So you want to sell your home. You fix the leaking roof, deep clean your carpets and revamp the bedrooms with a lick of cream paint. Not only does your home look great, but the changes you’ve made will help your home sell quickly and for top dollar, right? Well, maybe. Making the right upgrades will help your home stand out from the crowd but there are other factors, little-known ones, that can affect your home sale.
1. Deadly, Invisible Gas
No joke. Radioactive radon gas is found all over the United States and the property market is rife with radon-soaked homes. No matter how your home is constructed, radon can seep into your home from the soil. Breathe enough of this invisible gas over the years and it can increase your risk of lung cancer. How many home buyers do you think are prepared to put their family at risk? Not to worry though; a professional test will show if there are deadly levels of radon at your home. Then, if there are, you can hire a contractor to seal off any cracks in the foundation, install an exhaust to expel excess radon and fit a radon mitigation system.
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Most of the evidence is anecdotal, but real estate agents report that a home with at least one resident smoker sells for 10 to 30 percent less than a comparable home with no evidence of smoking. It’s not just cigarette smoke either; mildew, cat urine and cooking odors will also hinder your sale. If in doubt, ask an outsider to put your home through the sniff test and hire a crack cleaning team to neutralize odors before you sell.
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3. Galvanized piping
Galvanized pipes were used extensively in homes built before 1970. They’re pretty good at carrying your water supply when they’re new, but after a few years the pipes corrode and get clogged up with sediment causing the water pressure to drop. Because galvanized pipes are no longer specified for residential use, your buyer’s home inspector likely will flag them at inspection. The worst case scenario? You’ll have to replace all the plumbing in your home before you close.
4. You Live in a Condo
There’s one major problem with condos — the FHA doesn’t like them. In fact, the FHA is so wary of condos it will only finance those that meet strict criteria. Some of these include:
- No more than one-half of the units in the building may be rented to tenants
- Fewer than 15 percent of home owners may be delinquent on their association fees
- The condo association must be squeaky clean, with no litigation against it and at least one years’ worth of cash reserves.
With the FHA funding over 50 percent of all loans, FHA approval makes a big difference in terms of your ability to sell your home. If your condo does not meet FHA approval, you can only sell to a buyer who qualifies for a conventional loan with stricter down payment, credit score and debt-to-income ratios.
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5. Street Name
Home buying is an emotional process, and nothing pushes buyers’ buttons like the name of your street. Grand-sounding suffixes like Boulevard, Avenue, Place and Way sell at an average of 36% higher than everyday street names like Alley or Street, according to property web portal Trulia.
Obviously, there’s not a lot you can do about your street’s name or the state of your condo association. When selling your home, focus on the things you can control and stay positive — there’s a buyer out there for every property in the majority of cases.
When you are ready to sell your house, anywhere in the nation, contact us at 1-800-805-8354. Let’s at least discuss your home value. It might be worth more than you think!