Now that it is time to sell your home, you may come to the realization that there were some items that you should have repaired or updated over the years. The time has now come to make those important decisions.
You may have focused on the interior, and now your home is missing curb appeal, or you may have focused on the exterior, and the inside needs updating. So what do you do?
The answer will depend greatly upon a number of variables including your available funds, and the estimated time frame of completion of any work to be performed.
First off, it is important to consider the current local real estate market climate and the number of competing homes in your price range.
Another consideration is whether or not the proposed work can be completed while the home is on the market, as well as the likelihood of its reasonable return on investment, whether it be pricing or market time, or both.
If fixing up your home seems to be the best choice:
Make a list of everything that needs attention, whether it is defective, broken or worn out. Don’t be afraid to ask your agent for assistance on this. It is important that buyers do not spot problems or issues before you do. If a buyer sees a number of minor issues, they may think that there are more issues that have gone undetected, and pass on your house.
Here are a few low cost or no cost improvements one might make before selling a home:
Remove and replace dated light fixtures and make sure EVERY light in the home is working properly, and that there are no dim areas.
Remove excess furniture, clutter and personal effects.
Paint walls that need it, and if any room color is dark, paint it a neutral color.
Make sure that the heating and cooling systems are operating properly.
A few additional items to note:
Any plumbing issues and repair (including leaky faucets)
Replace worn or outdated carpeting. (If there is hardwood underneath your carpet in good condition, just remove the carpet)
Replace broken windows, rotted wood, and make sure all doors and locks are working properly.
Nest, weigh the cost of individual proposed improvements against the home’s estimated market value after the repairs or upgrades are completed. You may also want to view a few homes that your home will be competing with- if most of these homes have amenities or upgrades that yours does not, take that into consideration as well. If the kitchens are upgraded, you may want to consider an improvement, just don’t overdo it. If you will be replacing appliances, there is no need to go top-of-the-line. Mid-range is fine. Remember, those appliances would be brand new, and that’s a bonus within itself.
….or, will you be selling your home in as-is condition?
If you are considering selling as-is route, just make sure you have carefully thought out the following:
Is it that cumbersome or costly to do any repairs whatsoever?
Have you priced it correctly for the repairs, improvement that it needs?
Fixer-uppers have some appeal to a general market, it just depends on the scope of repairs, or improvements that are needed. Minor cosmetics won’t scare a number of buyers away who are willing to do some work by themselves, however when the minor repairs or cosmetics get to be too much to handle, they, too will pass. Limiting your market if you don’t absolutely have to is not the best idea. Remember, if an upgrade or repair costs $3,000 for example, you can expect the buyer to want to reduce the price by about $4,500 , just for the inconvenience of doing the work themselves. It’s not a rule of thumb, the ratio just seems to be a consistent pattern .
Ask a trusted and knowledgeable Realtor® for guidance as to what would make the most sense in your situation.