Common Property Devaluing Mistakes to Avoid
To give yourself the best chance of getting a high price for your home, you should consider whether the property has any features that may bring down its value and put potential buyers off.
It can be stressful to think about putting your home up for sale because you never know what to expect and how much your property is worth exactly. Fortunately, there are some things that you can do to avoid common mistakes that can devalue a home and bring you in a smaller profit than the one you had in mind.
Before you put your property on the market, enlist the help of a good estate agent. They can help you identify and mitigate any potential mistakes that can decrease your home’s value.
Here is a short list of things to avoid or change before you start showing your home to potential buyers:
A Worn-Down Yard or Invasive Plants
Since the front of your house is the first thing potential buyers will notice, getting a low grade in that department is not going to help increase its value. First impressions matter. So, putting in a little effort to make your house have the most curve appeal it can will be well worth it in the long run.
First of all, you should make sure your yard is clean and free of any clutter. Next, you can add a few touches of décor to make it look more inviting to potential buyers and more like a home. Not paying attention to these details can end up costing you a lot of money and is guaranteed to decrease the number of purchase offers you receive and devalue your home.
Also avoid letting any overgrown or invasive plants put buyers off. Some plants, such as the Japanese Knotweed, that are fairly common, can affect a home’s foundation and end up costing a lot of money for consolidation. Buyers will surely look out for any potential damage-causing weeds. So, take care of them before they end up devaluing your home.
The same goes for run-down fences, lawn furniture, or wilting plants. They will ruin your chances for a quick and profitable sale. Remove any unnecessary accessories or any items that may not be to everyone’s liking. A neural, adaptable space where potential buyers can envision themselves is much more appealing and can be much more profitable.
If you really want to make an investment and give your home a value-increasing facelift, you can do a little work on the landscaping and add a few fresh plants here and there.
An Uninviting Façade
If your budget allows and your home is in dire need of it, consider touching up or re-doing the façade paint altogether. Cover up any cracks or faded paint and choose a neutral colour with a few highlighting touches.
There is nothing more inviting than a newly painted house. So this is a sure-fire way to avoid any curve appeal issues that can end up devaluing your home.
If your home has bright spaces and rooms full of natural light, this will translate into how much appeal it has to potential buyers and the value they are willing to pay for it. Plenty of light gives out a feeling of freshness and cleanliness. So, it’s no wonder everyone will prefer that to dark and dingy.
Make sure you don’t leave this detail unattended. Put a little effort into making the space feel brighter and more airy by removing any dark curtains or cutting or trimming overgrown trees or hedges that block sunlight. Also consider switching a dark wall colour with a nice neutral one that will open up the space instead of dimming it.
An Unappealing Kitchen or Bathroom
The kitchen and bathroom are the most important rooms in a house. When it comes time to sell your property, this is where potential buyers will direct most of their attention. So, paying extra attention to these areas will surely help you avoid issues that can devalue your home.
Kitchen and bathroom remodels come at a high cost. So, it’s only natural that any potential buyer will appreciate a newly renovated kitchen or bathroom. However, if you are not ready to make such a costly investment, there are still things you can do to make your home more appealing.
First of all, make sure the kitchen and bathrooms are clean. Next, declutter the spaces and make them look as inviting as possible with neutral décor touches. If you add a new coat of paint to the cabinets or the walls, don’t choose a bold colour. Instead, choose something that can appeal to a wider range of visitors and buyers.
If any appliances are worn-down and unusable, don’t think twice about replacing them. That is one cost you will not be able to avoid if you want to increase the value of your home. Investing in a new sink and new countertops are also good investments that will pay off and translate to getting a higher price for your home.
A General State of Disrepair
Bad odours, clutter, or unclean or beat-down areas are things that are guaranteed to devalue your home.
Before you put your house on the market, you’ll want to start with the basics. Any potential buyer will appreciate a space where they can just move right in and not have to do any repairs to.
Call professionals in to do any serious repairs such as a leaky roof, mould issues that need fixing, or a boiler that needs changing. The same goes for replacing any windows, changing or repairing the heating system, or fixing the busted plumbing.
There are other things that you can try your hand at DIY with. Provided, of course, you are at least familiar with the concept. Otherwise, leave any fixing to the professionals. Small cracks in the walls, a new coat of paint, cleaning the air conditioning filters. There are all matters you can easily take into your own hands and save some money in the process.
Showing off an inviting home is sure to appeal to potential buyers because it gives them the peace of mind that the space is functional and won’t need any repair investments too soon.
Talking about DIY projects, if you’ve started any and have not come around to finishing them, now is the time. You don’t want to be showing your home to potential buyers with a big hole in the living room or ceiling or with a half-painted kitchen cabinet. They won’t be thrilled and this will definitely devalue your home.
You should also avoid adding too many personal touches to a home altogether or consider taking them down or painting over them once you decide to sell.
Some issues may seem like quick fixes at first and you may be tempted to handle them yourself. However, do consider leaving any serious renovations or repairs to the professionals. A botched repair job you do on your own may end up devaluing your home in a heartbeat.
No one wants to walk into a potential new home and start adding the costs it will take to make it liveable. Consider this aspect above all others when deciding to sell your home.
UNPERMITTED Improvements or Alterations
Adding a new bedroom or bathroom may seem like a good idea and it usually increases the value of a home. However, doing any such work without getting the legal permits and approvals will end up costing you much more and devalue your home in the process.
Any improvements or additions you make need to take into account how the space functions and if the new layout will function well. They also need to follow proper guidelines to be considered part of the property. In some cases, illegal alterations can end up increasing your costs as they will need to be either authorized by the local council or taken down.
You should also consider that any additions you’ve made to your home without proper permitting cannot be marketed as such. So, the value you expect to get for a four-bedroom for instance will be equal to that of a three-bedroom if the extra bedroom is not authorized. So, instead of increasing the value of your home, you will end up decreasing it.
Check the local regulations that apply for any remodeling or alterations to be on the safe side.