When the time comes to sell your home, if you’re like the majority of homeowners, your goal is to quickly list the property, sell it, and move on to the next stage of your life. However, what if your home is in desperate need of repair? Selling a house that requires repairs can throw your plans for sale into disarray. Why? Because attempting to sell a home that is not in tip-top shape reduces your competitiveness… and the majority of buyers are uninterested in a home that will require extensive work.
Preparing your home for sale can be overwhelming in the best of circumstances. However, when selling a house that requires repairs, the cost and time involved can raise your stress level significantly.
However, selling a home that requires extensive repairs is not the same as selling a home that only requires minor upgrades. How do you know when to fix up your home for sale and when to sell it as-is?
Let’s examine the distinctions and consider your options.
Significant Repairs vs. Minor Fixes and Upgrades. What Should Be Done Prior to Selling a House?
Certain repairs are required when selling a home the traditional way. Generally, these large-ticket repairs are not cosmetic in nature; rather, they are deemed necessary for safety reasons. In many cases, such repairs will be flagged during a home inspection.
In some states, the law requires that certain defects be disclosed to prospective buyers, including the following:
- Termites and rodent problems and damage.
- Lead-based paint
- Drainage issues on your property
- Faulty foundations
These are “red flags” that inspectors and (occasionally) appraisers will note during their evaluation of your property.
What are the Most Critical Repairs Required Prior to Selling?
We’ll begin at the highest point: the roof. The roof must always be evaluated. A leaky roof or one that is old and ready for replacement will hinder a sale almost every time. Roof issues can also pose a threat to safety, so repairs are necessary. Roof repair is one of the more expensive home repairs and is rarely a do-it-yourself project. This necessitates the use of professional services. Expect to pay upwards of $10,000 for a roof replacement, which will take a few days to complete.
Another unavoidable fix? Repairing or replacing your hot water heater that is leaking. Water damage can result in serious problems in your home, so this is one repair that you cannot put off until the next owner comes along. Typically, the cost of a new hot water heater, installation, and removal of the old unit is between $400 and $2,000.
Electrical issues must also be addressed prior to selling. Wiring and panels that are out of date pose safety and fire risks and must be repaired. Due to the fact that the majority of electrical work is not particularly do-it-yourself friendly, you’ll want to bring in professionals for this common repair. Replacing an electrical panel cost between $1,200 and $1,700 on average but can cost up to $4,000. This repair will take between eight and ten hours to complete.
Pipes, sewer connections, and septic tanks that have been damaged will need to be repaired. Not only can these issues pose health risks, but they can also result in significant property damage if left unattended.
Sewer and septic system problems can cost thousands of dollars, depending on the situation. For example, replacing a septic tank cost about $7,000 on average, while replacing a sewer line may cost more than $5,000. Generally, these repairs take several days to complete.
Plumbing issues are another frequent occurrence that should be addressed prior to a sale. Numerous older homes have tree roots growing into the system or require replacement of cast iron or copper lines.
Foundation damage can result in malfunctioning doors and windows, sloping floors, cracks in walls, and water accumulating in basements and low spots. Expect to pay thousands of dollars for foundation repair.
Who Will Purchase a House in Need of Significant Repairs?
Spend some time researching your buyer pool before deciding to sell a house that requires repairs. What types of buyers are interested in homes that require extensive repairs? In reality, the majority of buyers desire a turn-key property. However, in a hot market with limited inventory, some sellers will be more receptive to purchasing a house in need of repairs. Additionally, some buyers actively seek out “fixer-uppers.”
House flippers, a.k.a. real estate investors, frequently look for fixer-uppers. They purchase homes at a discount, renovate them, and then “flip” them for a profit.
Then there is the shopper who is on the lookout for a good deal. This home buyer desires to live in a particular neighborhood or style of home but is unable to afford the market list price.
This buyer is looking for a bargain, and thus is more likely to purchase a home in need of repair if it is in the right location or has the features they desire.
Finally, there is the remodeler to consider. In most cases, this type of home buyer has the financial means to purchase the house they desire in the location of their choice. They do, however, enjoy the process of transformation, which is why they seek out houses in need of repair.
When Selling a Home That Requires Repairs, Weigh Your Options?
Let’s look at these possible scenarios for selling a house that requires repairs. Some have more expense than others and some can actually save you time and money.
Option 1: Make No Repairs and Sell “As-Is”
There are a hundred reasons why a homeowner might choose to sell their home without making any repairs or upgrades. Perhaps the damage is excessive. Perhaps they must relocate immediately. Perhaps they simply lack the funds or time necessary to make the necessary repairs. Selling a house as-is implies that “what you see is what you get.” This is a huge risk that most home buyers are not willing to take. Read our article, ” 5 Reasons to Sell Your House As-Is.”
For the seller, an as-is listing is frequently the quickest way out of a difficult situation. However, selling a home as-is restricts your selling options, and as a result, you should anticipate a significantly lower selling price. Learn more about selling a house as-is to an individual.
Option 2: Repair Only Enough to Make the Home Desirable
If you have the time and funds available, you can opt to perform only the simplest, quickest, or least expensive repairs. This may include, but is not limited to, the following: painting, landscaping, modernizing lighting fixtures. carpet cleaning or carpet replacement, window coverings replacement, cabinet hardware upgrade, making improvements to your home prior to selling will increase its curb appeal, making it more appealing to buyers. Additionally, because the house appears to be in good condition on the outside, this approach may make the larger repairs that remain necessary appear less daunting to potential buyers. Bear in mind that you will still need to price the home to reflect the remaining repairs.
Option 3: Completely Repair the Home
Homeowners with sufficient funds and time may elect to complete the entire list of repairs. However, it is self-evident that this option will be costly and time-consuming. Homeowners may be able to save money by completing certain projects on their own. Among the home repairs that are do-it-yourself friendly are the following:
- Interior design
- Replacing a faucet in a kitchen or bathroom
- Repairing drywall holes
- Gutter cleaning
- Tub, shower, or sink caulking
- Tile re-grouting
- Flooring made of laminate
Of course, many home repair projects are best left to the professionals if you lack specialized skills. From roof and foundation repair to wiring and plumbing work, hiring a professional may be more expensive up front, but will save you money in the long run.
Option 4: Selling As-Is to an Investor or Cash Buyer
If the prospect of deciding which repairs to prioritize, completing those repairs, paying for the repairs, and then marketing a house in poor condition causes you stress, consider a simpler solution: Selling to a company who will pay cash for an as-is property. No repairs needed. No commissions, no closing costs or fees. You can read more about how we work at Little Rock Property Buyers here. You can check out our Google reviews here. Not only is this the quickest option, but you will also save money and time by not having to pay for repairs and upgrades. Indeed, you will not be required to do anything to prepare your home for the market. Little Rock Property Buyers specializes in purchasing homes in need of extensive repairs. On day one, you will receive a firm offer. You can call us today for a no-risk, no-pressure cash offer. If it works for you and makes sense, we can move forward quickly. Call us today at 501-580-3035