Posted by hk CA on November 05, 1998 at 15:24:18:
I have had several houses moved and there are some great opportunities . . . and many pitfalls.
On the up side:
The house can usually be gotten for anywhere between nothing and several thousand dollars, depending on the house and location.
There are companies that do nothing but move houses. They can tell you the problems involved and the expenses that you’ll be up against.
When you’re finished, there can be a substantial profit margin.
On the down side:
Lot prices have escalated over the last few years because we are running out of suitable land. Finding an affordable lot can be tough.
Moving costs can be extravagant if there are not accessible routes to take. Remember, phone lines may have to be dropped, bridges avoided, some roads may be too narrow, etc.
Will your local officials co-operate? Will neighbors object? I once had opposition by neighbors because I wanted to move an older house into a newer neighborhood.
Where to start:
Find out how much you can buy the houses for.
Find affordable lots, hopefully, close by.
Get moving estimates and advice from house movers.
Talk with local authorities about any problems they may foresee. Find out if plumbing, electrical, etc. have to be brought up to code. Find out the cost of impact fees for new utilites.
Figure rehab expenses and improvements such as driveways.
Lastly, do you have the cash to front the deal until you can get financing on the improved property.
As an investor, remember too, that if you can buy these houses really cheap, you can flip them to developers, property owners, and others for a few grand profit without having to do a thing with them. But usually time is short. When someone decides that a house is in the way and needs to be moved, they want it done yesterday.