Rant on House "Flipping"

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Most people do not have the time or skills to put work into making a house liveable after purchase, nor do they necessarily have the money to spare.

And stop and think about why, because it's understandable. For a daily driver for work, you wouldn't be likely to buy a car that needed a new engine or transmission or other major work to get it running. You need the car now and don't want to spend crazy money to fix it so you can use it. By the same reasoning, people want to move into and enjoy a house without having to spend big bucks for repairs and appliances. There's a difference for potentially collectible cars that are basket cases or classic houses that need renovation, but buyers for those are the exception.

Also, if a house needs work, trying to sell it could run into inspection, potential housing code enforcement, and occupancy permit problems.

The need to be able to use something that was a big purchase is also why flippers succeed.
But in my situation there was no work needed, just pick the color and style you like. I allowed 5k for the carpet and appliances which is what I ended up spending. Just go to the Home Store and say give me that refrigerator, that stove and this carpet. 2 weeks later it was installed by them. All the selection could be done while waiting for settlement and installed the day of or the next day. Instead they get my choices of model and color. I was offering a cash rebate at settlement to pay for these so they could have gone cheap and pocketed the difference or added a bit and upgraded. They had 2 inspections, 1 from the VA and 1 independent. I had to install a handrail on the basement stairs and put a block on the downstairs sliding door because it was a 10" step down to the ground and replace a tube spout because the shower diverter was not auto releasing when you turned the water off.
What I realized is that people are not looking for problems when they are house shopping. They are more focused on the small things that are easy to fix and ignore the elephant in the room. They will walk because they dont like the paint colors while ignoring the dehumidifier in the basement corner if the bath fixtures look nice.
 
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Don't put blame on someone who purchased a house, fixed it up, made it look presentable and made a profit for their effort. It is the responsibility of the buyer to do their due dilligence on the home they may want to buy. Its past history is easy to find out through the recorder's office.There are people who do inspections who's job is to point out any problem areas. It is a 68 year old home not a three year old one.

That is true, but what if the flipper previous owner takes shortcuts or doesn't know what the heck they are doing, and things aren't visible to a home inspector or potential buyer? One of the outlets that burned up on me because it was improperly installed was behind the dishwasher. Was the home inspector (or I) supposed to go pull the outlets out to find out if they had been installed properly? Including the one behind the dishwasher?

And on that note, how would I prove that he was the one who installed those outlets improperly? When I sold my first house, the rookie buyer who bought it assumed that the property disclosure was his iron-clad guarantee there's nothing wrong, never was anything wrong, and never will have anything wrong (yeah, pay no attention to that disclaimer in bold print). Turns out a previous owner before me did some foundation repairs improperly and it was not in my disclosure, and neither my home inspection nor his inspection turned them up. Although I didn't experience problems, this guy did, and discovered the faulty repairs. Guess who got blamed and ended up settling with him after learning that although he had a really weak case, it was going to be more expensive and time consuming to fight it?
 

bunnspecial

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Don't put blame on someone who purchased a house, fixed it up, made it look presentable and made a profit for their effort. It is the responsibility of the buyer to do their due dilligence on the home they may want to buy. Its past history is easy to find out through the recorder's office.There are people who do inspections who's job is to point out any problem areas. It is a 68 year old home not a three year old one.

I'm guessing you didn't actually read my OP in detail.

The issue is NOT the 68 year old house. The 68 year old house is exceptional, and what's original to it is wonderful. It's a solid house and well worth quality maintenance.

There were two inspections done on it-one by the seller and one that my wife's bank hired. I've seen both inspection reports. They gave the structure, wiring, plumbing, and the like a thumbs up. The one the bank hired did point out the age of the AC, which has since died and been replaced, but my wife accounted for that and had the money saved/budgeted for if it did go out.

The issue was using crummy materials, and I don't excuse that for making a "quick buck" especially when it ruined some of the original quality construction that's still there.
 
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My home was flipped by a non-profit.. still no better.. Hilljack and son did the work (what I call them).

At least the wiring works after they fixed the half that kept popping the new CAFCI breakers.. and fixed most of the other issues.
they went out of business and didnt fix the popped up roof nails, falling apart deck stair railings and some other minor issues.

its a 1951 Cape Cod that I bought in 2013.. the floors are creakkky and they removed all the carpet but didnt refinish the wood floors. All that said its a decent starter house.. despite having no dining room :LOL:
 
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1) Flippers aren't the only one doing low quality repair and refurb work, builder of new houses and "my dad" sort of DIYers do that all the time too. Especially the "my dad" kind of DIYers, my dad was a machinist and everything is "below him" and he would just screw kitchen cabinets together with sheet metal screw or put metal bracket with mismatch screw together in visible places, he thinks nobody would notice and anyone spend more than he did is being ripped off.

