Everything You Must Know Before Selling a House That Needs Repair

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Property sales are a fundamental part of real estate globally. There are several variables to a property sale that both sellers and buyers need to consider. 

Putting your home up for sale comes with its peculiarities, even as you try to make a profit from it. However, selling a house that needs repair can feel like an uphill task, and it is easy to get intimidated as you put the property on the market without making several investments, renovations, or upgrades on it.  

When a house needs repairs, it can be termed a “fixer-upper property.” Wikipedia defines the term to be a property that requires repair – either through redecoration, reconstruction, or design – even though a person can still live in it.  

A survey – which polled over 1,000 Americans in need of a home to buy – shows that over 68% of millennials would be interested in a fixer-upper. The result indeed goes to show that selling a house in poor condition can still fetch you a reasonable price without significant renovations. 


Furthermore, when it comes to the sale of fixer-uppers, you don’t always have to make it look perfectly presentable. You only have to prepare ahead by knowing how to fix structural or safety issues in your location. For instance, if you’re in California, it would help if you considered what fixes are mandatory after a home inspection (CA, USA).

Understanding Your Potential Buyers

When selling a fixer-upper, you don’t leave things to chance. There are various things you must consider and learn along the way. First, you need to understand your buyer pool. 

In the real estate business, it’s essential to understand that customers don’t usually need a perfect-condition property. They are likely more interested in potential over perfection. Generally, different customers would like to buy a fixer-upper. Below are the three main types. 

  1. Flippers

Home flippers are the most common customer type you’d find when trying to sell your fixer-upper. They make money by buying homes at low prices, renovating them, and selling at higher prices.

Flippers typically see the property’s flaws from a different perspective – They’d consider it as having many potentials. However, bear in mind that selling to a home flipper doesn’t mean you must settle for less. The house may only need some work, but it shouldn’t make you desperate. 

Ensure that you contact a real estate agent to find out your home’s worth as-is. Then, you can turn down insufficient offers, as there are many flippers in the market. 

  1. Deal Hunters

Deal hunters are a slightly different customer type from the flippers. They generally consider houses for their location and would settle for a fixer-upper if need be. Deal hunters are more likely to utilize avenues to “sweeten the deal” for themselves, which is something to note as you go further into negotiations. It would help if you make some minor repairs on the house and leave out the major ones. The method gives you better bargaining leverage.

  1. Remodelers

Remodelers are customers who would love to convert a house – preferably a fixer-upper – into a property that suits their taste. Remodelers typically don’t try to beat prices or seek a bargain, which makes them arguably the best customer type for your fixer-upper. However, it is essential to know the property’s worth and keep an eye out for the perfect closing date on the deal.

Five Pro Tips for Selling a House That Needs Repair

Knowing a little about your potential buyer may give insights into how they’d bargain. However, you’d need some methods and strategies to make your property more attractive on the market. Below are some of the ways to make your fixer-upper more appealing to buyers. 

  1. Landscaping

Improving your fixer-upper’s landscape is one of the most effective ways to make an excellent first impression. You don’t necessarily have to spend big: you can start by cleaning up the yards – weeding and mowing –, planting a few flowers, and clearing out the clutter around the property. 

Landscaping can directly impact your property’s value by as much as 12% and add almost $2,000 in resale value. Overall, landscaping doesn’t necessarily have to involve buying new components and amenities: Thorough cleaning works as well.

  1. Emphasize the Best Features of the Home While Being Truthful Of Its Downsides.

It’s your job as a seller to showcase the benefits of your fixer-upper, even when it may need significant repairs. The house still has its potential and unique features, and informing prospective buyers about them might help your chances of selling it.

Ensure to educate your buyers on the house’s potentials and its possibilities once it gets renovated. Also, be upfront about any flaws the house has. Avoid trying to hide any faults in the area, as a home inspection may fish it out eventually. Not being open about the house’s defects may lead to legal actions against the seller. 

  1. Choose the Right Agent and Platform

Whatever strategy you choose to use, working with the right agent and the right platform is crucial to making an excellent sale on your fixer-upper. Choosing a real estate agent that understands the neighborhood and experience with fixer-upper sales is a huge plus as well. 

Also, choose a reputable home buyer platform with low fees and competitive offers. A wrong agent (or none at all) may lead to avoidable delays in closing a deal on your home. 

  1. Consider Renovation Loans in Your Listing

Renovation loans are one of the most valuable tools for an agent or individual selling a house that needs repair. Buyers benefit from this as they do not have to pay for upgrades separately. Instead, they can get a higher upfront loan amount approved to help them cover renovation costs. 

When listing your property, be sure to ask your realtor to assist in including renovation loans. Ensure to include the projected costs of renovation in the total loan amount.

  1. Price it Right

Selling a fixer-upper shouldn’t be about staging the house to sell as something it isn’t. You mustn’t overprice your property on the market. 

Before setting a price, get your realtor and calculate the renovation cost and projected property’s value after renovation. 

On the flip side, pay attention not to underprice your fixer-upper. It would help if you included the cost for the minor upgrades you made. Also, try to set the highest possible price without going too far off the average mark. 


Generally, selling your house is as straightforward as selling any other commodity. But selling a home that needs repair could be a bit more daunting. 

You have to make sure you follow the right strategy, as the wrong one (or none at all) could have you running the risk of selling the house for less than its worth. You must try to learn about your buyers’ pool, improve the property’s appeal by cleaning the front yard, and set the right price.

Furthermore, it’d be excellent to opt for the right agent or platform to sell your property at the right price. Fortunately, Property Escape provides the perfect opportunity for you to sell your fixer-upper quickly and at a bargain.


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