February 11, 2024

How To Sell A House That Needs Repairs: 5 Thing to Understand

An interior of a home that needs repairs

Selling a house that needs repairs is never an easy task. It can be challenging to find potential buyers who are willing to take on a fixer-upper and invest in the necessary renovations.

However, with the right approach and some strategic planning, selling a house in need of repairs can also be profitable.

In this guide, we will discuss how to sell a house that needs repairs and maximize its selling potential.

Assess the Repairs

Repairs needed to be made in an unkept kitchen
Repairs needed to be made in an unkept kitchen

The first step in selling a house that needs repairs is to conduct a thorough assessment of the necessary fixes. This will allow you to determine the extent of the repairs needed and estimate their cost. It's essential to be transparent with potential buyers about the condition of the house, as it can affect their decision-making process.

Set a Realistic Price

A homeowner setting a realistic price point
A homeowner setting a realistic price point

After assessing the repairs, it's crucial to set a realistic price for your house. Take into consideration both the current market value of houses in your area and the cost of the necessary repairs. It's essential to strike a balance between making a profit and attracting potential buyers with a reasonable price.

If you're unsure about how to determine the right price, consult with a real estate agent or appraiser who has experience selling houses in need of repairs. Real estate agents are aware of the local housing market, and can you help you sell your home as is according to the local market.

Highlight the Selling Points

Find the selling points in a home
Find the selling points in a home

While it may seem challenging to find positive aspects of a house in need of repairs, it's essential to highlight its selling points. These could include the location, size, layout, or potential for renovations. Emphasize these features when marketing your house to potential buyers.

Additionally, consider showcasing before and after photos of similar houses that have undergone renovations to give buyers an idea of the potential of the property.

Consider Renovation Financing Options

A bank
A bank

For some potential buyers, the idea of taking on a fixer-upper can be daunting due to financial constraints. To make your house more appealing, consider offering renovation financing options such as FHA 203(k) loans or Homestyle Renovation Mortgages.

These types of loans allow buyers to borrow money for both the purchase of the house and any necessary repairs. This can make your house more attractive to a wider range of buyers.

Be Prepared for Negotiations

Two people negotiating
Two people negotiating

When selling a house that needs repairs, it's essential to be prepared for negotiations. Potential buyers will negotiate the price based on the necessary repairs. It's crucial to know your bottom line and be willing to compromise while still ensuring a profitable sale.

Consider having a professional inspection report available to share with potential buyers, which can help justify your asking price and provide a clear understanding of the repairs needed.

Where To Sell A House That Needs Repairs

If you are not wanting to go through the traditional route like selling the house yourself or through a real estate agent you can always opt for a cash home buyer like Property Sales Group.

Property Sales Group

Our team with 37 years of combined experience specializes in purchasing homes in any condition, offering quick, hassle-free transactions that give you the peace of mind you deserve. Whether your house requires major or minor repairs, Property Sales Group is ready to purchase your home and help you get cash in your hands in as fast as 7 days.

Contact Property Sales Group today, and let us help you skip the complications and move forward on your terms. We offer a no-obligation quote and dedicated service to ensure that your home selling experience is as smooth and successful as possible!

Pros For Selling A House That Needs Repairs

A home that needs repairs
A home that needs repairs

Faster Sale Potential

One of the primary advantages of selling a house that needs repairs is the possibility of a faster sale. Often, real estate investors and house flippers are on the lookout for properties they can turn around quickly, and they usually have the cash on hand to close deals swiftly.

By targeting this market, you can avoid the lengthy sale process that typically comes with buyers who may need extensive mortgage approvals and inspections. Market your property by highlighting the potential return on investment for house flippers, which can attract a niche but very active segment of buyers interested in a quick purchase.

Less Competition in the Market

Selling a fixer-upper places you in a unique market with less competition. While most sellers are spiffing up their homes to attract the average cash buyer who's looking for a move-in ready dwelling, your property appeals to a different demographic. Contractors, DIY enthusiasts, and professional flippers often seek homes that need work so they can add value themselves. This means your house could be a big fish in a small pond, allowing you to leverage the limited availability of such properties to your advantage.

Opportunity for "As-Is" Sale

A significant benefit of selling a house that requires major repairs is the ability to sell the house as is. This approach can greatly simplify the sales process. By selling as is, you are transparent about the fact that no further work will be done by you, thus reducing your expenses for additional repairs or improvements. It's a straightforward deal where the buyer knows exactly what they're entering into, and it eliminates the back-and-forth that often occurs over fix-up credits during the closing phase. When you sell as is , the buyer needs to be satisfied with the house's condition upfront and usually puts in an offer accordingly.

Lower Property Taxes

Another pro is the potential reduction in property taxes leading up to the sale. Because property taxes are commonly based on the assessed value of the home, a house that requires repairs often has a lower assessment.

