Long ago I read somewhere that it is best to buy houses that need some amount of rework rather than those in tip-top condition. The reasons given were:
There is less competition from other buyers so can be be bought more easily
Less money required from mortgage lender which is the loan on interest
Once such a home has been bought, a person would spend money on it to bring it into good condition (which is subjective), possibly over number of few years. Usually this would (atleast) involve cleaning up the place, mowing the gardens, new paint, new wallpaper and new carpet at the very least.
In other words, find a run down house and then make it beautiful. Can get house for cheaper and then work to renovate it gradually.
Now my question is simple. Since such houses are going to be old and possibly not well maintained for some time, what are the main risks in buying such houses and what should one look out for so we don't end up with a rather expensive mistake and regret it?