Discover What You Really Need to Know to Receive Maximum Value from a Fire-Damaged Home …
Do you own a house that has been damaged by fire?
If so, you are definitely not alone – the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) says there were a total of 499,000 structure fires in 2018 (2019 statistics are not yet available) and of those structure fires, 73 percent, or 363,000, were in “home structures,” which includes one and two-family houses, apartments and manufactured homes.
Unfortunately despite the frequent occurrence of house fires, having one still carries a significant stigma in the marketplace – so much so that selling a fire-damaged house can be very, very difficult.
In fact, most buyers today won’t even consider purchasing a fire-damaged house.
But don’t worry, there are still options available to owners of fire-damaged houses and we are going to discuss them in this article. So let’s get started …
Should You Sell Your Fire-Damaged House
“As Is” or Repair It?
The first decision you will have to make when it comes to selling your fire-damaged house is do you want to sell it in its current condition or do you want to take the time to repair the fire damage before you sell?
Of course, the main factor in this decision is most often how much damage was caused by the fire.
According to Homevestors.com, the average home fire causes over $18,000 worth of damage – an amount which immediately makes it hard to sell the home.
The problem is that figure is often for smaller house fires. Larger fires can cause extensive damage and lead to even higher repair bills.
There are many reasons for high repair costs, including:
- Prolonged exposure to soot can lead to respiratory problems for repair workers so you’ll need to hire workers with proper equipment and training
- Smoke damage can stain walls and ceilings and also impact other areas of the house including the HVAC system, the attic and roof and more
- There can also be water damage as well as mold removal costs to consider
All of this adds up quickly, which is why larger fires can result in repair costs of $50,000, $100,000 and more.
House Repair Experts Say That One of the Biggest Problems Resulting from a House Fire of Any Size is Smoke Damage
Smoke can radiate from the fire site throughout an entire house. It can get into ductwork, into sheetrock and into just about everything else as well.
The end result is while fire and water damage can be seen and taken care of … getting rid of the smoke smell in a fire-damaged house often requires gutting the home.
For this reason, home owners considering repairing a fire-damaged house must keep in mind the possible smoke damage. It’s easy to just go by what you see (the fire and water damage) and overlook smoke damage. This mistake causes many home owners to wildly overestimate the value of fire-damaged house and underestimate the total cost – and the length – of the repairs that are needed.
This is also something to keep in mind when dealing with an insurance company about getting a settlement for your fire-damaged home. Remember, insurance companies are businesses whose major interest is their own bottom line.
Don’t just trust what they say – study your policy carefully and be sure to keep track of all developments throughout the typically long fire settlement process so that nothing important gets past you (such as the cost of repairing smoke damage).
Those high costs that we discussed – along with the frustration that often comes with dealing with insurance companies – are why most owners of fire damaged houses opt to sell their house “as is” soon after a fire.
But Who Will Buy Your Fire-Damaged House As Is?
Now you may be wondering – who would want to buy my damaged, unlivable house?
The good news is there are investors who specialize in buying fire-damaged houses. These investors have teams that allow them to repair the houses faster and at a lower cost that what you, the home owner, could.
For example, WeBuyFireDamagedHouses.com has established a strong reputation in the marketplace for buying fire-damaged houses for a good price – and saving home owners from the stress and financial cost of trying to get the repairs done themselves.
By selling your house to a company like WeBuyFireDamagedHouses.com you could then use your insurance settlement to get a new house!
However, if you do decide to repair your house and then sell it, here are some …
Additional Tips to Maximize the Sell Price
of Your Fire-Damaged Home:
When it comes to selling a house today there are a number of mistakes sellers are making. One of the biggest is not staging their home properly.
It is no secret that a well maintained, clean and appealing home has a far better chance of selling, at a higher price and more quickly than a home that could use some work and attention. Luckily, there are a number of simple, inexpensive things you can do to make your home look irresistible to buyers.
Outside Your Home
- Tidy Up
- Trim the Shrubbery
- Plant Flowers
- Landscape/Mow the Lawn
- Maintain the Shutters
- Touch-up Paint
- Be Sure Your House Numbers are Visible
- Make the Front Entrance Beautiful
- Clean the Exterior
Inside Your Home
- Decorate – but not to extensively, go for an elegant but understated look so that potential buyers can easily see themselves in the home
- Create Space – lots of space is good and can make your house seem bigger. You should especially look to create lots of surface space
Another big mistake sellers often make is skimping on listing photos.
You have to remember that today many buyers are looking for homes online and that really increases the importance of having good photos and a lot of them.
Good photos are crisp and clear and should be taken during the day when there is plenty of natural light available. The photos should also showcase your home’s best assets. One way to do this is to use a wide-angle lens if possible.
A third mistake sellers often make is setting an unrealistic price. Overpriced homes simply do not sell.
On the other hand, price your house too low and you risk leaving money on the table. This is where mistake #4 comes in – mistake #4 is not hiring a real estate agent.
A good agent can conduct a thorough market analysis that will help identify the ideal asking price for your home. More benefits of hiring an agent include:
- They take the high emotion out of the process by interacting directly with potential buyers, so you don’t have to
- They eliminate tire kickers who only want to look at your property but have no intention of putting in an offer
- They use their experience and negotiation skills to help you receive the best possible offer
- They handle any issues that crop up during the sales process
- They take care of all the paperwork and ensure the sales process goes as smoothly as possible
But again, if you want to avoid the stress and uncertainty that can come with repairing a fire-damaged home and then trying to sell it yourself (Remember, most states’ disclosure laws mandate that you disclose previously known fire damage) …
Selling it “as is” to a company like WeBuyFireDamagedHouses.com can be a fast, convenient solution – and you may also get a much better price than you imagine.