleared, even though it might not be. In our industry, the company that does the remediation does not do the testing. If your company is saying they do the testing, that is a huge red flag, and there are a lot of companies that do that. There should be an air quality test done by, usually, MTI. There's a lot of other companies that do it as well, but they need to come in and do an actual air testing. What happens is a lot of other companies are taking swab samples to show that the mold is gone, and they're charging those. All they are just the off-the-shelf Lowe's or Home Depot, sometimes they get a little more sophisticated and get it online. But they're taking these $20.00 tests that just simply tell you whether you have mold or not, and they're charging $200 for the sample, and they're worthless.
Dave Burnett: That's a pretty good markup.
Darius Elison: It's a great markup, but, yeah, that's a big, red flag. Then the other thing is anytime some comes out there to take a look at mold and they can tell you what type it is by looking at it, that's another big, red flag. There's no features of mold that are going to tell you exactly what type it is.
Thom Dallman: Interesting. Never thought about that before.
Dave Burnett: All right, so let's say I've had my home tested. We have mold in it. In 60 seconds or so what do you do when you come in to fix that?
Darius Elison: The first we do is we get rid of the mold source, or the moisture source that's causing the mold. That's the number one thing that we should be looking at, is making sure whatever the source of the moisture is gone because without a moisture source there will be no mold, no more will grow back or anything like that. We want to get rid of the moisture source. We want to definitely encapsulate that mold in some sort of a containment. If it's more than 10 square feet we set up a proper containment where we actually have negative pressure inside that containment and we filter it a HEPA. Another thing that we see from companies that don't have proper certification and training is when they set up these containment's you're creating negative pressure inside the containment, so you have to have some sort of makeup air somewhere. That makeup air should be filtered with a directional filter so there's no chance of it getting back in the home. A lot of times we go in and we see notches cut in the plastic, and the plastic just simply taped to the walls. That not how it should look. It should be pressure-fit containment with two by fours. It should look clean. You just know what to look for. If all they got is plastic hanging off the wall and some duct tape holding it there, and then a couple of slits in the plastic and a fan inside pulling air out that's bad things. Most people know what looks right and what doesn't look right. If it looks unprofessional it probably is.
Thom Dallman: Interesting.
Dave Burnett: All right, so the bottom line I'm taking out of this, though, is that if you do have mold in your home it's not a death sentence for the house.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Darius Elison: It's not. The most important thing is just remember to call professionals. A lot of people will try and do it themselves with bleach or with Kilz. The problem is if you're trying to clean the mold most people will protect themselves and they wear a respirator, but they don't think about the fact that most of the mold contamination actually get in though your eyes because they're moist and it attracts to it. Wearing a respirator doesn't protect your eyes at all. That's why when our guys come in they have full suits, full face respirators.
Thom Dallman: [crosstalk 00:11:48].
Dave Burnett: Very good. All right, trying to help you take care of your home. It's an important thing to do, and especially if you're selling it that's the kind of thing that's going to get caught in that inspection as well.
Thom Dallman: Exactly. Make sure that you're, as Darius Elison said, reaching out to the professionals to help you make your home safe and sound for your family and all that.
Dave Burnett: A contact can be found on the website?
Thom Dallman: Yeah, go to coregrouprealty.com, and go to the service provider page. You'll see our list of providers, including One Call Restoration.
Dave Burnett: Excellent. All right, we'll continue on the other side. This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz being brought to you by Diversified Mortgage and by Core Group Realty. Call today 208-933-7777. Find out why they say you get more with Core.
Dave Burnett: This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz. I'm Dave Burnett. He is Thom Dallman, who is the Co-Owner and designated broker of Core Group Realty. Coregrouprealty.com, the website for you to go to. 933-7777. I want you to get that phone number in your mind. Just think 933, and then just keep dialing seven until it rings. That's the number you can call at any time to reach the customer care department at Core Group Realty, and of course to get hold of one of the agents if there's something we talk about in here that you go hmm I'd like to look into that. Give that number a call.
Thom Dallman: Oh yeah, please. We have people standing by 24/7 usually ready to go and answer questions. Might be kind of hard to get someone in the middle of the night, but you never know.
Dave Burnett: Yeah, you can still ... If you're up in the middle of the night, then wait until morning and somebody will help take care of that for you. I think one of the things, it's kind of interesting that real estate has changed I think, at least from the pedestrian view in my view, and that is the home flipping shows, Flip or Flop, and the This or That, or the Property Brothers.
Thom Dallman: Always talk about that.
