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Old 07-04-16, 02:21 PM   #26
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

There are plenty of reasons to buy instead of rent. If you live where I do, you could have a 2500 sq. ft. place on 5 acres for a payment of $1,200 a month or a dated 1300 sq. ft. 1.5 bath place on a .25 acre lot for rent of $1,000 a month, you go buy. Every time.

If you are in Maui, you can rent a beach front condo (long term is different than short term, considerably) with 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, and a ground floor walk out to the grass and the beach for about $2,700 a month. That same condo would sell for around $700,000. I can't imagine why someone would ever buy in that market.
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Old 07-04-16, 03:02 PM   #27
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

I just looked at Trulia. The average price for a house in San Francisco is $1.2M. That's far beyond my reach. So if I lived there, I would be a renter.

Calling professionals to do work in your house is expensive. But it's cheap and easy to do most things yourself, like repairing a leaky faucet or replacing a light fixture. You have to buy the tools the first time, but the second time you do a job you already have a pipe wrench or a voltmeter.
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Old 07-04-16, 03:41 PM   #28
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

Another yes vote for the Dewalt drill. I just bought the same, but with hammer capability. I borrowed a friends set with the matching impact driver. I went out and bought my own, the next day.
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Old 07-04-16, 03:57 PM   #29
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

I bought a newly built home about 13 years ago, and besides a couple plumbing/leak issues, I haven't had to do a single thing. Although now (just because it has been more than 10 years), there's all sorts of little things that are starting to rear their head, like cracks from the house settling. (FWIW, I don't have kids/pets/family, which lessens the wear & tear - though I did have roommates the first few years) I'm gonna wait until I finish up my mortgage (should be another 3 years), then I'll put that money I used to pay my mortgage into fixing the house back up, like fixtures, plumbing, stucco, paint, etc.
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Old 07-04-16, 04:11 PM   #30
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

I guess I'll be posting to this thread after I've moved into my house.

For the longest time I've heard blanket statements saying buying is better than renting, and renting is better than buying. There's no definitive answer - it depends on the location, family situation, finances, housing/rental market, etc.

And the idea that you're always repairing/maintaining things in your house isn't accurate. Depends on how old the house and how well it was built - and luck plays a factor as well. There'll be stuff to do no doubt, but it could be minor and could occur infrequently.
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Old 07-04-16, 10:45 PM   #31
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

Paid off my house in March...such a freeing feeling.
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Old 07-05-16, 01:51 AM   #32
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

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And the idea that you're always repairing/maintaining things in your house isn't accurate. Depends on how old the house and how well it was built - and luck plays a factor as well. There'll be stuff to do no doubt, but it could be minor and could occur infrequently.
Agreed, but there's always that little worry in the back of your mind saying "I'm on the hook for all this. I hope I'm lucky and nothing major happens when I'm not home." Certainly insurance will (hopefully!) cover major losses. But, in Calif, normal home insurance plans don't cover earthquake damage. Also, there's the judgment factor, and the fact that it seems most minor incidents happen at inconvenient times. And the bending over for minor repairs, I'm specifically targeting plumbing, where it seems the locals charge $500+ per hour for any and all plumbing labor...
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Old 07-05-16, 09:29 AM   #33
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

I'm renting a house. Best of both worlds after I was a homeowner for 10 years. We have a pretty responsive rental company so no issues with things getting fixed. I have my own driveway and privacy in the house. Still pay utilities but that's standard around here.

Best part besides not worrying about unexpected expenses is having the freedom to move without worrying about selling first. I got hosed on my last home sale even though it seemed like we would make money. The market still isn't right around here. Any tax shelter I had from owning was wiped out by expenses anyway.
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Old 07-05-16, 11:57 AM   #34
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

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Originally Posted by Coral View Post
And the idea that you're always repairing/maintaining things in your house isn't accurate. Depends on how old the house and how well it was built - and luck plays a factor as well. There'll be stuff to do no doubt, but it could be minor and could occur infrequently.
Preventative maintenance, as well as how fast you tackle minor problems, is also a factor. Better to tackle that "small" issue now rather than later when it becomes a bigger, and more expensive, problem. Really, it comes down to being aware of what's going on with your house and if you think something is giving you a problem, or isn't working right, address it sooner rather than later.

