I get lots of questions into my website. I encourage them. I answer every one. I give honest straightforward answers, maybe not the answers people want to hear. I thought I’d post the recent Q&A here because if one person has a question, others likely do to.
Q: I’m thinking about selling my home. It’s in a great school zone, a nice neighborhood, and is one of the largest models on our street. It has a three-car garage.
Here’s my dilemma: The house needs paint and carpet on the second floor. Would you suggest listing the house in the current condition with allowances, or taking out a loan to have aforementioned updates taken care of before putting it on the market?
A: A few years ago (2009) I would advise you to put your house on the market as is. It was a sellers market and you would have likely found a buyer quickly.
In today’s market however, you need to do everything you can to make your house easy to buy. The power has shifted. Buyers have more to choose from and will pass over a house that needs a lot of work. Our finance minister has been closing the big valve on the cash pipeline. House prices are high and home buyers don’t have a lot of extra cash to spend after they’ve just purchased a $300,000 home (one that would have cost $150,000 in the year 2000).
You mentioned that your home needs painting and new floors.
Paint and painting is relatively cheap. It is the best thing you can do to improve the value of your home. You will likely get all of your investment in paint and painting back in your sale price.
Floors are important too. It is well known in real estate that “flat surfaces sell homes”. That means, floors walls and countertops.
My advice is that you should do the floors, even though you will not recoup all of the money you spend on them. Don’t cheap out and install $1.00 square foot laminate flooring. Replacing the floors will shorten your time to sell and increase your position on price.