You need to check out Real Estate Negotiations: Surprising Tips That Can Be Helpful [add link] if you still haven’t. This piece describes the importance of negotiations in any real estate dealing and explains how playing your cards wisely can get you the best price for a house.
You might be thinking about damages on your property that can lower your asking price. These can be structural damages in the house or chipped wood; in any case, they determine the market value of your home. Finding buyers who agree to meet your quote despite the damages can be a tough challenge; that’s where negotiations factor in.
It’s not as much about selling your house at market value as it is about selling it as a home for the future family. You need to research and invest in staging and repairing the most glaring faults in your property before you can put it up for sale. This will help you leverage the new home improvements you’ve spent money on and ask for a higher price.
It also opens more avenues for upgrading the look and feel of your interiors with staging. The possibilities of switching the placement of furniture, hanging tapestries, placing area rugs, or adding a lamp are endless, and the limit is your creativity.
Cost Before You Start
Here’s a word of caution: before you get on with home repairs, it’s essential to have a cost estimate in mind for each project. This will also help you prioritize the repairs in order of importance. You may not need a new granite countertop as much as a bathroom renovation.
First, spend on necessary damages, and move on from there, depending on your budget. Investing to boost property value is a good measure, but you don’t want to overspend and not reimburse the cost after selling.
Prioritize Repairs Over Additions
You may want to add a deck, a window, or a fence around your garden. But this costs money that you may not have enough of. Replacing a window alone costs about $16,082. Multiply it by the number of additions you wish to make in your kitchen or living room, and you’ll get the total cost.
Once you have a cost estimate of all the home additions you want to make, compare it to the structural repairs you need. That’s an expense that you can’t avoid if you’re going to sell your house at a reasonable price. Anything above and beyond that will add to the aggregate cost.
Evaluate now if you have the kind of money you need.
- Are the home additions necessary?
- Are the additions you’re making what buyers are looking for?
- Will the buyers be willing to pay extra for the additions?
- Would you instead save the money and invest in furnishing your new house?
These are all critical questions to ask.
Whatever your answers may be, remember to prioritize repairing the damages over home improvements. Because buyers might buy if the living room has one less window, but they won’t give your property a second chance if the entrance door is faded or the pavement is broken.
Now for the repairs that you need to keep in mind:
Spruce up the landscaping
Did you know that an appealing landscape can enhance property value by 28%? It’s the easiest trick in the book to get more money for your house. Don’t pass up the opportunity for free money if you can.
You may not judge a book by its cover, but buyers will undoubtedly judge your house by its outlook. And landscaping is the key to that!
There are many details that you may have overlooked or neglected while you were living in the house. But when new prospective homeowners visit your home, they won’t ignore the wobbling fences, the ramshackle house front, the overgrown hedges, and the lawn that has seen better days.
You don’t need to overhaul the entire landscaping; minor repairs and additional detailing can spruce up the look. Manicure your lawn, mend the fences, repair the broken pavement, and (if possible) give the front a fresh coat of paint.
Refresh the Hardwood
Hardwood fixtures in the house are like the graying roots on your head; they shamelessly give away the secret of your age.
Doors, window frames, cabinets, and floors made of this material tend to show noticeable signs of age. They’re the first indicators of water leaks in the walls, floors, and ceiling and often sustain the most damage. Swelling, warping, cupping, and distorting is common in water-damaged hardwood panels and furniture.
Severe damage can also wear off the gleaming wood polish you once admired, leaving behind a discolored wood block. Sun damage can also cause bleaching in wood and turn your front porch’s dark brown paneling to a sandy white.
But replacing and renovating all of the woodwork in your house can cost you a significant chunk of your savings. Investing in damages that can be fixed otherwise is inadvisable. Instead, you can use your draperies, rugs, other furniture, and carpeting to your advantage to conceal minor damages smartly.
Bear in mind that these cosmetic fixtures only apply to minor damages. If there’s major damage on the floors or walls, you will need to get a replacement because it’ll downplay your property‘s appeal. A simple wood refinishing can save you from the expenses of getting new floor installations or furniture repairs.
Fix Plumbing Repairs
It’s a rite of passage for buyers to check the plumbing system of a house they plan to buy. A robust plumbing system inside the house is the backbone of a safe living space. They don’t want to move into a house that would require them to fix leaking faucets and repair the shower drains right after they’ve settled in. It’s as much of an inconvenience as it is an expense.
While you’re looking into indoor plumbing repairs, you mustn’t neglect the outdoor space. The front lawn or the car porch is the first place visitors see when they enter. And the scene that unfolds before them is one that’ll leave a lasting impression in their minds. You don’t want it to be marred by an unpleasant sewer smell rising from leaking underground sewage drains. The odors of open defecation are by far the most potent deterrent for buyers.
Middle-income families can’t refill their bank accounts right after they’ve withdrawn a big sum to pay for a new house. Expecting them to pay for hefty plumbing maintenance or repairs is unfair. And they won’t let this slide either.
Once their home inspector surveys your place and checks the taps and drains, they’ll report back to the buyers’ real estate agent. The agent will negotiate a lower price and accommodate the plumbing repairs into the price or ask you to get it fixed before they close the deal.
But if you’re going to handle the negotiations, you need an expert realtor by your side.
Phillip Fehler is a real estate broker at Fathom Realty. His experience in the real estate industry has granted him expert knowledge of the property market. He has offered his real estate brokerage services to many residential clients in Fayetteville and Fort Bragg in North Carolina.
His clients have always returned with positive reviews for his work ethic, commitment, knowledge, and service quality.