Given the talk of DIY house projects, how do you guys feel about installing drywall? I've heard people say it's something two or three guys can do themselves and I've heard others say, "hire a contractor."
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Old 07-05-16, 12:12 PM   #35
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

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Given the talk of DIY house projects, how do you guys feel about installing drywall? I've heard people say it's something two or three guys can do themselves and I've heard others say, "hire a contractor."
Anybody can hang some drywall, tape it and slop on some mud. It takes some skill to make drywall look perfect.
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Old 07-05-16, 04:38 PM   #36
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

Making drywall look perfect is definitely a skill. I have done it a few times, and as funkyryno said anybody can hang it. Applying the coats of mud and sanding are almost art forms. The only way to get better at it is practice, but the average homeowner is not going to have to hang drywall that often. If you are really determined to do it, then watch some YouTube tutorials to at least get the basics.
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Old 07-05-16, 04:49 PM   #37
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

If you're going to DIY your home, make sure you do that shit right and get the proper local municipality's bullshit "paperwork" if required. Don't let your shitty DIY and not legal work become the next guy's hell hole.

When we were looking for a home here in Cali years ago the #1 thing that kept popping up was that many of the homes we were looking at had "issues" stemming from illegal DIY and shitty DIY work.
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Old 07-05-16, 11:42 PM   #38
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

GiantRobo makes an excellent point! My wife and I were watching one of those home improvement shows where the previous owner did all the wiring with extension cords. Yikes!

Back to the power tools for a sec ... Just saw a commercial advertising free lifetime batteries from Ridgid.

As for DIY projects ... I do not consider myself handy at all. I'm more of a "tear it apart to see how it ticked" (yes, past tense intended) guy. Since we bought our house about five yeas ago, my major projects have included:

Changing out toilets (reduced water use significantly)
Fixing kitchen plumbing
New front door and screen door
New water heater (natural gas) -- really thought I was in over my head, but it went fine
Numerous flooring projects (including stairs)
And even a furnace repair in the middle of a frozen night (still not sure what I did)

Google and YouTube have been very valuable to me!
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Old 07-06-16, 07:01 AM   #39
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

Finished my dryer vent yesterday, had to get a masonry drill bit and some cement screws I guess? Sorry most of this lingo is new to me I also silicone caulked around all sides to keep the water out. I think it turned out pretty well.

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Old 07-06-16, 07:32 AM   #40
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

You just improved your house. Feels pretty good, doesn't it?
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Old 07-06-16, 10:57 AM   #41
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

Good thread. If anyone lives in the northeast area and you want to know what a good set of trees is to plant in front yard that won't grow too big and that will also not damager any piping but provide great shade and privacy: Mulberry trees and variegated maple are the way to go.

Yeah I know, birds tend to get under the canopy on the mulberry's but you really have to be shitbag to let that even be an issue.
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Old 07-06-16, 11:03 AM   #42
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

If anyone is interested - here are the repairs I did over the course of the last two years:

Projects Completed:

Re-route thin PVC pipe for condensation drain to sump pump instead of the current floor drain by deep sink (standard, clear, rubber hose was used instead of thin PVC pipe – hose is routed up through the ceiling over to the sump pump).

Full Gas conversion - including new gas line ran into house, brand new furnace, hot water heater, and humidifier, Oil tank and furnace removal, Oil hot water heater removal, and landscape. Gas company had a contractor install gas line from the street to the house for free – it was free because my house is less than 100 feet from the street.

Basement fix: had wall (Driveway side) sealed and bright-walled.

Had new toilet and spacer installed (was leaking in basement).

Had Garage door motor ripped out and manual lock and handles installed.

New door knob and dead-bolt installed on Florida room door (This was actually a HUGE pain in the ass as the door was aluminum).

All new windows installed.

Replaced all basement hopper windows with glass block windows.

Tore down metal shed.

Ripped up almost half of basement floor tile.

Ripped out all excess cable lines in house.

jalousie window replacement (one small pane = $225) - Florida room.

New Carpet for Florida room.

Had gas line installed for dryer

Bushes for front yard (Spartan Junipers).

Trees for front yard (Mulberry (driveway side) and Variegated Maple (bedroom window side).
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Old 07-06-16, 11:22 AM   #43
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

Where do you find the time? Seriously. Between a 60 hour work week, friends, family, hobbies, rest - I have very little time for house projects. I only get to them when they're critical, and even then, sometimes I have to hire someone (usually after trying myself and making it worse).
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Old 07-06-16, 11:59 AM   #44
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

How big of an expense are windows? Our house was build in 1973, and I believe they're in need of being replaced, not right away, but living in Florida with the lovely weather we can expect to get from time to time, I'd like to start socking some money towards that purchase.
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Old 07-06-16, 12:00 PM   #45
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

I just keep things to a minimum, and replace only when needing when fixing. Simpler stuff I do myself. But heavy stuff especially...I wouldn't try it. Something I learned...fix things when you have a problem early...otherwise for whatever reason, things tend to pile up.

