Author Topic: Demolishing/Renovating Older Irvine properties  (Read 925 times)

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Offline Modernjames

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Demolishing/Renovating Older Irvine properties
« on: March 02, 2021, 11:47:38 PM »
Eyeing an older home that looks very dated, and I wondered how much renovation the city/HOAs allow? Can homes be demolished and replaced with newer homes? If so, does that newer home have to perfectly mesh with the neighborhood aesthetic? Would a new house have to match the footprint of the old house, or can it be bigger/smaller?

As the older neighborhoods age, how will the HOAs manage uniformity across renovations?

Offline Soylent Green Is People

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Re: Demolishing/Renovating Older Irvine properties
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2021, 09:44:32 AM »
May want to connect with the builder of this property. They stuck a completely different looking home into an older Irvine tract with an HOA. Compare what it was before using StreetView.

https://www.redfin.com/CA/Irvine/19501-Sierra-Raton-Rd-92603/home/4740193

I'd think the biggest issue to overcome is cost of acquisition versus final value. This property sold in 2018 for $1.252 and is offered now at $2.5. The original footprint of the home was likely around 1800 SF. Now it's 3800 SF. The carry costs from 2018 to 2021 are significant and the rebuild of this home likely ran about $700k. Is the math favorable here? Hard to tell. Certainly a new home in the area is great, but it's also wildly out of place relative to the present neighborhood.

Any other homes the crowd can find as example? Would be interesting to see.
My .02c

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Offline irvinehomeowner

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Re: Demolishing/Renovating Older Irvine properties
« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2021, 05:14:17 PM »
Also depends on which neighborhood/tract you are looking at.

Some allow tear/downs rebuilds (like University Park, Turtle Rock and some others) but it depends on the HOA.
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Offline Cares

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Re: Demolishing/Renovating Older Irvine properties
« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2021, 06:31:09 PM »
Your safest bet? Call the city permits department to get their answer. You don't want to take advice from us on the forums and it turns out to be a costly mistake.

Offline USCTrojanCPA

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Re: Demolishing/Renovating Older Irvine properties
« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2021, 07:02:00 PM »
Your safest bet? Call the city permits department to get their answer. You don't want to take advice from us on the forums and it turns out to be a costly mistake.

Call the City and contact the HOA if there is one.  The HOA will supersede the City on what you can and can't do.
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Offline greatname

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Re: Demolishing/Renovating Older Irvine properties
« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2021, 08:37:18 PM »
May want to connect with the builder of this property. They stuck a completely different looking home into an older Irvine tract with an HOA. Compare what it was before using StreetView.

https://www.redfin.com/CA/Irvine/19501-Sierra-Raton-Rd-92603/home/4740193

I'd think the biggest issue to overcome is cost of acquisition versus final value. This property sold in 2018 for $1.252 and is offered now at $2.5. The original footprint of the home was likely around 1800 SF. Now it's 3800 SF. The carry costs from 2018 to 2021 are significant and the rebuild of this home likely ran about $700k. Is the math favorable here? Hard to tell. Certainly a new home in the area is great, but it's also wildly out of place relative to the present neighborhood.

Any other homes the crowd can find as example? Would be interesting to see.


I was actually thinking about that. I think this house is probably under-priced in terms of costs. From talking to a builder recently, I was told that cost of rebuilding 4000 feet will be at least 1 mil. That house went to escrow a year ago but it did not work out and back on the market. I toured this house 3 times. It is a smart house with nice appliances. My issue was it that the living space is all bedrooms and the second floor living space is quite narrow, as it only built on the periphery of the house. I wonder whether that was done because  the foundation of the old house could not carry a full second floor.

Offline Leaf

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Re: Demolishing/Renovating Older Irvine properties
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2021, 04:53:36 PM »
Check with the HOA first.  In general, City may ask for revision but will eventually approve your renovation plan.  However, HOA may reject your plan completely.  Turtle Rock is flipper-friendly, because it has HOA but no ACC (architectural control committee), so as long as the City approves, the project can start.

For other communities where the ACC does exist, it is very hard for a major renovation.  For example, some communities in the University Park, the ACC has very strict requirements on renovation and even a minor change needs the ACC's blessing.  There are a lot of old folks have been living there for a few decades and think their community is perfect and are against ANY change at all.

