I have a house with electric heat and need to sell, do I replace the heating b4 listing or wait for an offer?

Asked by Seller1, Simsbury, CT Sat May 5, 2012

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Liza Nolan, Agent, Granby, CT
Sun May 6, 2012
With oil priced at over $4.00 a gallon, electric can actually be a cheaper alernative for many buyers! Whereas this may have turned away some individuals in the past, I no longer see this as a negative, and often re-educate my buyers on this fact.

Liza Nolan
Prudential Connecticut Realty
9R Hartford Avenue
Granby, CT 06035
cell: 203-623-6242
email: lizanolan@prudentialct.com
1 vote
Finally someone else has done the math to find it costs about the same or less than oil and could be easily converted to solar power. (house faces southwest
Flag Sun May 6, 2012
Lori Boyko,…, , Simsbury, CT
Sat May 5, 2012
I grew up in a house with electric heat and found that it did have several advantages over other heat sources. In my case, we had radiant heat, so there were no radiators or baseboard heaters to interfere with furniture placement. Additionally, a home with electric heat pays an overall lower rate to CL&P for their usage than a home with another heat fuel. Sometimes a buyer's concern with a particular type of heat comes from lack of information. Buyer preferences also often stem from familiarity. Large portions of the country-often in the south-heat with electricity. So, for people moving in from out of the area and with proper complete knowledge, some buyers will decide that electric heat is just fine with them.

My overall philosophy when counseling sellers about making renovations to their home for the express purpose of selling is to only make those changes or upgrades that will sell your house for a high enough price that the increase in value MORE than covers the cost of the upgrade. More often than not, a change will increase the value of the home but not by as much as you put into that change. If you spend $5000.00 changing something for the sale, but only sell the house for $3000.00 more, the change was not worthwhile.

I would hold off on replacing the heating system (unless it is so old that it would need to be replaced regardless of fuel type to function properly). As other agents have said, there are other options to overcoming a buyer's potential objection to electric than replacing the system up front.

Good luck with your sale and let us know if you have any other questions!
1 vote
Ron Krauch, Agent, Crestwood, IL
Mon Mar 30, 2015
My question from a marketing point of view is what is the expectation in the market? A thorough market analysis will show what the prevailing heat source would be. If it's electric and yours is functioning well, then I would recommend leaving it.

Ron Krauch
Managing Broker
Emerald Estates Realty, Inc.
Palos Heights, IL 60463
0 votes
ana, Home Owner, Guilford, CT
Mon Mar 30, 2015
I purchased a home a year and half ago that has electric heat. My previous home had oil heat. I was nervous about buying a home with electric heat but now i love it. It cost less to heat that my previous oil heat home. We do supplement the heat with a wood pellet stove that provides most of the heat but even with the cost of wood pellets we are spending less money than with oil heat.
0 votes
Carol Lin, Agent, Cupertino, CA
Sat Feb 28, 2015
Hi there, If you can change the heating system to gas heat, it should be better for the sale. Gas heating is cheaper than electric heating. You should replace it before listing the home.
0 votes
Caleb Hart, Renter, Orem, UT
Thu Feb 19, 2015
Do you want to replace the heating unit? There are a couple of things you can do when you need to replace your heater. There are oil or gas furnaces, as well as wood and coal burning. We had a coal burning furnace growing up and it always kept the house warm. http://www.toddcoinc.com/services/heating-air/
0 votes
Natdom4ever, Home Buyer, Simsbury, CT
Thu Dec 18, 2014
I had the same question but I would never buy another house with electric heat. My husband and I were in a hurry cause we were in a one bedroom apartment with a toddler and we had a baby on the way. We have owned our home for two years now and the heat is the main reason we are moving. We have been looking at homes and if it has baseboard (electric) heat we forget about it. It's not worth almost 700 a month in the winter.
0 votes
Tim Johnson, Home Buyer, Provo, UT
Wed Jul 16, 2014
I would definitely keep with your electric heat. It really is a very cost effective option a lot of people prefer. Post it and I bet you'll be surprised to see the positive responses to electric heat. http://www.feldmanfloorheat.com
0 votes
kimberly mun…, Agent, Avon, CT
Thu Jul 10, 2014
Here's some useful information for today's sellers: I was discussing this with a local appraiser the other day. They use to make negative adjustments for electric heat when comparable homes have oil. However, now that the price of oil has been, is, and will continue to be so high, they are no longer making that adjustment. A home with electric heat now appeals to the market the same as the same home with oil.
0 votes
Matt Lloyd, Agent, Simsbury, CT
Sat May 5, 2012
That's a great question... electric heat can be a turn off to buyers. I have a few question to ask about your house which would help answer your question. What is the best number to reach you? Or you can call my cell at 860-250-8284 -Matt
0 votes
Jessica Bega…, Agent, Avon, CT
Sat May 5, 2012
It depends - is your home pretty energy efficient? If it is, then electric heat wouldn't be too expensive. You would know how much it costs. What is the cost to replace and what would you replace it with? If gas, I would say yes. If oil, I would say no.

In my opinion, I think you'll have an easier time selling it if you don't have electric heat. But you have to weigh the costs and what you're replacing it with.
0 votes
David Brooke, Agent, Simsbury, CT
Sat May 5, 2012
Take the option of replacing the electric system as a back-end option, rather than a front-end one. Your Buyers may enjoy the consistency of electric heat. If Buyers feel very strongly as to the removal of it, even a credit may suffice or let them handle things entirely. Good question, though!

David Brooke
Engel & Voelkers West Hartford
Licensed Real Estate Agent & Appraiser
103 Memoral Road, West Hartford CT
0 votes
Kathleen Shi…, Agent, Simsbury, CT
Sat May 5, 2012
Hi Simsbury Seller,

Based on my experience with Simsbury buyers, most are going to frown upon having electric heat. I would advise pricing the home well compared to your competition in town that doesn't have electric for heat. If buyers find enough value in the house and is priced appropriately they will probably decide to either live with it or change it once they move in. Its best to get the house on now and not to miss this great spring market we are currently in! Kathleen Shippee, Coldwell Banker
0 votes
Amanda Albert, Agent, Woodbridge, CT
Sat May 5, 2012
It depends. Do you have straight electric or do you have an energy efficient heat pump?

You can always offer up a credit at closing or offer something after the buyers inspections.
0 votes
Tom Lynch, Agent, Great Barrington, MA
Sat May 5, 2012
Why would you replace the electric heat? There are many buyers who like electric heat. If a potential buyer likes your house, but does not want electric heat, they can explore options.

Good luck.

Tom Lynch
Associate Broker, Massachusetts, New York, and Connecticut
Berkshire Property Agents
12 Railroad Street
Great Barrington, Massachusetts 01230
0 votes
whoever thought a house doesnt need any source of gas heating is stupid!
my mom lives deep in backcountry in Tahoe and her house gets snowed in all season.And stupidly enough,her house has nothing but electric heating. so when snowed in and powers out, house gets freezing cold. Always no matter what have another source of heat besides a plug. Never know when your electricity will go out!
Flag Thu Jun 15, 2017
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