You Might Be Lowering the Value Of Your Property Without Even Realizing It. Here Are 8 Ways That Homeowners Unknowingly Lower the Value of Their House

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Sometimes homeowners unknowingly lower the value of their home. No homeowner would intentionally lower the value of their home, as every homeowner wants their home to shine when it comes to appraisal time, should they ever decide, or have to sell their house. Here are some ways that you might be de-valuing your house without even realizing it.

1. Location, location, location. 
First things first, make sure you buy a home that is in a great area. That is, you never want to buy a home that is right next the highway, an airport, or far away from the city, or on a college campus. Most buyers don’t want to go to sleep at night listening to cars pass them by on the highway, or listen to airplanes taking off at every hour of the day and night. And certainly, no homeowner is going to want to live right next to a college campus. Unless you sell to a college student, which is never going to happen, since college students can’t afford to buy a house; and even if they could, no one in their right mind is going to buy a house when they are between 18-21 years old. 

2. Good intentions, bad outcome
If you are going to do renovations or remodeling to your home, make sure that they are done properly, and in an aesthetically pleasing way. Don’t do renovations by yourself, as you could mess them up. If you do, your home definitely will be de-valued.

Poor renovations can actually lower the value further down than if you hadn’t done any work to it at all. Always be sure that any renovations are adding to your home, not taking away. Buyers want homes that are move-in ready. They don’t want to have to un-do the work that you did to the house.

3. Adding your personal style

Always use neutral paint choices when it comes to both the interior and exterior of the home. No homeowner wants to purchase a home with purple walls, or a lime green exterior. Firstly, because it’s unattractive, and will distract them from paying attention to the actual details of the house. But also, they’ll be thinking about how much its going to cost them to re-paint. If you plan to sell your home in the next few years, but want to do a new paint job on your house, choose neutral colors. You want the buyer to feel like it could be “their” home.

This is why you want them to see a blank canvas when they walk in; this way, they can imagine all of their belongings there. If you paint your walls bold colors, you’re selling yourself short. Also, if you’ve taken the small guest bedroom and converted it into an office by adding built-in shelves, and a built-in desk, you’re creating a problem for a buyer that might have wanted to use that room as a nursery. Be sure to turn any rooms you’ve converted, back into their original state.

4. Bad curb appeal
Buyers decide based on the outside of the home, whether they’re going to even walk in it or not. If the outside of the home is dated, needs massive repairs, or is just in overall horrible shape, they aren’t going to come see it. Even if they do, this is likely to turn them away. Curb appeal can be expensive, and no one wants to fool with it. If your home is lacking on the outside, people will also assume you didn’t take care of the inside, and will expect that there are internal issues with the home. Make sure that you make the outside look nice. This can’t be stressed enough. You don’t have to spend a million dollars, but put some sort of effort in. It will pay off in the long run.

5. Pet damage
Make sure that there is no pet damage in the house. This includes carpets, scratched floors, and any other possibilities that pets might have damaged. Also, many people have pet allergies. Try to not let the homeowner know you have a pet. The pet actually should never be there anyway when a buyer is viewing the home. It is a good idea to find a place for your pets to stay until the home is sold. You don’t want someone who is allergic to cats to walk into your home and sneeze the whole time.

6. Shoddy neighbhorhood
A bad neighborhood unfortunately isn’t something you can really control, if you happen to own a house in one. Unfortunately, most homebuyers don’t want to live in a dangerous, crime-ridden neighborhood. The best thing (and actually the only thing) you can do to avoid this, is to not purchase a home in a bad neighborhood.

7. Bad rep
Another thing you can’t quite control. Any deaths, rumors, or well-known crime investigation areas will de-value the home. No one wants to live in a house that someone died in. Also it is illegal for a homeowner to not disclose this information to a buyer.


2 Responses

  1. John

    Great article. #2 is very important. If you are about to do renovations, and you know you are selling your home soon, you MUST be sure to use a generic color scheme otherwise, you might as well have not done anything in the first place. If you’re selling your home, and you already have made those renovations with the not-so-great design choices, you need to come to terms with the fact that it doesn’t look good, and lower your price. Please don’t stand firm on the “I just renovated it, so I can’t go down,” standpoint. It isn’t easy to be told that the work you spent a lot of money on isn’t a popular look, but you must face the music! Just my two cents.

  2. Laura King

    Hi John,

    Yes, it is very surprising how many homeowners do not use neutral colors when painting a home. Even if it is a light shade of blue, yellow, green, or red, it still makes a difference. Sellers should stick to tans, beiges, and light grays (if a color must be used).

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