How to Sell a House As Is When It Needs Major Repairs

Selling An Old House

Do you own a house that’s been loved a little too much and now needs big-time repairs? Whether you’re in a hurry to move on, need to sell your house now, or you simply can’t afford the upkeep, you have options. All options lead to selling your home.

Depending on the severity of the home’s condition, you could make a few repairs and leave the rest up to the new owner. Or, you could look into selling a house as is.

Worried your home isn’t sellable because it’s too far gone? Many homes have issues, but many buyers overlook those issues or at least are willing to work with a seller who doesn’t plan to make repairs.

Before you give up on even listing your home, read our guide to selling a home when it has a few too many bumps and bruises.

When You Sell a House as Is

When people shopping for homes see an as is listing they rightly assume they’re going to look at a home that could need some major repairs. It also means the seller doesn’t plan to make the repairs. In most cases, a buyer and their agent also know the seller won’t likely leave money on the table at closing for the buyer to take care of the repairs.

That said, if you decide to sell your home in as is condition, you still have a responsibility to prospective buyers. You’ll need to disclose everything you know about what’s wrong with the home. Some sellers opt for a pre-listing inspection and share what the inspector includes in their report with buyers.

While there’s nothing wrong or illegal with selling a home that isn’t perfect, you do need to prepare for the likelihood of a lower sale price.

If you work with a real estate agent, your agent can market your home as a fantastic opportunity for buyers looking for a fixer-upper. Your agent can also position your home so it’s attractive to real estate cash house buyers.

Estimate the True Value of Your Home

Even though your home may need extensive repairs, it still has value. Putting together a valuation for a home in need of renovations isn’t only about figuring out the cost of repairs and subtracting those costs from the fair market value of your home.

A home in as is condition isn’t considered turnkey. A turnkey home is usually most attractive to traditional buyers—that group of home buyers who want to move in without worrying about projects right away.

For your as is home sale, you’ll need to consider what the real estate industry calls aggravation costs. Buyers of as is homes typically calculate in their heads how much they’ll pay in aggravation due to the necessity of making home repairs.

When you’re putting together your value assessment be aware that while sellers often underestimate the cost of repairs, buyers do the opposite. Buyers overestimate what they’ll need to do to get the home fixed up and how much it will cost them. Buyers may use this overestimation to justify a lower offer

Tackle Only the Biggies

If you have resources to make a few but not all repairs, figure out the high priority items and take care of those.

You’ll find many buyers who can deal with the peeling paint or the funky retro linoleum in the kitchen. They know cosmetic fixes are more economical for them than major repairs like replacing a furnace or dealing with mold.

Leave the cosmetic issues alone and focus on the biggies—repairs that can make a buyer walk away from a deal. Major repairs include major appliance replacements (furnace, water heater), foundation damage, roof leaks, evidence of mold.

These are the big-ticket repairs the average buyer doesn’t have the funds to cover, especially after coming up with a down payment and closing costs. You’ll still sell the home as is but you’ll tackle perhaps one big repair.

If you don’t have the resources to pay for major repairs, consider the following alternative.

Go for a Spruce Up

If you can’t swing the majors, invest your time and money on curb appeal both inside and outside your home. Sprucing up a home in as is condition goes a long way toward drawing prospective buyers.

When determining which projects you’ll invest in, consider which ones are most cost-effective. Spending a weekend decluttering inside your home and another decluttering outside definitely improves curb appeal and costs practically nothing.

Do the deep clean! A clean home immediately increases in value (in the eyes of the buyer) and smells better too (another plus). If you can’t afford a professional steam cleaning, rent a machine at your local hardware store and clean your carpets.

After you clean, roll a neutral color of paint on the walls. There’s nothing like a fresh coat of color to spruce up a home in disrepair.

Look for a Real Estate Investor

You have probably seen their signs around town. We buy houses for cash– or some variation of that. Whether you choose to take care of one or two big repairs, or you can only manage a light sprucing up, you’ll improve the chances of selling your home quickly.

One thing you should keep in mind is the fact that you likely won’t find a traditional buyer when you list your home in as is condition.  Investors, on the other hand, may come pounding on your door, excited to see what’s inside.

Real estate investors and cash buyers look for as is homes. The bigger the repairs, the more enticing your home will be to an investor. And while your home might not sell to an investor at the price you’ve come up with per your valuation process, you’re home is still marketable and attractive in this market.

Looking to Sell?

We hope after reading this post, you realize that despite your home’s condition, or your need to sell it due to financial hardship, it does still have value.

When you’re ready to sell a house as is, you’ll need a knowledgeable buyer who understands the value of your home. We’re that buyer! Contact us today and let’s get things rolling.


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