I saw an HONEST TO GOD HOARDER HOUSE this week. I’d raced out of the house for an early meeting with a client, totally failing to bring my boots. Yes, it’s August in Austin, Tx and I was wearing open-toe sandals.
My next appointment of the day was with the relative of the owner of the house in question. Sadly, the owner had been rushed to the hospital earlier in the week and according to this fellow, he’s been diagnosed with brain cancer. So he was quite unavailable.
About the House
The home is a 1-story, and its lot is the largest in the cu-de-sac. I was excited at the prospect of finding my next rehab. I’ve been investing in real estate for about 15-years now, and my favorites are homes which have double side gates and room for a great workshop out back, or the addition of an additional dwelling unit in the backyard. This home fit the bill.
The man I met was son-in-law to the owner and he was horrified to find the home in the state that it was. Apparently, it had been a long time since they’d come to visit, and the mental health issues his relative was dealing with hadn’t been apparent. They live in Arkansas on 23-acres. The property apparently, keeps them very busy.
Checking It Out
So, we looked around. I sniffed around. I couldn’t help it. I had to ask, “That’s not cat urine. May I ask what you feel that smell might be?”
He proceeded to tell me that the owner is incontinent and instead of emptying the hospital urinals into the toilet as is normally the process, the owner had become such a hoarder that instead, he’d taken to stacking the full containers along the wall of his bedroom.
He continued saying that when he got there, the piles throughout were chest high and there were rabbit trails from one part of the home to the next. He’d already made 10 trips to the dump, and it still looks and feels impossible to empty the house. Suffice it to say, it will take at least five construction dumpsters and a LOT of help to get the job done.
I left without making him an offer. My head was spinning from the stench and overwhelming number of updates required. He obviously had no idea what to price it at. And I did. It is a good shell and a good location, but that’s all. Most everything else needs replacing. What we’ll find behind the walls were a whole other thing. The possibility of bed bugs, or other pests were almost guaranteed. And most people today are overwhelmed to deal with only one of those alone.
What to Do?
At the price the owner was asking, the only way that deal would work would be to make it a homestead flip or a buy and hold. Let me ask, Dear reader. Can you imagine putting yourself, and all of your prized possessions into a home that has a strong possibility of being infested with bed bugs? And that smell. Oh my. I drove straight home, itching every mile of the way.
After walking away, I wound up coming up with an offer. Too late. It had already been snatched up by another investor. Seasoned or not, we all make mistakes.