Small Potatoes

PotatoesBeing back on the track of showing a wide assortment of price ranges, styles, and ages of homes these past weeks, it has been once again confirmed how often times buyers look past intrinsic values in homes. Too many times they “fly over” a home that doesn’t have replacement windows yet the home is quality built and offers a great floor plan; not to mention nearly all the other mechanicals were recently updated. I really wish buyers would take the time to investigate the hard costs of replacing things that they find un-acceptable. Having helped buyers in the past with finding quality replacement windows as well as contractors that will install them, one finds that the costs are not that outrageous. Unless a window is super large or of a special design, the average cost of a good name-brand window averages around $250.00 – $275.00 per window including installation. Believe me, I can tell in an instant if a replacement window is of good and lasting quality, or a bargain basement one. Floor coverings are another point of annoyance. More and more I find people installing cheap laminate snap-together flooring over real wood floors. It then causes yet another problem with marketing the home due to often times the laminate showing signs of separation as well as excess wear on un-even edges.  Because buyers don’t know what’s under the laminate, they walk away from what they see. In my mind I see a quick tear out of the laminate and likely a long weekend of re-finishing the real wood floors.

One particular home that I have shown over and over again is one that for me would take likely $5,000 worth of time and materials to get it quickly marketable. There are quirky things that have been done to the home that every buyer who’s viewed it walks away due to their belief that it would cost far too much to make it feel like home. I’ve even mentally gone out of my way to prepare myself before showing it so that I can give every encouragement possible for improving the home’s future value. It still hasn’t worked. The home will likely sell $20,000+ under what it should have sold for due to the multiple buyers’ first impressions of the home. If I had that home listed, I would have encouraged the sellers to either do some of my recommended improvements or I would just walk away and wish them the best. Sellers sometimes take offense by what I say and I’m sorry for that, but I really do work for win-win situations with myself and sellers. On the flip side, buyers must start learning to get over fretting about the “small potatoes” and look at the entire pictures of value.