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Thursday, December 14, 2017

How to lower the value of your house

I write this tongue in cheek -- but really, there are dozens of articles about what can increase the value of your home and tips for selling.  But has anyone ever spelled out things that will really devalue your home?

Buyers today come with their calculators when they are evaluating a house.  They will quickly deduct from the purchase price, if they don't think these issues are factored into the asking price.  

Do any of these things stand out with your house?  

Garages
In our market, garages are pretty important.   In general buyers prefer an attached garage with a minimum of two spaces.   Anything less than that may be perceived a real negative.  Not only that, most people want the additional storage space that a garage can provide.  

If you fall into this category of "less than," look for ways to add value.  Make sure the garage is well-organized and de-cluttered to, at least, give the illusion of more space.   

Consider adding an additional "landing pad" for that extra car.  One technique. that I have seen that is environmentally friendly, is brick blocks with grass growing in between.  

Swimming Pools
Swimming pools are tricky.   Having a pool can be a mixed blessing.  In our climate, buyers rarely consider a pool an increase to the value of the home.   In fact, for some people it will devalue your home.   Think twice before installing a pool at your house. 

Tired Roofs
In the last several years, I have found myself with a roof being a major issue from the home inspection.  Buyers will rarely pay a premium for a new roof, but they will often devalue a home with an old roof.  Sellers, if your roof is at the end of its useful life, I would think seriously about replacing it before you put your home on the market.  

Limited Storage
Buyers today want good storage and great closet space.   Look at your house with an objective eye and figure out ways to improve storage.   If you need some ideas, check out my Pinterest board on storage and closets

Dated Appliances
Nothing dates a kitchen or house faster than old appliances.  Buyers are putting out a lot of money to purchase they house -- they don't want to have to continue to put out money to buy new appliances.  New appliances are relatively inexpensive and they can make a world of difference to a buyer who is looking homes.

Problems of a Health and Safety Nature
As you may know, I recommend pre-listing inspections.   Inspectors may point out issues like asbestos, mold, radon, poor electrical connections, etc.  If you think you may have these problems, get them addressed early -- before you put your house on the market.  Trust me when I say, that they will surface during the inspection phase and raise red flags to buyers.

Deferred Maintenance
If your home has too many things wrong from squeaky hinges to torn screens, it can be a real deal-breaker for many buyers. Unless they’re specifically looking for a project, they aren’t interested in taking care of your maintenance issues.

Exterior Problems
You may be saving money by ignoring exterior paint jobs and tree trimming, but you’re also decreasing the value of your home right upfront.  Nice curb appeal is critical and that means a clean paint job, polished hardware, tidy mailbox, excellent yard clean up and trimming, clean gutters and foundations that are not pooling water -- good drainage away from the house.  

Bad Location
Location is everything in real estate.  When buying a home pick your location carefully.   The Neighborhood Features That Drag Down Your Home Value—Ranked:




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