This can be a selling point for buyers who are budget-conscious and considering the various costs of owning a home. Being able to advertise lower ongoing costs for the buyer before they renovate can be a strong incentive for the price-conscious shopper.

Creative Potential for Buyers

Many buyers, especially those who are looking for a unique home or want to implement their own design preferences, are drawn to houses that need repairs. By selling a house that needs work, you're offering a canvas for creativity.

This is especially appealing to those who feel that every house on the market looks the same and desire to design a space that truly reflects their personality and lifestyle. Highlighting the creative potential in your marketing materials can attract buyers who relish the idea of customizing their new home.

Cons For Selling A House That Needs Repairs

A home that needs to be repaired and fixed up
A home that needs to be repaired and fixed up

Reduced Buyer Pool

Although selling a house that needs repairs can attract a certain niche of buyers, it unequivocally shrinks the overall pool of potential purchasers. Most homebuyers are looking for properties that are ready to move into immediately and may be deterred by the prospect of taking on a renovation project, which requires not only additional financial resources but also time and effort.

This limitation can sometimes lead to a longer time on market, as it might take some time to find the right buyer willing to embrace the challenges that come with a fixer-upper.

Appraisal and Loan Complications

Homes that need extensive repairs may have trouble with appraisals since appraisers often value homes based on comparable sales of move-in ready homes in the area. Moreover, buyers who are unable to pay cash for the home and the subsequent renovations may face difficulties in securing a loan.

Lenders are typically hesitant to finance homes that require significant work due to the increased risk involved. This could mean the pool of buyers is limited only to those with the means to afford cash purchases or those who qualify for specialized renovation loans.

Home Inspection Hurdles

When selling a home in a state of disrepair, one must be ready to face potentially harsh home inspections. Inspectors are trained to find and document all areas needing attention, and their reports can be extensive for homes with numerous issues.

This comprehensive list of defects can arm buyers with a tool for negotiation, possibly leading to more demands for repair credits or a reduced price before they're willing to proceed to closing. These findings can deter buyers who may have initially been interested but become overwhelmed by the scope of required work.

Negative Market Perceptions

A fixer-upper can sometimes carry a stigma, leading to negative market perceptions that can be surprisingly hard to shake. These homes may be seen as less desirable and could contribute to a negative halo effect that impacts the perceived value of the home. Even after repairs, people may remember the property as the "one that needed a lot of work" and this could affect future resale value or interest.

Additionally, if the home's condition is particularly bad, it can impact the perceived value of the surrounding neighborhood which is not only detrimental to the seller but to the entire community.

Frequently Asked Questions

A one story home
A one story home

What Types of Repairs Can Make a Property Harder to Sell?

Major structural issues, outdated electrical systems, and significant roof damage are among the repairs that can make a property harder to sell, not something small like a fresh coat of paint. These are concerns that can be flagged during a home inspection and potentially deter buyers due to the high cost and effort required to address them.

Buyers may also be wary of homes with foundation problems or outdated plumbing, as these can lead to serious complications and additional expenses down the line.

How Can I Determine the Right Listing Price for a House That Needs Repairs?

Determining the right listing price for a house that needs repairs involves assessing the extent of the necessary work and subtracting those costs from the average sale price of comparable homes in good condition within your area.

Consulting with real estate professionals who have experience in selling fixer-uppers can provide invaluable insights. They can perform a comparative market analysis and advise on a competitive yet fair price that reflects the home's condition. Remember, closing costs still apply to houses that need repairs.

What Are Some Tips for Marketing a Fixer-Upper?

Marketing a fixer-upper effectively involves highlighting its potential and appealing to the demographic that sees value in renovations. High-quality photos that show the space in its best light, detailed descriptions that point out the home's charm and potential, and transparent communication regarding the extent of necessary repairs can attract interested buyers.

Presenting the home as a blank canvas for personalization can also be a strong selling point.

Are There Certain Disclosures Required When Selling a House With Known Issues?

Yes, sellers are generally required to disclose any known issues with the property. Disclosure requirements vary by state, but normally include any significant defects that can affect the property's value or desirability.

Non-disclosure of existing problems can lead to legal liabilities even after the sale has been completed. It's always best to consult with a real estate attorney to ensure compliance with local laws and regulations.


A two story home
A two story home

Selling a house that needs repairs can be a challenging process, but with the right knowledge and resources, it can also be a successful one. Understanding the potential complications and being prepared to navigate them can help sellers make informed decisions and avoid common pitfalls.

Whether selling through a private sale or working with a real estate investor like Property Sales Group, finding the right strategy for your specific situation is key. With the right approach, you can sell your fixer-upper and move on to your next chapter without unnecessary stress or delays.  

So, don't let a house in need of repairs hold you back – reach out to Property Sales Group today and let us help you achieve your goals with ease!