How to Sell a House in Poor Condition?

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One of the most common myths in the real estate world is that poor-condition houses don’t sell. 

Sure, it may not be the first thing that comes to mind when someone considers buying a new property, but many people purchase poorly maintained houses. Ultimately, this means that you can sell such a house, and if you do it right, you might even sell it for more money than you expected. 

Here, we’ll discuss how to do that and sell a house, even if it’s in the worst state possible. So now, instead of heading to Google to frantically search things like “how to sell my house fast in Kansas City” or “how to sell my poor-condition house,” all you have to do is read this blog post.

Let’s begin!

What Qualifies as a “Poor Condition” House? 

In real estate terminology, poor-condition houses are either those that require hefty repairs for the property to become habitable or those with visible damages. An inhabitable house is one with various safety concerns, such as:

  • Molds in living areas, 
  • Severely damaged foundations, 
  • Damaged and leaking roofs, 
  • Houses containing unsafe building materials like lead paints 
  • Rodent or pest infestation, 
  • Faulty electric wiring, 
  • Other issues that pose a direct threat to the lives of those living in it.

A house that requires major repairs is also a house in poor condition. These issues can include mold in a part of the house that’s not made for living in (like basements), termites, plumbing issues, and problematic (or nonfunctioning) heating and cooling systems. 

Others may be structurally fine but still in need of updating.

Potential Buyers for Poor Condition Houses

Before trying to sell, you need to know who you can sell your property to. Potential buyers for houses in poor condition include:

  • Landlords — They are always on the lookout to buy houses that need some renovation. That’s because landlords are willing to invest a couple thousand dollars in renovation. Then, they rent the property out at higher prices. If your house is in a desirable location, landlords will likely bid on it regardless of its condition. 
  • Property Flippers — These are people with lots of on-hand money to spend. Their main aim is to make a quick profit. So they buy properties in poor condition for cheap, renovate them, and sell them for a higher price. 
  • Property Developers and Investors —  Property developers and flippers are almost the same. They will invest in your house, increase its value, and sell it for more than what it costs them to make a profit. However, property developers mainly aim to make the highest possible profit. So they try to bargain down the price using tactics like quick cash payment for your property with no renovation work from your end.
  • Homeowners — As unlikely as it may seem, sometimes, people with low budgets are looking for a house at a bargain. Usually, these are people who no longer want to keep paying monthly rent to their landlords and instead want to own a property of their own. 

How to Sell a House in Poor Condition?  

Generally, there are four ways to sell a poor-condition house. 

  1. Sell As-Is

If you have no cash or time to spare on the renovation, you can sell the house as it is. However, in this case, you may only have investors, cash-home buyers, and househackers as your buyers. That means you’ll be selling your house for way less than it’s worth.

On the upside, this method typically takes between 1 and 7 days. If you’re looking to sell as-is, list your house on the multiple listing service (MLS) or try the FSBO way. 

  1. Sell After Minor Repairs

A few minor upgrades will only cost you $100-$1000 but can help increase the selling value. Consider painting the house interior, changing the nonfunctional or rusty faucets, and investing in cosmetic fixes to brighten up the look of your house.

Also, with minor repairs, many labor costs can be eliminated if you do them yourself. After the repairs, you can list the property with a realtor, MLS, or FSBO.

  1. Sell After Moderate Upgrades and Repairs

If you have a better budget (around $5000), then investing in moderate upgrades and repairs will pay off nicely. Moderate repairs include painting the kitchen cabinets, replacing the bathroom vanity, upgrading the kitchen appliances to stainless steel, replacing the front door, etc. 

Anything that can help improve the overall look of the house, and make it more livable helps increase the value of the house. Plus, it makes the house more sellable, too!

  1. Sell After Cost-Intensive Upgrades  

Lastly, if you have a spare budget of $10,000 to $20,000 to invest in your property, consider cost-intensive upgrades like replacing the kitchen cabinets, upgrading the countertops to Quartz or Solid Stone, and fixing the roof if damaged. 

These upgrades will drastically improve the value of your property, and you’ll have no issues selling it on the MLS. Overall, try investing in improving the functionality and outlook of your property as much as possible.