Home Selling in Hamburg>Question Details

Snow, Home Seller in Hamburg, NJ

Is it better to upgrade the house for Hardwood floors and Granite countertop before the listing or keep the same but at lower price?

Asked by Snow, Hamburg, NJ Wed Mar 2, 2011

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25
Bingo Michelle! Good Answer!

Comps-Schmomps! The house will sell when looking better than your competition! Buyers in todays market want to buy a move in ready home.

You do not need 19 realtors offering a CMA for your property.. even if you did a CMA and found out that no one in your area has granite counter tops.. does that mean you are living in a community that does not like granite? What is that?

As Michelle perfectly noted below:
"You may not get 100% the cost of your upgrades in your final sale price, but your home will probably sell faster thereby saving you money in holding and carrying costs. Buyers don't want an allowance for upgrades and repairs. They are probably spending every penny they can muster to buy a home, especially with the new higher down-payment requirements. Buyers today want a house that is move in ready."

Exactly.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 9, 2011
When you put your home on the market, you are entering it in a beauty pagent. The best looking homes sell faster and for a higher price. You may not get 100% the cost of your upgrades in your final sale price, but your home will probably sell faster thereby saving you money in holding and carrying costs.

Buyers don't want an allowance for upgrades and repairs. They are probably spending every penny they can muster to buy a home, especially with the new higher down-payment requirements. Buyers today want a house that is move in ready.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Mar 6, 2011
Hi Snow, this all depends upon how long you plan on staying. You can put it on the market without these updates and offer a credit for them.. (get real estimates with a compnay that can do them when the new people call) and figure these in your sale price.

But for me.. I would like to see it done in advance, the property will shoe better and the new owner will not have to worry about getting it done when they move in.

So, Get it done!

John Sacktig
Broker / Manager
Orange Key Realty
Direct: 732-213-1409
JSacktig@orangekeyrealty.com
2 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 2, 2011
The use of Hardwoods and Granite will depend on the style of home and the neighborhood. I you plan to upgrade a home built in the 40's through the 60's, hardwoods would be a benefit where as granite probably wouldn't as it doesn't fit the era. The biggest key when remodeling is "Will this help sell this home?" Never plan on getting all of your cost back from the remodel at best you will recoup 85% and that will mainly come from kitchen and bathroom remodels.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 9, 2011
Hi Snow,

I agree with John, I would also like to see these things done if I were a buyer coming through your home. There's nothing like looking at brand new counter tops and walking on new hardwood flooring, it will definitely separate your home from all the others on the market or at least give you a leg up on the market.

The downside to that is, naturally people like what they like, if it's all brand new, but they don't like the color of the countertops or the stain of the wood it may be a deal killer. Which is something you can not change at that point.
I guess Snow, what I'm trying to say is, no matter what any one gives as advice, it's still your decision in the long run. Both have it's advantages, just make sure if you do the upgrades it all fits with decor of the rest of the house.

If you need help on listing your home don't hesitate in giving me a call at Robert Gaffney (cell) 570-228-9126 or e-mail me at rgaffney@crystalspringsbuilders.com

Good Luck

Mountain Resort Properties, Inc
48 Sugar Maple Lane
Hardyston, NJ 07419
Robert Gaffney - Sales Associate
O: 973-823-1293
F: 973-823-0088
C: 570-228-9126
E: rgaffney@crystalspringsbuilders.com
U: http://www.robertjgaffney.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 2, 2011
We have gotten tremendous sales results when the granite was put in the kichen and appliances updated. It is usually the first thing that we advise the seller to do. It is all about staging in this market, as there are so many other homes for sale. You need to stand out. Best of Luck!
Web Reference: http://www.cbbaker.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 9, 2011
In the current market buyers want move in ready homes and do not have cash after closing to do the upgrades.
even if they did, the first impression and appeal of your home compared to others on the market in your price range will make it show better and sell faster if it shows nicer than your competition.
So have your Realtor show you some of the competition in your price range to determine how your home will show compared to others out there. That will help you determine what you should do.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 9, 2011
You are better off offering a credit in Escrow for a flooring and Granite upgrade. This way the buyer can pic the color that suits their taste. make sure that it is a comperable and fair credit. This also lowers their tax base on the purchase price which should make them happy.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 9, 2011
Hi Snow,

It is all depends on your community comps.
To get Comparable Market Analysis from 2-3 Realtor to find out what price range selling price are, what features have on those sold homes.

Wish you all the best,
Web Reference: http://www.cometoga.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 9, 2011
This is where a professional needs to step in, and I mean a professional! Many Realtors don't feel comfortable telling a seller what improvements need to be made or even worse, if the Realtor is not intimately familiar with the neighborhood they cannot answer that question correctly.
If you are in a neighborhood with mostly laminate countertops and linoleum floors you most likely won’t recoup the costs associated, but if you are in a neighborhood where those types of upgrades are standard then it will be well worth the time and money to upgrade.
In the future, if it is your primary residence, make the improvements earlier so you can enjoy them too.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 9, 2011
There are some great answers below and have not had the time to read them all! With that said(my opinion) and also taking the advice of your Realtor is to sell the home without the updates. May be thinking out of the box here but not only will you get back approximmmately 80% of the cost BUT also the time it takes(spring market is NOW!) and the continued maintnance costs(taxes, upkeep, mortgage payments) will add up to an even smaller return, If you list the house to bring in Buyers looking to save some money with "sweat equity" you may be better served! Additionally your "taste" in Granite and Hardwood may not be the same as the potential Buyer! Best of Luck!!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 9, 2011
It would depend on a lot more factors. Such as how much equity is in the home, what are you competing with in the area. What price range is the home in, and what is the overall condition of the home.