Dave Burnett: It kind of makes you look at real estate, I mean when you buy a home it's a personal thing, and it's sometimes very difficult to sell your home because it's emotional.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: Your kids took their first steps there, you had prom's or graduations, or you first got married and moved in there. It is an emotional decision to sell-
Thom Dallman: Oh, for sure.
Dave Burnett: -and sometimes difficult to do. That's why-
Thom Dallman: We've got one of those properties over there in Payette, where it's basically the family was raised in it. We've got this lovely lady who has brought up her kids, and her family, and everything in this house on this nice little four-and-a-half-acre farm pretty much right there in the middle of Payette. So, there's a lot of emotional attachment to the house as far as that moving on with the next phase of her life and so forth.
Dave Burnett: But that's where, I mean to me, and I think you'd back me up on this, that is where a really good real estate who gets that, who understands that, but can help look past that because it's a business transaction.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: Even though you've got all these memories, a good real estate agent understands that, but they also know that no, it has to be put forward as a property to see as a business.
Thom Dallman: Yes, you still have to deal with the current market values and so forth, and be very conscious of the emotional attachment that your sellers have and also the realistic reality of what the market can support for that particular value on the house.
Dave Burnett: But I think that same thing exists now for when you look at these fix them shows, there's no emotional attachment by these people as they flip these homes.
Thom Dallman: Oh no.
Dave Burnett: It is a business deal.
Thom Dallman: It is a definite business deal, and they're in it to make a profit. Sometimes it's a small profit, it's not very much, sometimes it's a big profit depending on the property and the extent of what they have to go in and do to fix up the property.
Dave Burnett: But I've run into a number of people now that they're not fixing to flip it, but they're challenged to buy fixer uppers and to go, you know what let's buy this house, we can get it for a bargain, and then the money that we save we'll put into fixing it up.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: What are some of the pitfalls that you have-
Thom Dallman: And then move in while they're fixing it up.
Dave Burnett: Oh yeah.
Thom Dallman: I've seen that happen quite a few times.
Dave Burnett: That happens a lot. Let's fix up a bedroom and a bathroom good enough to live in, and we'll fix it while we're in it. What are some of the pitfalls or benefits of fixer uppers?
Thom Dallman: Sure. Obviously, the disruption to your life if you move into the house is a huge pitfall of buying a fixer upper and moving into it. I see that quite often. People are like you know what I'm going to buy a fixer upper, I'm going to move into, I'm going to live in it for two years to save on the capital gains on it, and then either sell it or rent it out after the two years. The pitfall is that you have to live in a house that is torn up. You might have to go down to the gas station at some point to use the restroom because your restroom is torn up as you're replacing toilets and stuff.
Dave Burnett: Well you don't think about the fact like if you're redoing a kitchen, you don't really think about the fact that you might be without a sink, or you might be without a stove.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: Or you might be cooking on a stove just plugged into the middle of a room with bare subflooring, and dealing with a dish pan full of water. I mean ...
Thom Dallman: I had a friend who lived around a McDonald's. By the time he got done with his kitchen, he was so sick and tired of going to McDonald's for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Dave Burnett: Yeah, I mean you don't even think about the fact that if you have an over the range microwave, guess what you don't have a microwave. You may have to go buy a $99 microwave to sit on a box in the corner.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: You have to weigh those things.
Thom Dallman: Some of the inconveniences like that, but then on the opposite side there's that concept of sweat equity that you can get out of a project like this. That's that equity that you get from doing some of that work yourself and not hiring contractors, and living in the property and doing it on your own time. That can definitely be profitable as you work on that stuff, and get in there and tile, and ...
Dave Burnett: I guess I'm going to say something that's kind of obvious, but I'll let you verify that. It takes a certain mentality, a certain personality, to be able to do that doesn't it?
Thom Dallman: Oh yes, it really does. It's hard.
Dave Burnett: So, for an individual it's hard, for a married couple any words of advice?
Thom Dallman: Avoid it if you can. Yeah no, I've seen married couples going into these fix its and they have to have a really good relationship because there's some interesting phenomenon about married couples that they don't like to hear criticism from their spouse.
Dave Burnett: No, we never do.
Thom Dallman: If someone's doing something wrong and the other one mentions it, it can usually result in a pretty good fight.
Dave Burnett: I think what I have been told, and what I have experienced because we remodeled a kitchen once, it took about a month to do, is that some of those little things that are irritating are just magnified.
Thom Dallman: Oh yes.
Dave Burnett: Suddenly that dirty cereal bowl that's normally left in the sink, which is irritating, is magnified into that that is a national crisis.
