I am looking for advice here.
6 years ago, we took the sage advice to "buy the rundown house on the block and fix it". Except we never started fixing it. Now I need to do *something* with it.
We want to have more space, and the layout is weird (bathroom is just off living room so everyone hear tinkling while you do your business), so if money were no object we'd add a new master suite, take out the old bathroom, expand the kitchen, etc. The house is old (late 30's in Burbank, CA), and there are quite a few issues that are either caused by age or bad DIY'ers in the past*. Stuff like old plumbing, old wiring, etc.
Question is: Especially with the housing market today, what's the best thing to do? I'm afraid to add on if the value I get for it is going to plummet, but without some sort of change, I won't even be able to sell it let along be happy here. And everytime I talk to a contractor, the first question is "Why don't you tear down and start over?" which seems like a bad idea- the house may be old but its still worth something that just won't be replaced by a new house.
* Most notably the fact that to put in the tub in the errant bathroom, someone cut a 1" or 1 1/2" notch in the joist. =/