DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum

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bud16415 02-05-2013 06:27 AM

First post and intro. (Erie, Pa) :o)

Hello all.

I am a member of quite a few forums but this is my first home repair and building site. I’m fairly active in some snow plowing, bicycle and home theater forums and have been lurking here a couple days, and this seems like a friendly bunch of very helpful folks here and I’m very happy to be allowed to join and participate and where I can best and ask advice when I can’t.

I’m not totally green to house repair. I grew up in a time when everyone’s father was building his own house in the suburbs and most of us lived in the basement as the top floors progressed, helping dad with the build.When I got my first house in 1978 it was a 120 year old farm house that had very minimal updates and I tackled that doing a complete period correct restoration adding modern amenities.

About 10 years ago my nephew and I built a two story house for him from the ground up on a shoe string of a budget.

I work as a tool and die and machine designer, having access to some really nice CAD software and have been using that to play around planning my latest project. We are buying a property to live in that’s a 100 plus year old smallish “Victorian” for lack of a better classification that is up for short sale. It needs a total remodel to the inside and the outside is in pretty good shape being resided and roofed and some of the windows etc within the last few years. The price is so good we plan on doing inside whatever we want and feel safe we won’t over build the surrounding property values. I’m hoping the forum will be a place we can record the project and also ask for advice and comments as we go. I have found doing that benefits the homeowner by keeping the interest going and it benefits the community to encourage others to take on a project. The last hurdle to a closing on the property is coming up this week. It’s amazing when a property is upside down how many people are owed money and have to forgive loans as there just isn’t the value to cover it all. If all goes well before March first we could be filling a dumpster or two. Oh I forgot to mention when people walk away from a house they mostly leave all their junk behind and take the good stuff. :(

I mentioned above I have an interest in Home Theater and mostly front projection big screen type of theaters. I built a 120 inch theater in my old house and have helped build several others and have plans for one in the new house. If anyone ever needs help with a front projection media room I might be able to help. Mine wasn’t anything fancy mostly a man cave but was fun to build and enjoy.


oldognewtrick 02-05-2013 06:47 AM

Welcome to House Repair Talk Bud.

inspectorD 02-05-2013 08:32 AM

Welcome to the club Bud. We love pictures of stuff folks do. Have fun out there!:D

Wuzzat? 02-05-2013 08:55 AM


The numbers from this
seems to be saying, on average, your town is on hard times. :(
Do you get the same impression? Numbers are one thing but being there may be another.

bud16415 02-06-2013 04:45 AM

Thanks all for the welcome and I also love photos taking and viewing so no worries there I will do my best with before and after’s if we get the house.

As to the economy of Erie we are like most of the country feeling the effects of what is going on now. We may be getting hit a little harder even than most being up here in the aging rust belt. Erie was the beginning of the plastics industry, many don’t know that but that industry follows labor costs and much of that went else ware. Originally Erie grew off the great lakes fishing and we became industrialized building all kinds of boilers and steam engines. Later we had paper mills and lots of large equipment companies. Few are hanging in and now the last really big company in the area is General Electric where we build locomotives and off road truck drives. But GE is moving part of the operation to Texas so there is lots of concern over that.

The farmers are getting clobbered here like everywhere. Housing has really bottomed out around here. The house we are buying 10 years ago would have been about 4 times the value. These short sales are great for the buyer but the problem is no one can hardly afford them at bottom of the market prices because they don’t have the cash or the banks won’t loan money. The house flippers would like to buy them but again they don’t have a market for them after they fix them up. So they sit a couple years and then whoever holds the paper sees they can’t sell them and by holding them they will go to zero after a couple winters up here. So they let them go.

The biggest thing to try and remember is in fixing one up not to go to crazy if you ever want to get your money out of it. I’m sure we will go a little crazy as long as we have the cash flow.

Wuzzat? 02-06-2013 03:25 PM

Your house prices have gone down about 13%/year. Usually they go up about 5%/year.

That's quite a story. Born in NJ, I've heard of Erie my whole life and now I can put a personality to the name.


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