6 Ways to Hurt the Resale Value of Your Home

When you first bought your property, you probably thought its value would only increase as the years went by. For most homeowners, this is also the case – particularly if the home is located in a desirable neighborhood and is close to schools and local amenities. So when everything is taken care of and it seems like to property would sell at a great price, you can imagine the homeowners’ surprise as they only receive half of what they expected.

It is, unfortunately, not that uncommon as many forget to inspect their homes throughout the years and allow for hidden problems to grow monstrously. Even something as simple as tidying up around the house before potential buyers come to visit can have an impact on the offers they receive – and you don’t want a cluttered bedroom to cost you tens of thousands of dollars.

wood floor

Here is a rundown of the hidden problems that could potentially give you a much lower price than you expected, as well as few tips that should boost its value right back up where it belongs. It’s one of the biggest investments you’ll ever make, after all, and it’s worth spending some extra time on it to ensure the best possible price.

#1 Cluttered, messy and filthy homes

Now, we’re not saying you are the owner of a particularly messy home – you’re probably just as avid with the vacuum cleaner as any. Some homeowners, however, seem like they completely forgot that they were supposed to invite viewers into their homes and the result is, of course, less than appealing.

Although it is worth hiring a home stager to fix your home up a bit before anyone comes to visit, you can take care of it yourself as well. The keyword here is that you actually need to take care of it – and not just the random dusting and making sure the kitchen is clean. We’re talking deep cleaning the property, removing any signs of your family, and never allowing any kids’ toys to even be faintly visible.

A neat and tidy children’s bedroom is alpha omega if you have kids, by the way. Potential buyers seem to have a particular distaste for messy bedrooms and toys – perhaps they see it as a tell sign of what is to come if they buy it. Nevertheless, they don’t want to see those toys or family pictures lying around so get them out of the way and present your property as neutral, clean, and welcoming as possible.

#2 Strange neighbors and noisy surroundings

Unfortunately, there are some things you can’t do much about when selling your home. Your ghastly neighbors, for example, have the potential of pushing the value of your property down if anyone figures out just how ghastly they actually are. While few home-hunters tend to knock on your neighbor’s door to introduce themselves, it’s easy to pick on strange vibes without actually meeting them.

Racks of laundry hanging to dry for everyone to see, heaps of shoes and toys outside their front door, a particularly messy garden – all of these are tell signs that we often register without actually knowing it. Even though your own home is immaculate, people tend to judge each other on who we live next to as we kind of have a lot in common with them.

A potential buyer will quickly steer clear of the area if your immediate neighbors show any anti-social behavior, so make sure that old lady next door is on her best behavior when those viewers come knocking.

Another part of your area you’d probably like to hide away is a noisy pub. It’s difficult to do something about, though, so do your best to have viewers over during the daytime when the pub is likely to stay quiet for a few hours. If the potential buyer is a young couple, they probably wouldn’t mind having such easy access to a lively place right around the corner, though, but consider what kind of people they are before saying anything about noise.

#3 Certain types of renovations

One would think that the amount of money you’ve put into building a pool or landscaping your gorgeous garden should give its value a good boost – yet, some see this as a downside. Pools in cooler climates may mean more work than joy and a buyer will not only question how often they’d be able to benefit from the pool; they’ll also consider how much work they have to put into maintaining it. The lesson is therefore simple; don’t go overboard and pimp your property up with a pool unless you live somewhere seriously sunny.

Landscaping is a different category that, to some, may make a potential buyer more inclined to decrease their offer. When you had the garden landscaped, it was probably due to an interest in gardening as you intended to maintain it yourself – or it was just due to the fantastic view which you hired someone else to take care of. When the buyer has no interest in gardening and can’t be bothered to spend money on paying someone else to maintain it, they’d undoubtedly see a large landscaped garden as a disadvantage.

Don’t go overboard if you want to spruce your home up with some bushes and greenery; just keep it neat and pretty and let the space do the talking.

#4 Strange colors

When you’re planning on selling your property, you’ve probably gone over a few articles on how to boost its value already. Perhaps you have heard about the trick of making the front door pop? Bright yellow doors have a certain old-school American charm to them which many home-hunters may find desirable – but pain the whole house in a shockingly bright color, and they might just turn around as soon as they’ve identified your house.

Think about the interior as well as try to keep it neutral. While it’s true that something eye-catching could speak straight to the soul of a potential buyer, it’s impossible to know what will discourage someone from picturing themselves living there and what will have the opposite effect. Your best bet is, therefore, to keep it simple and allow the viewers to imagine what they’ll be able to do with the space.

strange colored doors

A room painted in bright pink will not necessarily make it easy for someone to envision how it is to build a home and a life there.

#5 Inspections you should have taken care of

When you’re ready to sell and have a pretty good feeling that you’ll be able to harvest a good price, it’s down to the inspectors to give their verdict. You can’t sell a home with faulty wiring, termites, or problems with its plumbing – and by having it inspected sooner rather than later, you could stop it from causing further damage to your property.

Plumbing and termites are the biggest problems in this regard, and many homeowners face enormous bills when it’s time to sell as no potential buyer in their right mind would pay full price for a home with water damage, pest problems, or dangerous wiring. Termites, if left unattended, could cause irreversible damages to your home’s infrastructure, so give Go-Forth Pest Control a call to chase the intruders out.

For all you know, there could be a river forming beneath your property that makes the whole basement crack in less than five years. It’s the kind of property problems you’d never know about until it happens – unless you have it inspected right away.

#6 Haunted homes

While we’re on the topic of unwanted intruders; ghosts are the kind of unwanted residents that could bring the property value down through the floor, so try to keep quiet about the poltergeist living in your attic. It sounds surreal, but Haunted Housing Report found, in 2013, that 19 % would need at least 50 % discount if they found out that a home allegedly housed ghosts.

Some people may find it very intriguing and would love to live somewhere with a creepy history – but if you’re unlucky and keep running into the kind of people who positively would not live with spirits, you’d be better off with not mentioning anything.

And don’t talk about your ghosts to local mediate either. When we say quiet we mean absolutely not a word unless you’d like to have the ghosts haunt your property price later – this famous case from NYC showed a lady being sued by the buyers as she had failed to disclose that she had talked to media stations about her home being haunted. Wouldn’t it just be the creepiest thing to see on TV, the night after moving into your new home?

If you’re considering to buy a place that has a history of ghosts, it’s a good idea to tell the sellers to check the CO-levels of the home, by the way. Many strange sights and noises have been attributed to a high level of CO – which is not only very dangerous, but it’s also able to mess with our heads and cause serious confusion.

Take care of the above and you should be able to sell your home at a great price.

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