By Joseph Callaway
What is an “impaired seller”? Your house faces, backs, or sides to a busy street. Your house is near an airport with planes taking off and landing right over your backyard. Your house is old and original with Formica countertops and shag carpet. Your pool is empty and the plaster is cracked. You need a new roof. The yard is a jungle or the house is a mess. These are all impairments. In a normal market, impairments translate to selling for less.
Fronting a busy street can be as much as a 20% discount. A new roof can cost $20,000 to $30,000. Power lines can be a 10% to 20% hit depending on proximity. If your house suffers these challenges, you are an impaired seller.
Thinking about selling but daunted by the prospect of getting the house ready? You are impaired and, if you don’t have the time or money to fix it up, you will have to sell for less.
Then along comes a once in a lifetime market. A market with five to 10 times the demand against a very low supply. That is the market we are in and have been in for more than a year and, depending on how you measure it, maybe three years.
Suddenly impairments matter less and, in many cases, not at all. This is the current opportunity for the impaired seller.
If you are a buyer and you say, “But this house is on a busy street,” and there are five other buyers putting in offers, that seller is not going to care about your noise sensitivity.
If you look at a house that is tired and unprepared and you expect a carpet allowance, but several of the other seller offers plan to strip the flooring out when they remodel, your concerns are going to fall on deaf ears.
Does this mean you shouldn’t get your home ready to go on the market? That is up to you, but it currently matters less.
Then there is the concept of “seller dollars” and “buyer dollars.” When you spend money on your home prior to selling it, those are seller dollars, and you will want these dollars whether you spend seller dollars or not. Buyer dollars on the other hand are all about the buyers’ plans and dreams. Like Monopoly money, you don’t care if you are the seller. Plan to take out the wall or put in a new kitchen? Right on. Spend away.
That is the opportunity in this once in a lifetime sellers’ market. In this market you can sell quickly, limit showings, negotiate multiple offers, close quickly, get your money, and if you need time to move, stay in the house for 30, 60, 90 days or more.
Just be sure you select an agent with multiple offer experience. Even a good thing can be messed up in inexperienced hands. When will this market and this opportunity for impaired sellers go away? We do not know. People have been predicting the end for months and yet we continue to have too many buyers for too few homes.
Joseph Callaway is the owner of Those Callaways and Callaway Realty. He branded 85254 as “The magic zip code” and has sold more than 1,000 homes in 85254. His cell is 602-796-5751.