The Pros and Cons of Renovating Before You Sell

Every seller wants to get the most for their home. Making a good first impression and offering a high quality home that can compete with other similar properties on the market is absolutely crucial.

Sometimes, renovating your home might be the way to bring your home up to scratch for the best result. Here are the pros and cons of this strategy so you can determine whether it’s the right approach for you.

The pros

Removes buyer objections

When a prospective buyer views a home, it’s natural that they will look for reasons not to buy. This may include small issues that in reality are fairly low-cost to rectify, but a purchaser may see them as a mark against the home and even as a sign that the property will be costly and high maintenance. Removing these objections through small improvements and renovations allows your home to shine from the start.

Common objections include:

  • Cracks in the wall
  • Outdated decor
  • Broken or damaged doors, windows, walls and fixtures
  • Overgrown gardens

Make a list of what you could quickly and easily fix for a relatively low cost – fixing these problem areas will ensure they don’t become a hindrance at open homes.

Increase the value of your home

There’s a reason many property investors buy rundown homes to renovate and “flip” – because they can sell them quickly and make a substantial profit. Some homes, particularly those that haven’t been renovated or updated in many years, are perfect for a value-adding renovation.

This can include extending or structurally changing your property, a ‘cosmetic’ makeover for tired homes or a mixture of the two. Adding amenity, extra rooms, or bringing up the standard can see buyers willing to pay substantially more for your property, giving you a higher return on investment.

Makes your home a competitor

More eyes on a home usually means a quicker sale at the price point you want. Making your home the best presented out of those on the market will ensure that you are at the top of the list to be looked at. Improvements can not only be listed as a positive in your home’s marketing description, but will also make your professional listings photographs pop even more.

It will also help tap into the emotion of the buyer, which will make them more inclined to choose to make an offer on your home than another. In a market where there are many similar homes available for buyers, having a point of difference is crucial.

Re-ignite a stale listing

If you have had your home listed for a lengthy period of time, then you should be looking for techniques to re-ignite the sale. While there are many reasons for a home failing to sell, and you should speak to your agent about why your home hasn’t attracted the necessary interest, a renovation can be a potential game changer.

The cons

Time consuming

For home sellers looking to get as quick a sale as possible, taking the time to renovate your property might not be an option. While some quick cosmetic fix ups can take as little as a few days, for anything more substantial you can be looking at a period of weeks or even months. During this time, the local sales market may change – for the better or worse.

Plan ahead to ensure you have the option to renovate or make modest improvements, stick to careful timelines and seek out expert advice earlier rather than later.

Can be costly

Not all renovations will be expensive, but for sellers on a budget it may require upfront cash that you don’t have available. For those struggling to come up with the funds to renovate or undertake improvements, simply presenting the home as best possible through DIY and some elbow grease can make a big difference.

Ensure you know exactly what you are prepared to spend ahead of time and be prepared to only improve on the areas that most desperately need it.

No guarantee you’ll get the money back

While there are certainly benefits for bringing your home up to scratch, there’s no certainty that what you spend on your property now will pay dividends on sale day. Some buyers actively looking for renovator’s delights, while others are savvy about the cost of renovations and won’t pay above and beyond.

Overcapitalising, or spending more on the home than you can get back on sale, is all too common for novice renovators. In some instances, you may solely get back what you put in, which may be a waste of time and effort.

To ensure you make the best choice, take advice from your real estate agent and look to see the presentation of other local homes. An agent should be able to guide you with what improvements you should or shouldn’t make for the best sales result in your circumstances.

You may also like