Maintenance Pre – sale
Question: Should I Fix Up My Home or Try to Sell As Is?
A Client question : I’ve spent a lot of time and money doing exterior remodelling of my home, plus a sizeable remodel of the master bath. However, the rest of my 22-year-old home needs attention inside. The bathroom upstairs and kitchen is dated. We have fairly new appliances, but the counters and cabinets probably need replacing. Should I fix up my home or try to sell it as is?
Answer: This is one of those questions where the answer depends on variables such as condition of competing inventory, whether it’s a hot, cold or neutral real estate market and the likelihood of return on investment.
Do Home Buyers Want Fixers or Fixed Up Homes?
Some homebuyers want to buy a fixer upper home, but generally these buyers want a home that will require light cosmetic repairs. Buyers who gravitate toward fixers are those who either don’t qualify to buy a more expensive home or those who want to make a profit by fixing the home themselves. I’ve yet to meet a novice first-time homebuyer who says, “Give me a home I can tear down to the studs.” Most fixer buyers are willing to do simple repairs such as paint the walls, put in new carpeting or replace light fixtures. They typically don’t want to rebuild a foundation or move walls.
Fixer-upper buyers will discount the price of the home to allow for the repairs and, for the inconvenience, a bit more. Say, a home is worth $450,000 fixed up, but it needs a new roof. A new roof might cost $10,000. A buyer most likely will not offer $440,000 for this home. Otherwise, they could buy an identical home with a new roof for $450,000 and not have the hassle. A buyer for this type of home might offer $400,000, or even less. In this scenario, a seller would be smarter to pay for a new roof and sell the home for $450,000.
Most buyers want a home that is in move-in condition. By not making repairs, you will limit the number of buyers who may be attracted to your home.
Before Fixing Up Your Home
Compare homes in the market to yours. If, for example, most of the homes on the market have upgraded kitchens, you should concentrate on fixing the kitchen. This doesn’t mean you need to buy designer appliances and tear out the cabinets. But a minor kitchen remodel might be a good investment. Sometimes, a fresh coat of paint on the cabinets and new hardware can give your kitchen an all-new look. Make a list of everything that is defective, broken or worn out. If buyers spot problems or malfunctioning systems, they might wonder what else in the home has been neglected.
What We can do for You
With our expertise and knowledge we can get you home ready before you enter the market. We will inspect your home and give you a free estimated price on getting you home ready. For a small investment now, it will ensure a better sales price and the opportunity to buy that bigger house you are looking for.
Here are 10 of the minimum improvements that will help you before selling your home:
- Patch all holes and cracks in walls and ceilings.
- Fix all broken appliances.
- Repair leaky taps.
- Replace worn carpeting.
- Repaint dark or marred walls with neutral paint (not white).
- Replace broken windows.
- Repair broken tiles.
- Change out dated light fixtures /ceiling fans.
- Clean and restore old decks and walk ways.
- Fix front yard.
A home that needs repairs will deliver a lower price and some buyers might not even look at a home that needs work.