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Fix Up or Sell it as it is — Which One Should You Consider Before Selling a House?

Photo by Ronnie George on Unsplash

To fix up or sell as is, is an age-old dilemma homeowners face — and for a good reason. 

Ever heard of a seller’s remorse? It manifests in many ways, like having regrets selling underpriced after spending a fortune on repairs. Or that you could have gotten a sweet deal had you made just a few repairs. 

To save you from making an impulsive decision, I’ll give a brief but detailed account of how to make the right choice. And how to go about it in a way that’ll appreciate the value of your home.

Let’s get to it.  

Factors You Should Consider

Many sellers make a hasty decision to fix their homes or sell as is forgetting about the consequences. Will the buyer appreciate or even notice the improvement? What will be your return on investment (ROI)? 

The factors below should guide you on what to do with your most valuable asset.  

The State of the Real Estate Market

Figuring out whether you’re in a seller’s or buyer’s market is the knowledge you must have. It not only drives the bidding and negotiations but also if you should fix up your home or to what extent. In a seller’s market, you can get away with only a few repairs and still sell your home at a reasonable price. 

Fortunately, we’ve had a strong seller’s market with increased home prices, low inventory, and slashed mortgage prices since the post-pandemic. As a result, buyers, especially first-time buyers, will jump at the first opening of an affordable house on the market. 

NB: Regardless of the market situation, you will likely first receive lowball when you sell your home as is. 

Condition of Competing Homes?

Obtaining a Competitive Market Analysis (CMA) is a great way to estimate home pricing. But it can also give a clear picture of the condition of comparable active listings. And help you discover repair requests that took some properties off the market.

Equipped with this information, you can decide things to upgrade, repair, or if your home is okay at present. 

What Will Be Your ROI? 

Fixing up your home is a surefire way to increase its resale — if you choose the right remodelling or repair projects. For instance, replacing your garage door with a newer model is more lucrative than installing a fancy jacuzzi. 

Talk to your realtor or find an experienced one before deciding to make repairs or sell your home as is — they can present your options clearly to you. Also, an appraiser can help you determine approximately how much value renovations will add to your home after completion. 

When to Sell A House As Is

In a situation when your house gets damaged beyond repair — or too expensive — selling as is might be the only viable option. For instance, if it was ravaged by fire, caught in an earthquake, or a clan of hobo’s moved in when you were away. In situations like this, your buyers will be flippers and investment companies, and you bet it would go for way less than the market price. 

Regardless, selling your house even in move-in condition without repairs or upgrades also drops its market value. 

So when is it okay to follow this route? 

Although individuals are unique, the list of scenarios below pretty much summarizes the demographic.   

  • You honestly can’t afford repairs.
  • You have to move within a short space of time.  
  • You want a cash offer. 
  • You want to evade the stress of selling after a divorce 
  • You inherited the property and live far away

How to Sell A Home As Is 

Now that we’ve established the complications of selling your home as-is, you still have legal obligations when putting it up for listing. 

  1. You’re obligated to disclose issues and defects about the house. Withholding crucial information that’s later discovered will attract fines or legal penalties. 
  2. The buyer can still request for a home inspection, hence why No. “1” is a necessity and not an option. 
  3. Talk to your real estate agent to get an estimate of what your home’s worth. Online services only provide placeholders. 
  4. Clean up the house as best as you can to improve its visual appeal to buyers. You can box unwanted items, mow the lawn, and clean rooms and appliances. 
  5. Don’t get emotional when you receive lowball offers. Get in the spirit of negotiating. 

Fixing Up Your Home is Profitable 

Logically, making upgrades to a home should increase its market value. But only if you do it right. 

Looking back at the factors we earlier discussed, the first step to take when making home improvements is to talk to your real estate agent and appraiser. 

This way, you can evaluate your ROI on the house. If you are running at a loss or breaking even, it won’t be worth the investment. 

In such a case, you must rethink your choice of repairs and go for what matters. For clarity, I’ll mention a handful of the most profitable remodelling projects today. 

  • Garage door replacement
  • Manufactured stone veneer
  • Minor kitchen 
  • Fiber cement siding replacement 
  • Vinyl window replacement 
  • Steel entry door replacement 
  • Deck installment

Take a tour of your neighborhood to see conditions and upgrades made in the listed homes. For example, if most install reinforced garage and entry doors, it’s only reasonable that you do the same.  

Finally, some repairs are inevitable  if you want to leave a good impression on prospective buyers. Check out this list of basic things to repair before listing your home

Which is it: To Fix Up Or Sell As Is? 

The decision to sell your home is never an easy one. So is deciding whether to make repairs or not. 

If you’re cash-strapped or need to sell your home ASAP, selling your home is a viable option. 

Meanwhile, if you want to maximize the market value of your home, you’ll need to fix things up smartly. Research the real estate market, evaluate your ROI for intended renovations and observe listed homes in your neighborhood. 

Alongside necessary repairs, like repairing leaky faucets, replacing faulty electrical fittings, and patching up holes and cracks. You’ll discover upgrades with impressive resale value that buyers will appreciate. l

Make a comprehensive list of everything that needs repair. You don’t want potential buyers discovering new malfunctions as they tour the house.


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