Is it worth it to borrow and put $20,000 into fixing up our house if we probably will sell it in summer 2009?

Asked by Nancy, Sun Mar 16, 2008

Or should we sell as a fixer-upper? Brick bungalow in North Park double lot, needs foundation work & new bathrooms.

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Ann Boyle’s answer
Ann Boyle, Agent, Evanston, IL
Mon Mar 17, 2008
Mike, loved your story about the kitchen and car!

I would look into doing the foundation work and the bathrooms. Most buyers balk if there are structural issues, with a foundation being a major concern. Re: bathrooms, I would have your agent come in and give you counsel on what he/she is seeing in homes these days. Just keep it neutral for the next buyer. You don't have to spend alot, but for the bathrooms, they do need to be nice and of a cohesive design and color.

Without knowing the extent of what needs to be done, if you are finding it unaffordable for yourselves to do, keep the quotes from the contractors you have had in, so that these numbers can help price the house when you go to sell it, or can be used for negotiation purposes during the inspection contingency.

Good Luck!
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Keith Sorem, Agent, Glendale, CA
Sun Mar 16, 2008
Consult with a Realtor, look at your potential competition.
You need to spend wisely. Your goal is to
#1 sell
#2 sell at the most net profit

So a Realtor can help you identify your priorities. it is too hard from this distance to give you the advice you need. It is a good thing for you to consider and I appreciate your wisdom in asking this question. Thousands of dollars could be on the line....
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Mike Kelly A…, Agent, Santa Rosa, CA
Sun Mar 16, 2008
Nancy, folks have a tendency to "horriblize" situations such as "foundation work" way beyond the actual cost of repair! Plus it literally shakes their "foundation" in the subject property (sorry for the pun!). Unless you have some very strong bids for the work to be done, many buyers are going to still balk as working on foundations can have many hidden costs. Get the work DONE!! Do it with all neccessary permits and have it cleared by your local municipality or authorities that be.
I had a client redo his kitchen completely before putting it on the market. He'd lived their for 20 years and his wife nearly divorced him over it!! Here she cooked every day with some funky electric range with orange counter-tops, dark, walnut cabinets, fake brick backsplash, and here comes hubby putting in stainless steel appliances, granite counter-tops, custom flooring, backsplash, viking range, etc!! JUST TO SELL IT! This all had a happy ending. We sold it over asking price at a price they BOTH couldn't belive and he ended up delivering to her a brand new shinny BMW roadster as she walked out of their favorite restaurant!! Yes, pay-back is good!
0 votes
Kenneth Verb…, Agent, PRINCETON, NJ
Sun Mar 16, 2008
depends upon what repairs you are planning. Buyers typically will expect to spend far more than repairs would actually cost and so will either reduce offers based on this or look to negotiate after inspections. Depending upon your municipality some repairs may be required in order to transfer ownership.
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