2) Unless you look at the house and buy it, it is what it is. To be fair it was a few years ago and things do wear out, you can ignore some of them but you cannot expect everyone build with the best quality. Just, replace them or get used to them, that's like nothing is perfect in life and you just have to live with it or fix it when you can and if you can afford to.

I don't think inspection care if you are buying a fancy or cheaply veneered house, they look at whether something is safe and whether the bank will lose money if the house get foreclosed, that's about it.
 
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I don't think inspection care if you are buying a fancy or cheaply veneered house, they look at whether something is safe and whether the bank will lose money if the house get foreclosed, that's about it.
Don't get confused between a home inspection an an appraisal. The home inspection just looks for visible flaws, they can't inspect what they can't see. The appraisal just wants to make sure the house is there and worth what the bank is lending on, they don't care that much about condition and don't really do a home inspection.
 
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Don't get confused between a home inspection an an appraisal. The home inspection just looks for visible flaws, they can't inspect what they can't see. The appraisal just wants to make sure the house is there and worth what the bank is lending on, they don't care that much about condition and don't really do a home inspection.
Agree, neither care if your workmanship is good or not.
 
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Cheap cheap cheap materials is what most house flippers use to maximize profits. As a plumber I have been called out on several messes that were done by these guys, Not anywhere near professional plumbing. No permits pulled and horrible messes covered up. Had one case where newbie flippers told me they wanted me to work as cheap as possible because they were in over their heads and knew that they were probably going to lose out. I just walked away from that. Only God knows what they did or didn't do to get ouf of that one. I feel very sorry for the buyer of that house. I recall one woman on the phone with me who bought a flip. She was sobbing because the house would have to be torn apart to correct illegal plumbing. I told her to get a lawyer.
 
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Agree, neither care if your workmanship is good or not.
Actually they can tell on certain items. You can kinda get a clue if the electrical or plumbing was done professionally or not. Usually it's how neat the job is, DIY is typically sloppy. Electrical wires not nailed down and just hanging around, open holes, uncovered junction boxes, basic plastic and S traps instead of P traps in plastic in the kitchens/bathrooms, etc. A standard recommendation by most home inspections is to get an electrician or plumber to fix the obvious DIY jobs.
 
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I feel your pain. My 1974 house was "flipped". Looked pretty, but it was all cosmetic. Still had an ancient roof that needed replacing, gutters that were falling down and hadn't been cleaned in years, electric box that was rusting, and I had to replace the rotting timber under the sliding door because the caulking around the door had failed and had been leaking water into the foundation. Meanwhile, the shiny, new, CHEAP appliances in the kitchen are already giving us problems, and I'm having to go re-do some of his half-baked amateur electrical wiring because he evidently didn't know squat about aluminum wire. Already burned up two outlets because he evidently wasn't aware that CU-ONLY means exactly that. :mad:
Copper was a semi precious metal in the early 70s. Houses built in that era were wired with aluminum wire. If not wired carefully, it could burn the house down. I'd bring the house up to code with wireless smokes and CO detectors. My house had Aluminum wiring for the electric range and dryer I replaced it with copper early on
 
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Most people have no idea what is good work or the quality of the materials used. Its new its shiny. Look at all the rehab shows on hgtv they very seldom upgrade hvac, roof or water heater. Only what is absolutely needed. How many young people looking at a staged house are really looking at room size instead the furniture and paint color.
 
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Flippers might get burned since “consumer confidence “ in housing is at record lows which history normally indicates a 3-5 year decline coming



Confidence has never been this low and housing never so overvalued which might accelerate what is normally a glacial process
 
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Our house was a flipper.. yup about the same as everyone else experienced. A bunch of new drywall slapped on junk, electric wiring.. dangerous, plumbing.. I could go on and on. My wife was single and bought it before we met. How inspections didn't catch the wiring just goes to show how useless inspections are. If we were together at the time I wouldn't of bought it. So far though it was a cheap house and now it's paid for. I've corrected everything wrong and improved on it, turning out to be a good cheap house.

I'm convinced the only purpose of a home inspection is so you can back out once the house is contingent.

Well we found an outlet upside down, that doesn't meet code, we're going to back out and get a different house.

The amount of stuff the home inspector missed on my house is mind boggling.
 

JTK

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They were built nicely back then for the most part. I loved my first two homes that were both built in the mid 1950's. Your plaster walls are likely not old school plaster and lath. It's most likely plaster board / rock lath (any number of names). It was essentially the first generation of drywall where they nailed 2'x4' sheets of it to the studs. Covered that with a scratch coat which is like a cement, then covered that layer with plaster. Corners are first covered in a wire mesh. It's tough, resilient stuff. I've torn down a ton of it for major renovations.
 
