Bought a house with a basement full of junk

Discussion in 'Philadelphia Real Estate' started by phillip4321, Jul 29, 2018.

  1. phillip4321

    phillip4321 Member

    Feb 12, 2018
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    A friend of mine and her husband just bought a house in University City about 2 months ago.
    Big Victoria style house in a great neighborhood - walking distance to Drexel and Univ of Penn.

    I went to visit to see their new house the other day.
    It was very nice and decorated nicely.
    Until I went down to peek at their basement.
    It was a dark but large and unfinished basement.
    But what caught my attention, dominating most of the basement was JUNK (somewhat neatly stacked from floor to ceiling). I could not quite describe it but all I can see is Junk!
    My first question was - is this your stuff that you moved in with?
    The husband answered .... "No, the previous owner left it".
    I was stunned. In respectful words, I paraphrased: "Why would you agree to purchase this house with this monstrosity?"
    His answer, his wife felt there may be a diamond in the rough and so they agree to purchase as-is.
    Keep in mind, this was not a topic of negotiation to lower the price for this couple to be the new owners of this basement pile of stuff. They actually saw this as a "bonus".

    Can someone help me understand that this is considered normal or acceptable?
  2. fiveomar

    fiveomar Well-Known Member

    Oct 21, 2009
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    Depends on what kind of "junk" it is- could be some antiques in there that can be used throughout the home, things that can be sold on ebay/craigslist, etc. The remainder can easily be discarded.
    O.H. Lee likes this.
  3. Musicinme

    Musicinme New Member

    Dec 2, 2018
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    No, this is NOT normal.
    As a realtor, massive clutter does NOT sell a house especially if the buyer intends to live in it.
    If the buyer is looking to tear down the house, then OK because the entire house including the massive clutter is JUNK!
    Anyone thinking there are valuables or antiques in that massive clutter (ie. seeing a diamond in the rough) is fooling themselves.
    The time and energy (and even expenses) you spent to discard and declutter and sort/post/sell on CL or Ebay is not worth it.
    Phillyxpat likes this.
  4. boognish

    boognish Well-Known Member

    Aug 17, 2009
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    I have no idea why this was bumped, but I couldn't disagree more with the post above. We didn't let the former owners sell us a house with a basement for of junk, but there was a good bit down there that I was happy to have. I found the former wooden railing that separated the two halves of my twin's porch, which I cleaned up, cut, painted, and installed on the side of my porch where the original had been replaced by a metal railing. I found original gingerbread woodwork and brass light fixtures. Pieces of wood can be invaluable for shims or fill in an old Victorian. Metal can be sold for scrap. I did finally do complete cleanup two years ago but that also included all the left-over construction materials from my own repairs/painting/etc. I simply bagged everything up and brought it to the curb over a couple of week.

    When you spend $500k+ on a house, dropping $500 on a clean-out crew shouldn't be a big deal. If it is, just negotiate that with the purchase. I just did it myself.
    OldMama and Hospitalitygirl like this.
  5. Basta

    Basta Member

    Dec 18, 2018
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    What a problem? Just find the cleaning company in your city and they help you. When I lived in Sweden I've always ordered the services of this company Flyttstädning It's really comportable - you just pay and spend your time as you want. Have you thought about it? Or is there editional problems which make it imposible to call the cleaning company?

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