You’re preparing to put your home on the market or it’s already listed, and you’re trying to decide if you should make any repairs. If you’re like most sellers, you want to put in as little money as possible before selling the home, because your goal is to make money off the sale. That’s understandable. After all, you have other things, likely your next residence, to invest money in. But are there any benefits to making repairs prior to receiving an offer on your home? The answer to your question depends on what’s wrong and how much you want to sell your home for.
A Realtor can complete a comparative market analysis of your home to determine its fair market price. This will take into consideration multiple factors, including: number of bedrooms, number of baths, heated square-feet, garage spaces, age of the home, upgrades, condition, etc. Some factors carry more weight than others and sold homes give insight into which will add more value to the property. The fair market price is what the home should be listed for when it’s put on the market.
If the fair market value is a little below what you were hoping, repairs may be the key to raising it a few thousand dollars. This really depends on other comparable homes that are currently listed and the repairs that your home will require. As much as we would love for buyers to focus on all the things that make a home great, truth is they’ll be focusing on all its flaws and even the smallest ones can be glaring in the eyes of a buyer. So, why not get rid of them before the home is shown? Fresh paint, repaired trim, tightened faucets, etc. can make a world of a difference by taking the focus off the flaws and putting it on the entire package.
Something to keep in mind – if you have experience with a trade (plumbing, carpentry, painting, etc.), you could save money by completing repairs yourself prior to an offer. After an offer is received and repairs are requested, most buyers will require that the repairs be made by an independent licensed contractor, which can be costlier.
Now, what about the larger repairs? Should you bother with those? That depends on your budget. Substantial home projects will require a large upfront investment and not all have a high return. Sometimes, the best action is to adjust the listing price of the home to make up for the investment in repairs the new owners will have to make. For example, a very common issue that we run into is the age of the home’s roof. Most buyers don’t want to deal with having the roof replaced right after purchasing the home. If concern with the roof shows up often in feedback, it’s a serious issue that needs to be addressed with either a price adjustment or replacement. A worthwhile replacement would depend on the cost, available funds, and how the home’s roof compares to others in the neighborhood.
Taking the time to make repairs to a home prior to listing will always have a positive impact on how buyers view the home. A home that appears to be well-maintained over the years will instill a sense of trust and value in buyers, which attracts higher offers and makes negotiations easier. It will also prevent the loss of marketing time that occurs when a home goes under contract and the deal falls apart over repairs. However, your needs and budget will not always allow for repairs to be made. The best course of action is sitting down with a Realtor and discuss your options.
If you’re thinking of selling your home in the Wilmington area, give us a call at (910) 202-2546. We’ll be happy to create a comparative market analysis and share with you our marketing plan. We pride ourselves in being upfront and honest about what you should expect when listing your home for sale.