When you’re searching for a home, the low price of a fixer-upper may seem appealing, but buying a home that’s in dire need of some TLC just adds on to your long list of things to do – not to mention that it’ll take longer until you can finally relax and settle in.
If you’ve been inspired by all those home improvement shows and think you’re up to the challenge of taking on a fixer-upper, buyer beware. It may not be worth it in the end.
All Work and No Play (Makes Jack a Dull DIY-er)
Changing the paint and flooring can seem like a breeze, but it’ll take a lot of long days, nights and weekends to complete – and those things are only the beginning. Choosing to design a brand-new kitchen starts with picking new cabinets and countertops, then installing those cabinets and countertops. Then the appliances, light fixtures, hardware, backsplash, furniture, decorations and more. Once the several-weeks process of a kitchen remodel is finally complete, it’s time to start on the bathrooms, then the bedrooms, then the living room. And after spending all evening and night working, you still have to go to work the next day!
A Penny Saved is a Penny Spent on Renovations
The low cost of a fixer-upper is eye-catching when compared to a home that’s move-in-ready. However, renovations can cost more than you’d spend buying a move-in-ready home. If some (or all) rooms need an entire overhaul, you’ll likely spend more $$$ in renovations than you saved by buying a fixer-upper. Even a lot of small fixes start to add up over time. If your reason for choosing a fixer-upper is to save money, buying a home that needs several updates and renovations may not be for you in the long run.
Down to the Bones
A lot of the time, a fixer-upper goes beyond cosmetic updates. (You may have seen the dreaded phone calls on those home improvement shows alerting the buyers of problems they’ve discovered that’ll take a chunk out of their renovation budget.) Foundation issues, electrical issues, termites and mold are just a few of the common problems that stay hidden until discovered on fixer-uppers, and they’re all issues that can’t be put off until a later time.
Expect the Unexpected
Setbacks are bound to happen. Your new refrigerator may not have left the warehouse when it was supposed to arrive by now. The manufacturer made a mistake on the order of your dream countertops and shipped the wrong ones. Your new wood floors got scratched when you were bringing your new oven in, or they might clash with the color you already painted the whole house with. Things can go wrong, which may cost you time and money that you don’t want to (or can’t) spare.
You might discover that your patience and motivation are shorter than your to-do list. Your emotional and physical energy may start to dwindle as time goes on and pitfalls or delays start to build. The (traditional) selling and buying process is already draining as it is – not to mention packing and unpacking – so you may burn out on fixing up your fixer-upper sooner than you think.
When all is said and done, a fixer-upper may cost you more than you think you’d save. Time and money start to add up when you could have been settled into a move-in ready home months before your fixer-upper is finally complete.
The good news is that if you still want your home to have new updates or upgrades, we’ve got your back! You don’t have to coordinate several projects or do some back-breaking work. With Offerpad My Way, we make your home your own before you move in, so all you have to do is unpack and start livin’.
If you want to avoid making any updates or changes at all to the home you’re buying, you might want to consider a brand-new build. Offerpad has partnerships with some of the top builders in the country. Learn more here.
Whether your dream home is a fixer-upper, move-in ready or brand new, we can help you sell your current home before you buy. Getting a home loan through Offerpad Home Loans, too, could save thousands – maybe enough to fix some things up when you move in. 😉