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I'm convinced the only purpose of a home inspection is so you can back out once the house is contingent.

Well we found an outlet upside down, that doesn't meet code, we're going to back out and get a different house.

The amount of stuff the home inspector missed on my house is mind boggling.
Technically there's no right way to put in an outlet. The can be installed upside down, sideways etc. Some unions like to install it that way. Technically upside down might be safer as the ground is up, if you drop a piece of metal across something partially plugged in, nothing will happen whereas when they're right side up, you'll get some nice sparks and a blown circuit breaker when you short the hot and neutral lines.
 
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Technically there's no right way to put in an outlet. The can be installed upside down, sideways etc. Some unions like to install it that way. Technically upside down might be safer as the ground is up, if you drop a piece of metal across something partially plugged in, nothing will happen whereas when they're right side up, you'll get some nice sparks and a blown circuit breaker when you short the hot and neutral lines.

Many HD cords are flat faced and directional
They are intended to drape downward to go out an outlet enclosure on the bottom putting the least pulling force on the cord blades which helps keep them seated.

Thus Installing a receptacle upside down inside an enclosure is both wrong and a safety issue as the cover won’t close, also is hell inserting a directional cord in a mess like that, have to bend the crap out of the cable with the cord dead ended into the cover hinge.
 
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Technically there's no right way to put in an outlet. The can be installed upside down, sideways etc. Some unions like to install it that way. Technically upside down might be safer as the ground is up, if you drop a piece of metal across something partially plugged in, nothing will happen whereas when they're right side up, you'll get some nice sparks and a blown circuit breaker when you short the hot and neutral lines.
In my house the home inspector missed a lot of bootleg grounds in my house and a bypassed breaker in the fuse panel.
 
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Many HD cords are flat faced and directional
They are intended to drape downward to go out an outlet enclosure on the bottom putting the least pulling force on the cord blades which helps keep them seated.

Thus Installing a receptacle upside down inside an enclosure is both wrong and a safety issue as the cover won’t close, also is hell inserting a directional cord in a mess like that, have to bend the crap out of the cable with the cord dead ended into the cover hinge.
Unless there's been an update to the NEC which I'm not familiar with, there's no proper way to install an outlet so it's not a code violation if it's upside down. As I mentioned earlier, lots of union jobs have them installed upside down around here.

In my house the home inspector missed a lot of bootleg grounds in my house and a bypassed breaker in the fuse panel.
Normally home inspectors don't take the plate off an outlet so they won't see a bootleg ground. They mostly remove the panel to check for double taps, rusting etc. Not sure what you mean by a bypassed breaker. Breakers without a wire on it I don't think is a code violation. A wire that went directly to the main or a double tap would be a code violation. Some inspectors are better than others. I ran into one inspector who wasn't even going to bother to remove the panel cover because the house was built in the last 10-15 years so he just assumed that it was wired correctly. I pointed that out to the buyer and the buyer asked the inspector to remove the panel cover. It was fine though but he was cutting corners by making assumptions he shouldn't have.
 
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Unless there's been an update to the NEC which I'm not familiar with, there's no proper way to install an outlet so it's not a code violation if it's upside down. As I mentioned earlier, lots of union jobs have them installed upside down around here.


Normally home inspectors don't take the plate off an outlet so they won't see a bootleg ground. They mostly remove the panel to check for double taps, rusting etc. Not sure what you mean by a bypassed breaker. Breakers without a wire on it I don't think is a code violation. A wire that went directly to the main or a double tap would be a code violation. Some inspectors are better than others. I ran into one inspector who wasn't even going to bother to remove the panel cover because the house was built in the last 10-15 years so he just assumed that it was wired correctly. I pointed that out to the buyer and the buyer asked the inspector to remove the panel cover. It was fine though but he was cutting corners by making assumptions he shouldn't have.

Someone jammed a piece of 12 gauge underneath the contacts of the breaker so it would never trip .

But his outlet tester passed all of the outlets. When he took off the panel cover it should have been obvious that none of the circuits were grounded.
 
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Someone jammed a piece of 12 gauge underneath the contacts of the breaker so it would never trip .

But his outlet tester passed all of the outlets. When he took off the panel cover it should have been obvious that none of the circuits were grounded.
Can't quite visualize it. But I've probably been on 100+ home inspections as a real estate broker. I'm also an electrical engineer and got a copy of the NEC just for fun/reference. Mine is out of date though. But normally they don't remove the breakers so they're not going to see a bypass from what I gather that you're saying. And yeah, they normally just use those testers, you get two lights and the circuit is supposed to be good. That's sort of like outright fraud by the seller, most home inspectors won't catch what you're saying. Although I suppose the way you catch it is to notice that it's just two wires going to the panel instead of 3 wire romex.
 
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