I had easy experiences with my first two condos and also with buying my garage, but the house purchase continues to elude me.
First, we had the great leaking oil-tank scandal of 2013. Now we seem to have the low appraisal of 2014.
I went into contract to buy an as-is house near the Liberty State Park light rail. The house is nondescript on the outside and a bit of a wreck on the inside, but everything worked and it had a nice yard, and was out of the flood zone.
Unfortunately, due to the lack of similar comps nearby, it didn't appraise anywhere near what I was going to buy it for. I really believe in this area, so if there were any way to get it at a reasonable price, I'd make up the difference.
But to get it with its current appraisal, I'd need to fork over $61,250, then put another $30-40k into renovating. Once you get into a $100k up-front house, you start to think "Wow, I could buy a lot for that, and wouldn't need to lift a finger."
So strike two. Hoping not to strike out next time.