Thom Dallman: Of for sure.
Dave Burnett: Which is easy to laugh at, but you're going through it-
Thom Dallman: It happens.
Dave Burnett: -and it happens.
Thom Dallman: Oh for sure, for sure. One of the biggest fights that I've seen happen is basically over whether to spend the extra money for that nicer tile, or to spend the extra money for that nicer stove. Sometimes there's not a return on your investment when it's buy the most expensive stove you can find, but one or the other in the relationship says no I want to go all the way and get the nicest things in here, and then it will be more attractive when we do get it on the market.
Dave Burnett: Now one of the things we talked about earlier in the show I would think is probably pretty important. That is comparable in the community, in your neighborhood.
Thom Dallman: Yes exactly.
Dave Burnett: Because you kind of do want to make sure you're making the house comparable to other homes.
Thom Dallman: Yeah, you don't want to over style your house beyond what your neighbors or your neighborhood is doing. You can over amend your house and put in such nice fixtures that it actually kind of doesn't, you don't get your return investment because you just can't price it high enough to actually get a return on those items. You have to be super aware of what other homes are selling for, what they have in their homes as far as countertops, as far as appliances, as far as all of that stuff. Make sure that you are looking at those comparable. Get out and look at some of those active homes and sold homes that are pending at least to see what they've got going on inside of them in the neighborhood.
Dave Burnett: Well let me put you on the spot here. We talk about a lot of different homes. We talk about Coregrouprealty.com, the website. Do you have any listings that you would consider fixer uppers to be out there that you could help people to jump into?
Thom Dallman: Yeah, actually we've got a great property over at 9724 Horseshoe Bend Road.
Dave Burnett: Oh, we've talked about that before.
Thom Dallman: We've talked about this one in the past, yeah. That one is a 3,400-square foot home listed at $250,000. It's one of those properties that's cash and conventional only loans because it does have work done, so it won't pass an FHA or a VA appraisal. But great potential. I mean 3,400 square feet.
Dave Burnett: It's big.
Thom Dallman: It's big. It's on .7 of an acre, so if a developer was thinking about getting in and doing one of those in fills, where you can subdivide it, put it into .2-acre parcels and do three little houses there. Or getting a 203K loan, which is a rehab loan to go in and fix up the house is always an option as well.
Dave Burnett: Which would bring it up to standards for a traditional loan?
Thom Dallman: Yup, for a traditional loan. There's some great options on this house over there on Horseshoe Bend Road.
Dave Burnett: Do you see that very often where people take a house that has enough land on it to divide up? Does that happen very often?
Thom Dallman: Oh yeah. You can see it happen quite often right now, especially in around the BSU area and up on the bench.
Dave Burnett: Really?
Thom Dallman: That's where those row homes are going in. People are buying the bigger lots, or houses on bigger lots, and then subdividing them into the smaller ones. So, you see three of those row homes going in. So it's happening quite frequently.
Dave Burnett: If you did that, if you bought a house and then split it off, you can probably make at least enough money to help subsidize the cost of the home that you're in can't you?
Thom Dallman: Oh yeah. Oh for sure. There's some great-
Dave Burnett: Get a big enough one you could pay for the thing.
Thom Dallman: There's some great profit, but it does take money, the cash to be able to do that, or the ability to be able to get a construction loan and so forth. You really want to do your due diligence when doing that and make sure that the zoning permits it, and that you can get it passed while you're going through your inspection time phrases for those, but [crosstalk 00:10:11].
Dave Burnett: Again, that is where Core Group Realty can help you. If you've thought about that, or thought I wonder if that's possible, or maybe this is the first time you've heard us talking about it today and you went wait a minute, that's a good idea, if you want to talk to one of the agents here-
Thom Dallman: Please do.
Dave Burnett: -they can help guide you through it and help you find a property, and let you know what the pitfalls and everything that goes with it is.
Thom Dallman: Exactly.
Dave Burnett: You can do that by calling 933-7777. If you want to ask for Thom, go straight to the top, you can ask for Thom he's more than happy to answer your calls, or he'll also, there's a lot of different agents here that are specialists in areas. Whether it's bare land, or whether it's condos, or property out in rural areas, you have a lot of people that really kind of specialize in areas.
Thom Dallman: Exactly. Yes, we do.
Dave Burnett: You can find them at CoreGroupRealty.com. We'll do this again next Saturday. We do it every Saturday at 2:00, and next week no exception. It's called the Idaho Real Estate Buzz. I'm Dave Burnett, he is Thom Dallman with Core Group Realty on 580 KIDO.
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