As I was doing research today previewing some homes for a McLean, Virginia pick of the week, I looked at a remodeled home that reminded of my house in Vienna. I pulled up in front a home on Panarama Court to “preview” the home listed by Paton Real Estate, and noticed a SUV idling in front.
It is a vacant home so I locked the door behind me as I took a quick tour of this McLean renovation.
The house was built in the late 1950’s like mine and they had bumped up and out creating a very attractive floor plan with a very nice gourmet kitchen, family room and upstairs with top notch baths. Overall, it is a very attractive home.
An interesting real estate conversation…
As I opened the front door, there were two men who looked like they were waiting for their agent. I never let people into homes who I don’t know, and one guy told me that he had just signed a contract to buy the house and was with his home inspector waiting for the listing agent to let them in for a look.
I asked about his agent, but no, he had done it himself without an agent. Big smile!
Buyers today really can find tons of information on homes for sale in any market across the U.S. thanks to the Internet. I always add plenty of photos and Google maps to help lookers. Ten years ago I was really the only one with good access to this data, but that gate has been opened and the horses have bolted for greener pastures. Trulia or Redfin are great research tools, and Zestimates can be addictive… some of you know what I am saying.
Well, my brief conversation with the buyer made me realize he was gambling on a $1.3 million dollar house. “So, what do you think of the price?” he asked. Yes, I did give him my business card but really talked to him homeowner to homeowner since my house is in the same generation as his and he really needed more than a home inspection.
Homes that were built in 1958 weren’t built for the weight of a second or third story and it is essential that the steel I-beam carrying the load be strong enough or reinforced. Also, they installed the sewer lateral in 1958 for a one or two bath home, but this home now features 4.5 baths. Orangeburg sewer pipe was used in many homes built in this generation and there is a history of failure, so, this home really needs a camera inspection of that pipe.
My $10,000 advice to that home buyer, “get a look at that sewer lateral!”
One colleague of mine with Nest Realty Group, Jim Duncan, keeps asking the question of the role of agents for consumers in the future. It is a challenge to answer since my job description has changed much over the past ten years. But really, this encounter at 1823 Panarama Court in McLean, Virginia made me realize what a vital role and value an experienced buyer agent like myself adds to the end result of buying the right house.
Here’s a consumer’s little YouTube video on his Orangeburg Pipe and his issues with it collapsing and replacing the entire sewer lateral (credit to cityzenvideo)… now do you think I gave good advice?
Yuck, sewage back ups stink! I just hope that guy found this post…
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