At Perdomo Properties, you can expect a seamless, personal and dedicated service throughout the buying and selling process of your home.
Our experienced team provides real estate services in the greater Houston area, and specializes in the Memorial Villages and surrounding Memorial communities, some of Houston’s most sought-after neighborhoods. We know the streets, schools, and the ins and outs of the area because we live and work in Memorial.
We understand the home buying process can be both very exciting and overwhelming at the same time! If you are in the process of preparing your home for sale or in need of buyer representation, we would love the opportunity to work with you and help you with all of your real estate needs.
With this in mind, we thought we’d share Houstonia Magazine’s article and put together a few answers to FAQs we get from homebuyers to help out. Please do not hesitate to reach out - we will help you every step of the way!
Houstonia Magazine: This is the only question on this list we can answer definitively—yes, you need flood insurance. Before Harvey, many realtors said it was only necessary when it came to certain parts of town, certain types of homes, or certain areas in the flood plain.
Harvey’s rainfall touched neighborhoods in every corner of our sprawling metropolis. And as Houston continues to add more structures, roads—anything concrete, really—we should expect to see more flooding. We all remember the definition of insanity, right?
Perdomo Properties: We strongly believe that when it comes to an asset as valuable as your home and the financial stress we’ve seen with people who lost their home and did not have insurance, we think that it is essential for peace of mind.
2. Should I buy a house that flooded?
Houstonia Magazine: Jim Blackburn, co-director of Rice University’s SSPEED Center and an expert in Houston-area flooding, believes homes that have flooded repeatedly, particularly those along our bayous, probably shouldn’t be there at all.
“We can do a lot of things, but I’m not optimistic we can protect them to the extent they need to be protected,” Blackburn says. “Those homes that are one, two, three blocks out from the bayou, that land could be returned to green space, and we could use that space to increase our flood detention capacity.” Indeed, Harris County has begun buying out properties in the hardest hit areas.
Luckily, many of these homes have first floors stripped down to their studs, which helps give the buyer a good idea of what they’re getting. Some homes built in the ’60s and ’70s needed electrical rewiring and new plumbing anyway; those expensive jobs come at a deep discount when there are no walls in the way.
Remember, though, just to get in, you’ll need a lender who does renovation loans, because you can’t get a traditional mortgage for a swamped house that will need a lot of work on the front end.
Kim Perdomo: That is a hard question. If you are considering a flooded home, I would consult with an insurance agent, remediation specialist, engineer and reputable contractor to make sure the integrity of the home checks out before taking on a costly renovation. Some HOA’s where homes have flooded are also changing their deed restrictions with regard to building requirements.
3. Where is the house placed on the lot?
Houstonia Magazine: A home’s distance from the street, plus how high it sits on a lot—whether the result of physical location, or pier-and-beam construction—can also factor into its odds of avoiding water.
Houstonia Magazine: Houstonians shouldn’t look exclusively at these to determine the likelihood of a home being inundated—remember, some of the areas that took on water during Harvey had a one-in-1,000 chance of doing so—but it doesn’t hurt to know where your potential home stands in the historic trajectory of Houston’s floods. Tools like the City of Houston’s Geographic Information Management System (GIMS) can determine exactly which flood plain a given home lies in, which, by the way, also impacts everything from insurance rates to resale numbers.
Kim Zander: In light of the weather events Houston has encountered over the past several years, this question is now pretty common. The answer is also quite fluid, literally and figuratively. These days I rely on calling our friendly insurance agent (shout out to Chris Badger, from Creekside Risk Management, who has been a wealth of information for us) to get the latest update on which zone a specific property is located.
5. Were mold tests done?
Houstonia Magazine: Depending on the type of home, there are specific steps for getting rid of moisture, disinfecting, and rebuilding. If the process has been done properly, there will be documentation for the next owner, and the building should pass a mold inspection. Make sure to get a certificate of mold-damage remediation from a contractor licensed in the state of Texas (some were not required to be licensed in the initial aftermath of Harvey), and to do an air-quality test, too.
Perdomo Properties: Ditto to what Houstonia Magazine says!!
Thank you for reading,