Eyeing an older home that looks very dated, and I wondered how much renovation the city/HOAs allow? Can homes be demolished and replaced with newer homes? If so, does that newer home have to perfectly mesh with the neighborhood aesthetic? Would a new house have to match the footprint of the old house, or can it be bigger/smaller?

As the older neighborhoods age, how will the HOAs manage uniformity across renovations?

Offline Soylent Green Is People

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Re: Demolishing/Renovating Older Irvine properties
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2021, 06:25:40 PM »
It's possible to use a renovation financing up to 822k for a full rebuild rather than paying cash out of pocket. Given TR home pricing today that loan limit is difficult to use, but in some cases it may still work.
My .02c

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Offline Modernjames

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Re: Demolishing/Renovating Older Irvine properties
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2021, 06:26:47 PM »
Is there a list of communities with ACCs available online somewhere?

Also, I’m curious how long everyone thinks it’ll be until the newest neighborhoods look dated?
Check with the HOA first.  In general, City may ask for revision but will eventually approve your renovation plan.  However, HOA may reject your plan completely.  Turtle Rock is flipper-friendly, because it has HOA but no ACC (architectural control committee), so as long as the City approves, the project can start.

For other communities where the ACC does exist, it is very hard for a major renovation.  For example, some communities in the University Park, the ACC has very strict requirements on renovation and even a minor change needs the ACC's blessing.  There are a lot of old folks have been living there for a few decades and think their community is perfect and are against ANY change at all.

Eyeing an older home that looks very dated, and I wondered how much renovation the city/HOAs allow? Can homes be demolished and replaced with newer homes? If so, does that newer home have to perfectly mesh with the neighborhood aesthetic? Would a new house have to match the footprint of the old house, or can it be bigger/smaller?

As the older neighborhoods age, how will the HOAs manage uniformity across renovations?

Offline melodypowell

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Re: Demolishing/Renovating Older Irvine properties
« Reply #9 on: March 06, 2021, 10:12:17 AM »
I live in TR, a house built in the 60s, people under estimate how easy it is to make an old home look more refreshed. A fresh coat of paint, and new countertops and hardwares in the kitchen and bathrooms make a huge difference at a relatively low cost. We did also change all the electrical wires inside walls from copper to aluminum ( or maybe the other way around I don't remember), which was the most costly thing.

 My whole reno costed less than 60k, the house is about 3200 sq ft. The house had been expended in the 80s to have a small second level by the owner then. I will give you a breakdown here:
1. Changing electrical wiring and box to safer wiring and higher capacity, adding outlets, change out some old style lighting and add nice ceiling fans, wall cutting and patching- 18k
2. Changing all countertops in the kitchen and a few bathrooms to nice white quartz, change hardwares to modern looking ones on all existing cabinets and a set of built ins (all cabinets are in good condition, but from the 80s) -10k
3. Re-Painting the whole house and some cabinets and staircase (low voc paint because I have kids) -8k
4. Master bathroom complete reno with floor heat and bigger shower, changing mirrors and toilets in all other bathrooms. labor 6.5k material 8k
5. New flooring upstairs 5k

To keep the cost somewhat reasonable, I purchased materials myself, including tiles( floor and decor) /floors (floor and decor/ home depot) /paint (0 voc)/hardware (rejuvenation)/mirrors (Costco/west elm)/custom 5 panel floor to ceiling glass shower enclosure/lights (rejuvenation/pb ) /toilets (toto), and got quotes for labor separately. I enjoyed the process and everyone has been to my house comment on how nice everything is and no one believes me when I tell them the total price. You don't need to spend 200k+ for a reno or 1m to rebuild unless you NEED structural changes, I enjoy my older home layout, love the older style fireplaces, and happy my kids don't have ensuite bathrooms.

In my neighborhood, HOA structural guidelines are pretty lose, it pretty much follows the city guidelines. You will still need HOA approval/neighbors signature and city approval of course if you are doing any structural changes. If you are looking at TR broadmoors or Sierras, then that would be the case for sure. If  you are looking at somewhere say university park, the HOAs there are a little more stricter but not bad, it is all just paperwork. You just need to call the HOA and ask. City guidelines are online. I personally only needed city approval for all my electrical work.

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