ARE PRE-LIST REPAIRS/UPDATES A GOOD IDEA IN THIS MARKET?
July 15, 2021
Both buyers and sellers ask this question. The answer is both yes and no. Many home sellers are reluctant to improve the home stating “it was good enough for us” and most importantly, will I get my money back or more by making improvements?
I just had this conversation today on a pre-list appointment. Kitchen lacked updates the builder grade countertop now 21 years old is both outdated and worn out. The appliances now 21 years old are needing minor repairs and are mismatched.
The YES answer depends on the market area of the home. If the home is in an area of move up buyers and most of the neighborhood has granite countertops and newer upscale appliances, its definitely a good idea to upgrade to what a buyer anticipates and compares of homes in that market area. Repairs/updates will definitely shorten the days on market and repairs will shorten a long list from the home inspection.
The NO answer also depends on the market area of the home. If the home is in the starter price points or investor grade, the answer is probably no, you will not see a $ for $ return on the cost of repairs, but it may shorten the days on market. Many investors will say “NO” for paying for seller made repairs as investors generally prefer to do their own upgrades/repairs at a lower cost to them and investors know their rental price points for profitability.
As to the starter market, most first time home buyers are buying at the top of their income and necessary expensive repairs or a list of inexpensive repairs may be a deal breaker to a first time buyer as they lack the funds at the time of purchase but may prefer to spend the $$ down the road as their income increases or their DIY skills grow.
Before you begin repairs or updates analyze the type and cost of repairs. Ask your neighborhood Realtor during pre-list what repairs/upgrades will bring $$ for every $ spent or return 0$, and which repairs/updates will shorten the days on market.
Renee Sommer, County Line Realty "selling Central Illinois"