As a real estate broker working primarily in the mid-to-upper tier market, I’m seeing a trend emerge in the sale and purchase of these homes that I feel needs to be addressed.

In this Real Estate Market Tidbits three-part series, I’ll address the issue of buyers’ attitudes towards the cost of deferred maintenance of a house and the implication it has on the sellers’ ability to sell their home.

Put simply, more and more buyers in the mid- to upper-tier market are reluctant to pay top dollar for a home that requires visible maintenance. If it needs work, they’re not willing to pay for it. And often, even the need to replace the shingles is enough to put buyers off and sees them moving on in their house search.

And why wouldn’t they?

I’m noticing that many buyers don’t have the time to put into the changes required to make a home perfect. They often don’t know how much the renovations will cost, how long they’ll take, and how much effort might be required of them to get those changes made. Add the fact that they have the money, or financing, to pay for a “perfect” home and it’s easy to see why they’ll bypass homes that are priced too high for what’s required of them.

That’s why I encourage my clients to have me do an assessment of their home before they’re ready to put it on the market. I’m a professional and can look at all the bits and pieces objectively and point out what needs to be done to take any objections potential buyers may have out of the equation.

If your real estate agent or broker isn’t doing this, in my opinion it’s time to ask them to offer this assistance to you. If they are: take their advice! They know what’s hot and what sells. At the very least, bring in an experienced interior designer with knowledge of home staging to tell you what you need and what resources to source to get the biggest bang for your buck.

In the next part of this series I’ll be discussing exactly what practices you can put into play to do just that.

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