Fix it or Leave it?

This is the question on most seller’s mines when it is about time to sell. Will it be worth the expense of repairing and upgrading the house? There really is no way of telling if any one thing would be worth it for sure. But there are general guide lines to consider.

Who will be buying your house? Obviously you won’t know the individuals but you can guess the type of person. If it is a very low dollar house that is all-around outdated, it is likely going to be bought by an investor to be used as a rental. They are mostly interested in how much work NEEDS to be done to be fit to rent and getting it for bottom dollar. Certain things can still be done but don’t waist your money upgrading to nicer counter top or nicer carpet. If what’s there is in decent shape, skip it.

However, if it is a medium to high priced house, you will likely be appealing to someone who actually wants to live there. These are the type of people who will actually care about the style of the house.

So what should be upgraded? Take a look with fresh eyes at your house and fix the most obvious problems first. Does it need to be painted? That can be a worth while investment. Chipping paint on the exterior can make the entire house look poorly cared for. And the opposite is true. A very nice exterior paint job can make the entire house looked cared for.

Most importantly is to fix the ugliest and visually broken/neglected parts of your house first. Crumbling front steps take priority over wallpaper. Too much overgrown shrubbery takes priority over new windows. Stained and fraying carpet takes priority over upgrading the bathroom vanity. Water damaged ceiling take priority over new light fixtures.

Is your house almost immaculate? You might be appealing to someone who doesn’t want to make any repairs. If your house is “almost perfect”, consider doing what it takes to make it actually “perfect”.

One last bit of advice… clean and clean more. When you are done cleaning, clean even more. That is the cheapest thing you can do to a house that will give it a leg up. Shampoo the carpet. Wipe down the wood work and cabinets. Dust the fans and make everything sparkle. Buyers will notice, possibly subconsciously,  but they WILL notice a clean house and think more favorably of it.


If you have a specific question about whether a repair/upgrade is worth it, please don’t hesitate to give me a call. Angie Uttecht 605-350-2553