So, you have a house you’re planning to sell.
Maybe you’ve lived in it for a while or maybe it has been a rental. Either way, you know it needs to be cleaned up and updated before you put it on the market to get the most money on the sale.
Can you run down to The Home Depot and pick up some paint and flooring, or do you need to spend a little more time (and possibly a little more money), thinking about what you really want to accomplish?
We would recommend the latter: make sure you know what you want to get out of the sale, and act accordingly.
1) Want to sell it fast, with as little time and energy spent as possible?
2) Want to maximize your profits and have the time to spend fixing it up yourself?
3) Want to split the difference, sell high, but as quickly as possible?
Or something else?
If your goal is #1 (Sell Fast), you may want to consider selling to an investor. Investors buy at less than market value, but can frequently take a home off your hands in a few weeks or less and may be much less picky about the condition of the property. Some investors will pay 70% of what they think they can sell the property for when fixed up, but that all depends on the current condition of the property and whether or not it needs major repairs.
If your goal is #2 (Maximize Profits), and your monthly payments are low, you may want to do the cleaning and some of the easier repairs yourself. Remember to get permits for any major work that requires it – check with your city office for more details. A little elbow grease and paint can go a long way, as long as the home doesn’t require repairs to major systems. Don’t forget the landscaping!
If your goal is #3, we would recommend a meticulous project plan, with targeted improvements keyed to the areas of the home that will return the biggest bang for your investment. You should have the home appraised to determine current market value and a value the home would have it were improved or updated. In the absence of an appraisal, you won’t have one of the key pieces of information with which to make decisions, meaning, what is the market value of the home in its current condition. With that information in hand, you can decide what you can reasonable spend on improvements to bring the property in-line with other properties for sale in the local market.
Any way you decide to go, you should also consult with a local expert Realtor and visit other homes in the area that are for sale – do your market research, and make sure YOUR home is the best house for the best price in the area so that it doesn’t languish on the market, costing you money every month and eating into your return on investment. And my “best”, we don’t necessarily mean biggest, or best condition, we mean Best Value for the Money, in they eyes of your buyers.
Hi! My name is Alison Shuman and I am a licensed Texas REALTOR® and my husband and I own a real estate appraisal company, AppraisalIQ. We follow real estate trends in the Central Texas counties of Travis, Williamson, Hays, Bastrop and Caldwell and bring you the information you need about home valuation on our blog.