What Home Repairs Give You The Most Value…
… and how to repair your house to sell fast!
Want to sell your property for top dollar?
House in shambles but you want to sell?
Well, Saving KC Homebuyers is going to give you the low-down on making repairs and remodels to help you sell your property for the highest dollar possible. Because truth be told… there are some “remodel investments” that just don’t give any money back. Many homeowners think that any remodel update increases the value of your home… not true. And after years of experimenting and remodeling ourselves, we’ve written this guide to help you make the right decision in the realm of “remodeling and repairs”.
Here we’ll cover:
- Do you even need to remodel?
- What remodel items give you $$$ back
- How and where to start — and mistakes that can cost you $$$
- How to sell without ever swinging a hammer, while still getting top dollar
So, let’s get started…
Do you even need to remodel?
There are times and places when you just don’t even need to remodel (or do much besides paint).
And it narrows down to 2 factors:
- Market cycle
- Condition of your house in comparison to the others
There will be “high years” and there will be “low years”. During “high years”, there are TONS of people shopping for homes, and buying everything no matter what they look like. But during “low times” there are very few buyers and they are picky and only choose the “best ones”.
Let’s give some scenarios to help…
Let’s say it’s a “high time” in the economy. And you have a basic tract home in a desirable neighborhood. And people are buying up properties around your town like crazy. And your house is clean, maybe just needs some paint but that’s all. The kitchen and bathrooms are originals from 2000. In that case, you DON’T need to remodel your house. Remodel probably won’t raise the price of your home one bit.
Let’s look at a second scenario:
It’s a stable time in the economy. But your house doesn’t look too good; The kids left big scratches in the paint, they drew on the walls, your kitchen and bathrooms are from 1996 or later, and you’ve got some chipped tile.
You take a look around your neighborhood and the houses that are like yours (in size and model), are recently updated and selling for $300,000 (for example). But the houses that need some work… are selling for $240,00 (if you need help figuring this out, you can call a local agent, OR call us at 816-608-8770).
A basic cosmetic remodel won’t be over $60,000 more like $25,000+ depending on the size and extent of the damage. So putting in some money, time, and elbow grease can give you some money back.
When do you absolutely need a remodel no matter the market?
If you have FUNCTIONAL problems in the house:
- Broken floors
- Non-working appliances, HVAC, electrical, plumbing, etc.
- Foundational issues
Sometimes this could be a house destroyed by tenants (if you have tenants and you’re looking to sell, make sure you check out our article “how to sell fast with tenants”
Sometimes this could be a vacant house that’s been trashed by squatters, or sitting, “rotting” away. If so, check out our article on “How to sell a vacant house for top dollar”
It’s Much harder to sell houses “as-is” with functional problems because the only buyers willing to take those are investors.
What items give you $$$ back
When remodeling, some items are just a pure waste of time and money; things that do not raise the value of your property one bit.
But there are others that you should be paying attention to, and can potentially lift the value and desirability of your home.
Let’s start with a list in order of importance:
- Broken “functionality” items (Lift value and decrease time spent on the market — If you have broken: HVAC, electrical/plumbing problems, foundational issues, Leaky roof, broken fence/gate, broken doors/windows, broken floors (chipped, cracked)… you need to get these items fixed ASAP. Because the only buyers will be investors.
- Bathrooms (lift value and decrease time spent on the market) — This should be top on your list. They bring up the resale value and they say you can actually get a 40% return on your investment. The average cost of a DIY bathroom remodel ranges from $2,000-$10,000.
- Kitchens (lift value and decrease time spent on the market) — This is the first thing buyers see, and it’s the one thing that buyers will pay a premium for if the kitchen is upgraded. Some things to upgrade are luxury appliances, quartz countertops, backsplash, new floor tile if it’s chipped (or just deeply cleaned if it’s really grimy), and new cabinets if they’re broken or extremely outdated (or just fresh paint if they’re decent)… The average cost of a DIY full kitchen remodel ranges from $5,000 – $50,000
- Exterior (Decrease time spent on the market but won’t do too much to raise the value) — Curbside appeal is what attracts good buyers. When buyers are scrolling through listings, they make their decision on whether or not the front looks good. Here are some items that can give your curbside look a “facelift”: fresh paint, landscape (trimming bushes, getting rid of dead plants and leaves, getting the grass green), new garage door (if it’s outdated (the old “death trap” doors buyers steer away from), or just give a nice cleaning and replace windows if its a newer door), Sidings (if they can’t be painted over)… the average total DIY cost of all these can range from $3,000-$8,000 for a 1,500 square foot house.
- Interior (Decrease time spent on the market and can potentially give you some lift in value) — This may or may not be needed (the first three tasks are TOP priority). But when a buyer walks through your house, what will they see? Clutter? Bubbled vinyl or laminate flooring? Old ugly paint? Old furniture? If you said yes to any of those, you might need an update. And the total DIY cost of all these can range from $4,000 (for only paint) to $12,000 for a 1,500 sq ft house.
Not a long list…
But it gives you an idea of where to start. Alright on to the next items…
How and where to start
Now that you have an idea of what you need to repair…
Let’s figure out if you’re going to DIY or hire someone. Of course, this is 100% up to you and your abilities, time, and resources. If you’re skilled, DIY can save you a LOAD of money. The quotes I gave you above are rough estimates with the lower ranges being DIY prices; meaning the lower numbers are material only.
But if you hire a contractor (and we’ll talk about how to hire one in a bit), you can double the amount you spend on the material.
How to hire a contractor
There are 2 types: subcontractors and general contractors.
- A subcontractor is someone like a painter, an electrician, or a plumber; someone you hire to do one job, like fixing all the GFCI outlets in your house, for example.
- A general contractor is someone who does ALL the jobs needed for your house. So if you have a “laundry” list of big repairs items like Bathrooms, floors, and paint… Then the general contractor will handle it all for you. He/She usually knows subcontractors. He’ll give you one big quote to complete the entire remodeling job.
Which to choose?
A general contractor will be more expensive…. But it’s very “hands-off”. So our recommendation is if it’s a very lengthy “to-do” list with complicated jobs, and you lack time, then it’s best to get a general contractor. If it’s only 1-3 minor jobs, then you can get away with finding your own subcontractors.
2 Words of warning:
- DO hire a licensed contractor… Someone who is licensed also has insurance for their business. Someone who’s NOT licensed and gets hurt while working on your property can sue you.
- DO tell your insurance about your remodel BEFORE you start… If anything happens (like a fire for example) to your home while under construction, your insurance WILL NOT cover the damage because you didn’t alert them about the work you were doing to the house. Some may raise the insurance just a tiny bit only WHILE you’re working on the house… but it’s worth the small cost. Because you can’t predict accidents. And if it does happen, you won’t have the damage paid for by your insurance.
A faster way to sell without swinging a hammer while still getting top dollar?
And if you want to skip all that time and money on remodeling but STILL get a top-of-market offer that’s fair based on the current value of your house…
You can always give us a call: 816-608-8770
We give fair offers based on current values.
Dial us or text me at: 816-608-8770
And we’ll be happy to assist you with your situation!