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What to Expect When Selling a Fire-Damaged House

What to Expect When Selling a Fire-Damaged House

If you have a house that has been damaged by fire, selling that house can be difficult … but not impossible.

In this article, we are going to take a closer look at what you can expect when you put your fire-damaged house on the market.

The first major decision you will face with your fire-damaged house is whether you are going to try to sell the house “as is” or if you are going to try to renovate it.

Some Things to Consider:

When renovating the house the cost of repairs can be higher than what you first estimate because there is often damage beyond what the eyes can see.

For example, you will most likely have to deal with smoke damage and the removal of soot (which can be in the air ducts and other hard-to-see locations), both of these things can be hazardous to human (and pet) health and will need to be removed by highly trained professionals.

There may also be structural damage that you can’t easily see. So the best first step is to have an experienced inspector carefully look over the house and provide you with a report that lists all the damage you will need to repair.

One more thing to keep in mind about trying to sell a fire-damaged house is that most states require that you notify buyers of the previous fire damage.

Unfortunately, most buyers will not buy a fire-damaged house. Hearing a house has been involved in a fire is most often an immediate “turn off” and will cause even the most interested buyers to turn away and start looking at other houses.

What About Setting a Price When Selling a Fire-Damaged House?

As you can probably imagine, setting a sales price for a fire-damaged house can also be difficult.

Of course, you want to make as much money as you can on the sale of the home but you have to balance this desire with the fact that not many buyers are going to be interested in purchasing a house that has been damaged by fire.

This leaves most fire-damaged house sellers in a bit of a conundrum. Set the price too high and your house is likely to sit on the market without much interest at all for a long, long time. On the other hand, set the price too low and you risk not making as much money as you could have on the sale of the house.

To get the best sales price for your fire damaged house, carefully study the local market. You may want to work with a local real estate agent and get sell prices for comparable houses in the neighborhood.

Once you have those comps, don’t expect to sell your house for what similar houses are selling for – you will most likely need to offer a discount due to the homes poor history (the fire).

When you set the price of your home you will need to decide if you want to try to sell it on your own or if you want to hire a real estate agent, whose commission will cut into your earnings even more.

If you decide to try to sell the home on your own here are some buyer types that you should be familiar with so that you can identify them and in some cases save yourself some time and frustration.

House Buyer Types

Immediate Investor Buyers – These are everyone’s favorite buyers but they actually are very few in number, especially when it comes to investing in fire-damaged houses.

“Lookie Loo’s” – Unfortunately, these buyers are very common and if you are not careful they can end up wasting your time and causing you a great deal of frustration. These are the buyers that make you feel like they are actually ready to do something but they really aren’t. They will call you and talk to you forever and then finally say, “Well, let me think about it some more.” This is the buyer who will take up most of your time during the day and make you the least amount of money, and again many house sellers end up dealing with this type of buyer the most.

The Sleeping “Whale” Buyer – This buyer can be hard to recognize which often leads home sellers to spend a lot of time with buyers who later turn out just to be “lookie loo’s.” However, if you do come across a “sleeping whale buyer” then you could sell your house fast and for a good price. Of course, these types of buyers are very few and far between and not many are interested in fire-damaged houses.

The “Educated” Buyer – These buyers do their research and are experts on the local area and the local housing market. With this buyer you can make a fast sale but you probably can’t expect to get your asking price.

A Word of Warning …

Many owners when selling a fire damaged house lose hope quickly. If they don’t get immediate offers, doubts start to set in. They begin to wonder if the property is really worth what they thought it was and if they made the right decision to try to sell their fire-damaged house.

If you want to succeed, you will need to stay mentally strong and stay committed to selling the house even if things don’t go great from the start.

One way to avoid the difficulties that often come when selling a fire-damaged house is to contact We Buy Fire-Damaged Houses, which specializes in buying these types of houses.

The company is well-known for working with the owners of fire-damaged homes so that the owners are able to receive a very good price and sell their houses without experiencing stress and frustration that can often come with a long drawn out sales process.

Just fill out the form below to see if We Buy Fire-Damaged Houses will make an offer on your fire-damaged home.