Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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House Selling

Buy Low, Move, Sell High
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It is very common for businesses to buy something somewhere at one price, move it to somewhere else, and then sell it for a higher price. I'm not sure of anyone doing that for houses, however.

In the USA, there are middle-of-nowhere places where you could buy a house for, say, $50,000, and other places where a house could be sold for a much higher price --in San Francisco, the median price of an ordinary house has reached $1,000,000 according to a recent news article; that would be $950,000 of profit.

All that remains is MOVING the house from its original low- price place to the new high-price place. Although a certain number of houses do get moved each year, they typically are not moved very far. In this Idea we could be talking about moving a house 2000 miles/3200 kilometers.

That could be troublesome for ordinary transportation systems (narrow roads, bridges over the roads, wires over the roads, tree branches over the roads, et cetera).

However, a simple solution may be at hand (see link). It advertises a heavy-lift capability of up to 500 metric tons. An average 2-floor house is said to weigh (as a rule of thumb) about 275 pounds per square foot (of the first floor only, I think), which converts to nearly 1400 kilograms per square meter. If the 1st floor of the house has an area of 200 square meters, that would be 280 metric tons for the whole 2-floor house.

Sounds workable! The only question is, how much do they charge to move the house 2000 miles, eating into that potential $950,000 profit?

Vernon, Apr 18 2015

Heavy lifting http://www.varialift.com/
As mentioned in the main text. [Vernon, Apr 18 2015]

House for free http://www.castanet...itage-home-for-free
As mentioned in the first anno. [2 fries shy of a happy meal, Apr 18 2015]

Housing/Land cost spreadsheet http://www.lincolni...ata-msas-2014q1.xls
As mentioned in an annotation. [Vernon, Apr 18 2015]

House cost $40k move cost $70k https://www.youtube...watch?v=Ga_-fm2ovwE
dirt spatula [popbottle, Apr 20 2015]


       There are often houses for free if you are willing to move them, and I recently tiled one that had been moved from Vancouver in three sections.
It's a good idea if you've got the cash.

       [Vernon], I am not sure if the situation in the US is the same as in the UK, but I suspect it is.   

       What makes the difference in price is not the cost of building the house, but the cost of the land it sits on.   

       Of course, if you can lease the Varialift long-term, your problem is pretty much solved.
MaxwellBuchanan, Apr 18 2015

       Easiest way to test this idea is on trailer homes :)
theircompetitor, Apr 18 2015

       [MaxwellBuchanan], you are right; land values in San Francisco are indeed most of the cost associated with a house. In the mid-to-late 1980's it was about 82% of the total cost, and in 2007 got as high as 87% of the total cost, and then the Recession hit, and everything cost less for a time. In the first part of 2014 land cost was down to less than 79% of the total cost.   

       For detailed figures, see the linked spreadsheet (a download).
Vernon, Apr 18 2015

       In which case, what becomes of your $950,000 profit?   

       Incidentally, there are some blackspots in the UK where you can buy a house (including the land it stands on) for a few thousand pounds. I've often wondered about the economics of reclaiming the building materials.
MaxwellBuchanan, Apr 18 2015

       I read the linked article and found it interesting. Make sure [Vernon] that you only buy houses which can withstand 250- 350 km/h winds generated during transport.
AusCan531, Apr 18 2015

       and also the "up to 50km/h" winds the craft can fly in.
FlyingToaster, Apr 18 2015

       How much would it cost to add more land off the coast of San Francisco?
RayfordSteele, Apr 18 2015

       //1400 kilograms per square meter. If the 1st floor of the house has an area of 200 square meters, that would be 280 metric tons for the whole 2-floor house.//   

       Is that for all-timber houses, or for more substantial buildings? For a brick-built structure, suppose a typical room is 4m x 4m x 3m high. It has a 30cm- thick brick thick wall around it (this is allowing for the fact that internal walls are shared between rooms), meaning that you have about 15 cubic metres of brick per room, or about 1 cubic metre of brick per square metre of room. That's 200 cubic metres per floor (for a 200m2 house), or 400 cubic metres total. Density of brick is about 2 tons per m3, giving a weight of 800 tons total (ignoring the roof and internal floors and fitments).
MaxwellBuchanan, Apr 19 2015

       //30cm thick// Breezeblocks are hollow.   

       My house is a Thunderbird-2 container. Just waiting for the day: scanning the skies for Supermarionation.
FlyingToaster, Apr 19 2015

       //Breezeblocks are hollow.// Eugh.
MaxwellBuchanan, Apr 19 2015

       // How much would it cost to add more land off the coast of San Francisco //   

       That rather depends if you want it still to be there after the big 'quake hits. In 1906, a lot of reclaimed land on the shore experienced liquefaction.   

       Your species has an unenviable track record of constructing major urban areas in bad places. 'Frisco ? Quakes. Same for L.A. Naples ? Oooh, look, big pointy volcano thingy. Miami ? New Orleans ? Hurricanes and floods. Tokyo ? Quakes again ... Paris ? It's in france. Doesn't get much worse than that.   

       Swings and roundabouts. Pleasant climate, scenic terrain, fertile soil and good harbours tend to go along with hidden geological unpleasantness ...
8th of 7, Apr 19 2015

       Cost to move a double wide mobile home is around 3 to 5 thousand dollars.
popbottle, Apr 20 2015

       How about buying a plot of seabed off the coast and then claiming on flood insurance?
MaxwellBuchanan, Apr 20 2015

       Has anyone noticed that the house shown in [popbottle]'s link was built by a company called "Cretin Homes"? Really?
MaxwellBuchanan, Apr 20 2015

       Hey, even people from Crete need to live somewhere...
RayfordSteele, Apr 20 2015

       Ah, yes. If I remember, correctly, the 3 most important factors in real-estate are, "building, building, building!"
sophocles, Apr 22 2015


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