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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all,
I am looking at buying an old house (from 1907). I'm pretty sure the house has much of the original plumbing and electrical, although it was renovated in 1920. The house is 2 stories with a basement (unfurnished) and has 1.5 baths, with the full bath on the second floor. It is roughly 2000 sq ft. The seller's disclosure notes that there has been leaks and frozen pipes in the past. There is also no current running to the half-bath downstairs. In the basement, the ceiling (wood and plaster) has numerous patches, likely from old leaks. There are some old wires with old light bulb sockets exposed on that ceiling.

I really like the house and location, but I know I will have to likely redo all the plumbing and electrical. I may have to add another bathroom upstairs. Before spending a lot of time and energy investing in this property, I want to make sure the selling price is reasonable considering all the work that will have to be done, and I want to know where to ball-park my offers.

Can anyone give me a ball-park estimate for how much it would cost to re-wire a house, likely installing a new box? The house is in Saint Louis.

Thanks!
 

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It would be easier to guess your weight.
Call in local electricians and get estimates. You'll also need to call in guys to fix all the holes.
Ron
 

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As stated,

A ballpark price over the internet will get you within $100K of cost. There are far more factors/concerns that have to be looked at, beyond the age and sf of a dwelling.

Get some qualified electrical bids from people actually looking at the house and the real-time physical conditions.
 

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Get some qualified electrical bids from people actually looking at the house and the real-time physical conditions.
Pay the extra for a company that does high quality work. Avoid the low bid. Try to find a contractor who specializes in renovating older homes, and ask to see examples of his/her work. Good luck. Reminds me of that movie "The Money Pit." :jester:
 

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It would be easier to guess your weight.
:laughing:

Great analogy. :thumbsup:


gbwillner, an educated guess with a 60% margin of error I would say around $35k.

Also, have the basement ceiling completely removed. Then do all the mechanical work. Then have it replaced instead of repaired.
The mechanical contractors will wind up having to rip most of it out anyway and they will allow for it in their bids. Have it removed before anyone comes to look at the jobs.
This way you can have it done by a laborer, pay less for it and it will let the guys bidding have a MUCH clearer view of things.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
:laughing:

Great analogy. :thumbsup:


gbwillner, an educated guess with a 60% margin of error I would say around $35k.

Also, have the basement ceiling completely removed. Then do all the mechanical work. Then have it replaced instead of repaired.
The mechanical contractors will wind up having to rip most of it out anyway and they will allow for it in their bids. Have it removed before anyone comes to look at the jobs.
This way you can have it done by a laborer, pay less for it and it will let the guys bidding have a MUCH clearer view of things.

Thanks everyone for your help. I will call around. If it is around 35K, I have to allow for plumbing and account for that in my bid... so thanks again.
 

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Here's a tip.

Even if the bones are good, a house that old needs to be refinished.

The money spent stripping it down to the studs will be recouped with the savings from the plumbing and electrical. The work is now "new construction" and will be easier to bid and complete. It will also allow you to take care of other hidden issues.

You will of course have to drywall/paint/moulding but everything will be new and dirt/mold free.
 

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RS Means publishes books on labor rates, corrected for ZIP code.

With all the unknowns you should take a WAG at the highest $ you'd have to pay and how likely it is that you'd end up paying it.

Also decide what constitutes fatal flaws such that you wouldn't buy the house at any price. Precise measurements and tests might point out some of these ahead of time. You might want to spend quite a bit to get this info
". . .the expected value of perfect information (EVPI) is the price that one would be willing to pay in order to gain access to perfect information [about this house]."

A house like this might have a high cost of ownership over time, in addition to the upfront money you're paying.

Watch out for this trap
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sunk_cost
it can be a slippery slope.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
RS Means publishes books on labor rates, corrected for ZIP code.

With all the unknowns you should take a WAG at the highest $ you'd have to pay and how likely it is that you'd end up paying it.

Also decide what constitutes fatal flaws such that you wouldn't buy the house at any price. Precise measurements and tests might point out some of these ahead of time. You might want to spend quite a bit to get this info
". . .the expected value of perfect information (EVPI) is the price that one would be willing to pay in order to gain access to perfect information [about this house]."

A house like this might have a high cost of ownership over time, in addition to the upfront money you're paying.

Watch out for this trap
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sunk_cost
it can be a slippery slope.

Interesting. Can't say I didn't learn something new today.
 
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