Some of the things i fixed:

DIY's
-replacing blinds (vertical and horizontal)
-replacing bathroom and kitchen faucets
-Replacing garage door opener - I had a Craftsman opener, and replaced it with a Chamberlain because it was a bit cheaper, and it was a direct fit for the unit, didn't have to replace other parts like chain and rail.
-Replaced garbage disposal (same size, so just replaced unit itself)
-Added steel front door
-Changed door locks
-Replaced aging faucet hoses
-Fixing various water leaks in toilets and sprinkler system.
-Replacing window screens
-Changed refrigerator timer


Paid repairs:
-Roof repair (roof leaks on a tile roof will be $$$)
-Replaced leaking bathtub
-Replaced wooden garage door with a steel door
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Old 07-06-16, 12:17 PM   #46
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

Well, I'm a single dude - when I'm not working out or working, I call around for quotes and just go with the best one - I usually just leave my side door open (my neighborhood is nice and safe and nobody can get to the dogs from the inside door).

I also do not work 60 hours per week so, that's an issue for you right there.

For 9 windows (one of them being a giant pane with the two small panes on the side for the living room) it was approx $3,890 or something. they did an outstanding job as well.
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Old 07-06-16, 01:55 PM   #47
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

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Originally Posted by slop101 View Post
Where do you find the time? Seriously. Between a 60 hour work week, friends, family, hobbies, rest - I have very little time for house projects.
You need to make the time. We bought the small house next door to us as a rental property (which we later sold), and spent damn near every weekend on it for well over a year.

The largest project we (mostly I, since my wife was pregnant at the time) tackled was the kitchen in its entirety, everything except for the countertop installation (which was included). I think it turned out pretty well, and ended up being one of the main selling points according to the new owner:



When I say everything, I mean everything...the drywall, the flooring, the lighting, the cabinets (which were from Ikea, and had to be completely assembled and positioned), the appliances (I hadn't purchased or installed the gas range yet in this picture), and even knocking out a wall where the counter and chairs are to open it up.

We're about to start some major renovations on our house (including a new kitchen), and I'm not inclined to do anywhere near that amount of work ourselves again.
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Old 07-06-16, 02:51 PM   #48
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

^ That's awesome!

My personal issue with doing work around the house (time aside), isn't even so much that I can't do it, but it's that I get super anal about it, feeling I have to do a perfect job and end up taking 8 hours on a job that shouldn't have taken more than 3 hours. But if I'm paying someone else to do it, I don't expect nearly the amount of perfection from them as I do from myself, even though I'm not a professional.
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Old 07-06-16, 03:07 PM   #49
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

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^ That's awesome!
Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by slop101 View Post
My personal issue with doing work around the house (time aside), isn't even so much that I can't do it, but it's that I get super anal about it, feeling I have to do a perfect job and end up taking 8 hours on a job that shouldn't have taken more than 3 hours.
I hear you. Measuring and remeasuring is always my downfall in terms of timing and perfection, particularly trim/moulding and ceiling fixtures/can lights.

Quote:
Originally Posted by slop101 View Post
But if I'm paying someone else to do it, I don't expect nearly the amount of perfection from them as I do from myself, even though I'm not a professional.
I definitely have the expectation that a professional can mud, tape, sand, and paint better than I can.
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Old 07-07-16, 06:25 AM   #50
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Re: The Home Owner Thread

My house is more than 50 years old, and I've been her for more than 15 years. There are dozens of things I've repaired or upgraded.

In just the main bathroom I've done the following work:

Replaced the mirrors when one fell off the wall.
Replaced the sink and faucet.
Rebuilt a light fixture. That involved replacing the terrible wiring that was inside the wall with Romex.
Removed the grab bars and installed better one. That involved patching holes in the synthetic marble.
Replaced the towel racks. Did drywall repairs while I was at it.
Painted one wall a different color with a strip of wallpaper at the top that was designed by Mrs Danger.
Installed a ceiling ventilation fan where there was none before.
Replaced the 5-gallon toilet with a low flow model.
Installed window curtains.
Had someone replace the windows, including the bathroom window.
This weekend I'll replace the diverter valve to the shower. Moen still makes parts for 1970s plumbing. Yay!
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