Should You Fix Everything When Selling A House?
When selling your home, you may be tempted to fix everything—to have the place in the best possible condition to ensure a high amount of interest, maximise profits, and avoid any drama with purchasers. This is a normal feeling. But did you know that there are some things you should not fix when selling your home? While this might sound strange, and counterproductive to achieving the best possible sale outcome, it is true.
All homes for sale are subject to inspections. These are designed to identify any concerns with the property and allow potential buyers to make an informed decision about their purchase. They also provide sellers the opportunity to make any required repairs or fixes before the sale is finalized.
Some buyers like us offer cash for your home as-is, without the need for expensive repairs. No matter the condition of your home, removing the need for inspections, appraisals, and repairs can often be the fastest way to sell your home.
Repairs can be costly, and the last thing you want to do is spend money on things that are totally unnecessary. So, before you start fixing everything in sight, read this article. It will take you through what to fix, and even more important, what not to fix when preparing to sell your home.
Some things are required either under the law or by a buyer’s lender for a traditional sale to be fixed if they are identified as issues in an inspection report. These items are non-negotiable and can void the sale of your home if they are not attended to before the sale closes.
- Mold or water damage
- Pest or wildlife infestations
- Fire or electrical hazards
- Toxic or hazardous chemicals
- Major structural issues
- Building code violations
- Trip hazards
Should any of the above be included in a building inspection report when selling your home, you need to get them fixed immediately.
What Not To Fix When Selling A House
In addition to the above serious matters, the building inspection report may detail other issues with the property. But anything not included above is not a mandatory fix. It is crucial that you understand this distinction, as if you do not fix the above mandatory issues, the sale of your property could end up being void. But leaving the following issues alone will not have this result.
- Cosmetic flaws: Things like peeling paint, or even a hole in an interior wall are considered purely cosmetic. They are things which do not affect the structural integrity or overall functionality of the home.
- Minor electrical issues: Not to be confused with electrical hazards above, this refers to the occasional outlet or light fixture not working. It only includes non-dangerous electrical issues.
- Driveway or walkway cracks: These are deemed cosmetic outside the home and do not need to be fixed.
- Old and immovable building code issues: Some very old buildings may not strictly adhere to building codes. However, due to their age, they have been inspected many times previously and it has been deemed inappropriate, or simply too costly to repair them.
- Partial room upgrades: These can be difficult to determine; however, as long as the structural integrity of the home is not compromised, and none of the other above mandatory fixes are required, you do not need to repair these.
- Any removal items: Anything that can be removed from the home should not form part of the building inspection. Sometimes these items will be included though, so look carefully at the completed inspection report.
- Old appliances: Whether removable or built in, as long as they do not form part of a mandatory fix listed above, you do not need to repair or replace them.
Not fixing any of the above essentially makes them the buyer’s responsibility. While they may be noted in the building report, the buyer cannot back out of the sale at this point based solely on the above concerns. It ultimately comes down to the agreement between the buyer and seller, but you do not need to spend your money correcting these issues beforehand.
Hopefully this article has helped you to understand what you should and should not fix when selling your home. Some sellers fall into the trap of wanting to fix everything, but this should be avoided. You can save yourself a good deal of time and money, by using the above lists as a guide towards what to fix, and what to leave for the buyers to take care of. These items are important when selling your home on the traditional market, and that’s why homeowners across San Diego County work directly with us to get a cash offer on their property no matter it’s condition.
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