Valuable Trash: How to Sell a House That Needs Repairs

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Have you inherited a house you don’t need or want? Are you tired of pumping money into your dilapidated abode?

Selling houses as-is is never the easiest option, but refurbishing before you sell isn’t always the best route either. While some refurbishments offer an ROI as high as 95%, you’ll never get all your money back.

If you’ve got the cash to spare, it’s worth fixing some of the major issues before you try to sell your home. Yet it is possible to find a buyer without spending much extra money.

Here are some more tips on how to sell a house that’s not in the greatest condition.

Rethink Repairs

The quickest way to sell a house as-is is to lower your asking price. The first step is finding out how much it’s worth as it stands vs how much you could get for it if you opted for a refurbishment.

An experienced realtor will assist you with valuing your home compared to others in the area.

They can also advise whether some inexpensive repairs might help you achieve a quicker sale. For instance, a coat of paint could help make your home more appealing. Mowing the lawn will improve curb appeal.

Small things like these can mean the difference between getting buyers to look at your home or watching them drive by.

In some cases, it might be worth taking out a loan to finish some repairs if they’re going to bring a high return and help you sell the house faster.

For instance, a leaking roof can seriously hamper a house sale. You needn’t replace the whole roof to remedy this problem though, roof repairs may be all that’s needed, which will allow you to save money and spend on best quartz countertops instead.

While you won’t get as much money as you would for a house with a new roof, you’ll get a lot more interest than if the roof was still leaking.

If you don’t want to sacrifice time and money in this way, there are other things you can do.

Incentivize the Sale

Apart from a low price, there are a few other ways to fast-track the sale of a house by sweetening the deal for homebuyers. These are:

  • Offering to pay a portion of the repairs
  • Paying some of the closing costs
  • Buying down the loan
  • Throwing in some creative extras like paying 12-months worth of lawn care
  • Offering free services from your own business as part of the deal

These far-fetched tactics can really help get buyers thinking beyond the cost of impending repairs to the home. They’ll definitely make your house more appealing than similar homes in the area.

Look for an Investor

Do you know of real estate investors looking for properties and buying houses in your area? Often these developers aren’t concerned about the home’s appearance at all.

They may have plans to tear it down and build a few condos in its place or combine it with surrounding properties to build a housing complex.

Investors often buy homes that are in bad shape because they have an existing market for them. They may already have clients who want to buy a home in your neighborhood as a fixer-upper.

Sell to a Cash Buyer

A quick internet search using the term, ‘we buy houses‘ will reveal plenty of companies in your area that buy houses in any condition for cash.

These professionals are aware of how long it takes to sell a home and have the time and resources to wait for buyers to come along.

You’ll have to take a low price when you sell a house for cash to these types of investors. Yet, it could be worth your while if the house is costing you money while you wait for it to sell.

Always make sure you understand exactly what you’re getting into if you choose to go down this unconventional route. Ask questions about what’s expected from you and what you can expect from the buyer in return.

Advertise Your Home as a Fixer Upper

Thanks to HGTV, fixer-uppers are hot property right now. While most homebuyers want a turnkey property, there are also plenty of DIY enthusiasts who’d love to have a shot at trying out a full refurbishment.

These brave souls can see the potential in any home, but you’ll need to find them first.

You can go the traditional route by placing a classified ad online or in your local newspaper or look for online communities that cater to these folks and reach out to them there.

Play Up to Deal Hunters

Another market for your run-down home is those people who want to live in your area but can’t afford the usual prices. One of the best ways to sell a house as-is is to ask your realtor to reach out to these buyers.

These homebuyers are keen to overlook any pending repairs in favor of a good location. They know they can refurbish the home over time and end up with a valuable property that they couldn’t afford otherwise.

When you advertise your home be sure to highlight all the great characteristics of your neighborhood so you can attract the attention of these types of buyers.

More Ways to Sell a House

If you’d rather go the conventional route by doing the necessary repairs before you sell a house, you’ll need patience and resources to pull it off.

Refurbishing a home can become an expensive undertaking for the uninitiated homeowner, so be sure to research all your options before you get started.

Browse our lifestyle section for more tips on buying and selling houses and how to navigate the process of home repairs.

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Are you unable or unwilling to fix up your house? Good news: You can sell a house that needs repairs. Here's how to do it.