When it comes time to sell your home, you need to be aware of factors that can negatively affect your home’s desirability, and consequently, the selling price you can fetch. While you can take action to improve many of these, unfortunately, there are things – including some truly bizarre ones – that you simply have little or no control over.
Here’s a look at a few of these irreversible factors:
- Bad neighbors
Diligent homebuyers will not only look closely at a home for sale but the neighborhood, as well. No matter how meticulously you keep your property, if your neighbor’s is littered with trash, or has an unkempt yard or noisy dogs, you’ll likely find it harder to sell your property at a high price. Living next to a hoarder can also turn off buyers, as hoarding can pose fire and pest hazards in the neighborhood. Likewise, homes in an area where there are many registered sex offenders may lose a good chunk of their value.
- Various stigmas
A stigmatized house can be one with a history of suicide, murder, or deaths from criminal activities like drug dealing or child neglect. Lesser criminal activities, such as kidnapping, prostitution, and domestic violence, may also stigmatize a house and cause its value to drop. Supernatural stigma, particularly talks or suspicion of ghosts and hauntings, can also drive away buyers and diminish the home’s value.
California laws require that home sellers disclose deaths that took place in the property in the last three years, but not those prior to that. Hauntings also don’t have to be disclosed. However, if the buyer or their agent asks about stigmatizing events or factors, it’s best to be honest about them, as lying or misrepresenting may lead to accusations of fraud later on.
- “Zombie” homes
Not to be confused with haunted homes, zombie homes are empty or abandoned properties that have typically been foreclosed. They can be an eyesore when they’ve fallen into disrepair and neglect, and when you live next to one, this can affect the desirability and value of your property.
In addition, too many foreclosed properties in your neighborhood can also reduce your home’s value. When appraisers and Realtors valuate a property, they typically do a comparative market analysis, which takes the sale prices of nearby homes into account. As foreclosed homes generally sell for less than market value, too many “zombie” homes in your neighborhood can drag your home’s value down.
Buyers will also be warier about buying in a neighborhood with too many foreclosed properties, and will typically try to offset their risk by asking for a discount.
A 2010 study found that billboards in your neighborhood can bring your home’s value down, particularly if they’re located within 500 feet of your property. A billboard may raise the value of the home where it’s erected as it can mean added revenue, but not the value of neighboring properties. The most likely reason is aesthetics – billboards can mar views and be an eyesore, especially in a residential neighborhood.
If you need help in selling your home in La Cañada Flintridge, Glendale, and nearby communities, I can help you market your property to the right buyers. Call me, Kathy Seuylemezian, at 818.949.5205 or leave me a message at kathy(at)imuragent(dotted)com.