Find a listing realtor who will show you a few comps in the area before spending the money.
If you need help finding one contact me through my website http://www.chooseahomenow.com.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 9, 2011
Most buyers in New Jersey want hardwood floors (especially the younger ones). In addition, hardwood floors do make a house "shine". In my opinion it is worth the investment, if not for the entire home at least the living and dining rooms. As for granite, it only pays to upgrade if the kitchen is fairly new and does not need updating. Investing in granite countertops when the rest of the kitchen is old and tired is a waste of money.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Mar 6, 2011
Hi Snow,
I would defer to your listing agent for the answer on this. All Real Estate markets are different,a good listing agent will know what the buyers have been looking for.
In California, all of my buyers like hardwood and updated kitchens.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 3, 2011
Every buyer has different taste. Some people will walk in and want to do their own spin to every home... I would say to hold off and list without the upgrades, but do ask your agent about the other compention to see what those homes have to offer compared to yours.. Your agent may be able to give you an idea of what will shin in the buyers eyes.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 3, 2011
I would recommend you look at your competition. Does everyone have granite countertops? Then, you might consider them. However, in general, I recommend to my sellers that if they cannot compete on the amenities level, that they reduce the price accordingly.
As far as hard wood floors go, that is going to be a huge expense. I would much rather a price reduction and a comment in the agent notes that the price has been reduced to allow the purchasers a credit of X number of dollars to put in h/w floors. Get an estimate for the work that is available so you know what the cost will be.
Web Reference: http://www.dianeglander.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 3, 2011
My belief is that you do not want to over price your home for the neighborhood. Usually remodeling a home will cost more than the sale price will be able to make up. Even a new kitchen will only bring 85% of the cost to do. Looking at that and the way the economy is I would suggest you lower the price to find more buyers
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 2, 2011
Ask a local realtor to perform a market analysis of your home (most realtors will do this for free). A good realtor will know what the buyers in your area are looking for.

Make sure all of the home's systems are up to code (septic, heating, electrical). If your home needs any repairs (roof, windows, driveway) now may be good time to fix them. Spring is right around the corner and you might want to spruce up the curb appeal of your home (you do not want to become a "drive by"). Most of the buyers I have dealt with would rather do cosmetic work than repair something that is broken.

Remember harwood floors and granite countertops are expensive items that you are leaving "behind" and there is no guarantee in real estate. Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 2, 2011
What is the competition offering and at what price? If you can answer the previous question, you may well be on your way to an answer.
Web Reference: http://www.golftobeach.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 2, 2011
It's a mixed bag out there and you do need to be careful to not over improve for the neighborhood. I personally found that my home sold very quickly (1-1/2 months with the average market time in that area being 9 months) with nice granite and hardwood floor upgrades. The home was located in a neighborhood where buyers would expect to have nicer upgrades in the homes and many didn't have it so it set my listing apart. The downside was that even though the home sold quickly for the highest price at the time there was really not a lot of return on the actual investment other than not having a holding cost for another 7.5 months. Hope this helps you.

Cheers,

Sandy Farmer
Realtor, GRI, CSSN
John Hall & Associates
homesales411.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 2, 2011
Hi Snow,

Many buyers would love to see hardwood floors and granite, but keep in mind that some may not. It really does come down to the total amount spent to do the upgrades versus the amount that you will get back when selling your home.

I would suggest having a real estate professional provide a market analysis on your home as it is. When they are at your house they should be able to give you other suggestions that will help to have your home show better and sell for the most possible.

Many times it happens that the simple, lower cost changes really provide a better return on investment.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

Shelby Rhodes
Century 21 Joe Tekula Realtors
Cell# 973-945-9494
shelby.rhodes@century21.com
Web Reference: http://www.shelbyrhodes.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 2, 2011
Hi Snow,

Many of today's buyers are looking for one of two things: Martha Stewart's house or what they perceive to be a "bargain." Whether or not to make improvements depends upon the return on your investment. One question to ask is "will the upgrades bring me more than the cost of the upgrades?" Another concern is how long it will take to sell in the current condition compared to other similar properties. An experienced real estate agent can help you determine these answers by provideing a thorough analysis of the market with you.

Please feel free to contact me for any help or to answer any questions for you. I am centrally located in Sussex County in Augusta.

Judy Golland, Broker of Record
EXIT Town and Country Realty
http://www.SussexCountyHomes.com
Judy@JudyGolland.com 973-670-5304

I wish you luck in the sale of your home.
Web Reference: http://www.JudyGolland.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 2, 2011
Hello Home Seller,

While it is true that most often Hardwood and Granite are preferred by most, I would recommend having a local REALTOR® preview the home. There are a couple of variables that would determine whether these upgrades would enhance your sales price enough to make it worth it.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 2, 2011
Hi Snow,)
My advice is to get a "Competitive Market Anylsis" (CMA) with and with out the upgrades
before you spend any money .

Call me anytime to set up an appointment . Raymond @Sussex County Real Estate .
Cell Phone 973-886-3654 or Office 973-827-8885 (Ext 316).
The CMA is complimentary!

Hope to hear from you soon.......

Thanks.

Raymond M
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 2, 2011
Hi Snow,
You should talk to a local realtor & find out what features competing homes in your neighborhood have in them before spending the money. If there are several homes on the market close by that are very upgraded with hardwood floors & upgraded kitchens & you feel your home would not show as well in the same price category then consider it. If you discover that most of the active , pending & sold homes did not have the upgrades but sold at a slightly lessor price then that is the way to go.You may be able to get by with some fresh paint, Spring cleaning, & staging & save yourself & the buyer money. The better the price the quicker it will sell.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 2, 2011
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