Selling Your House? Beware of These Dealbreakers

Selling your home can be a busy and stressful experience. The constant upheaval of sudden visitors and the need to keep everything as clean and neat as possible plus the worry that buyers might fixate upon something negative, either bailing on a deal or trying to rake you over the coals on price. Some big projects, like a full bathroom overhaul, may not be worth the investment cost to get fixed up, but the following items are big-ticket deal breakers you should seriously consider fixing before listing.

Wiring Problems

Wiring and electrical problems are a big issue for a prospective home buyer. Not only can old wiring cause flickering and unstable power, but faulty wiring is also a leading cause of house fires. Wiring issues are prevalent in homes built more than 20 years ago and are almost certainly present in a home more than 50 years old if it has not been updated. Hiring an electrician to update your home’s wiring can be pricey, but it is almost certainly necessary. If you elect to not fix this problem, a buyer will surely demand a reduction in the sale price to match the repair cost.


The presence of rodents tends to make people uncomfortable at best, regardless of the type of mice or rats. A home inspection will almost surely reveal any evidence of these critters, including chewed holes and the presence of rodent waste matter. Rodents are a huge turn-off for the majority of buyers, who will squirm at the thought of what is happening in the walls, basement or attic. If you have time, you can attempt to trap and remove the pests yourself, but if you are planning to sell quickly, it may be a wise investment to hire a professional exterminator to ensure the creatures are removed. Ensure damage is fixed and waste cleaned and disinfected before buyers walk through in order to eliminate any doubt.

Unpermitted Work

Minor home improvements such as painting, carpet installation and other similar projects don’t need to have permits, but most major work, electrical, plumbing or structural changes do. While some may see permits as bureaucratic nonsense, the truth is that permits are meant to protect a homeowner from shoddy work. Most professional companies will pull the required permits, but DIY attempts, shady companies or non-affiliated handymen types sometimes skip this step. Before selling, ensure any major additions to your home were permitted. If not, have that taken care of or you may run into a buyer who has already discovered the problem and blindsides you with their offer and advance knowledge.

Selling a home is all about balancing the cost of an update or project to the expected return on the investment. Minor updates can have a large impact, while more expensive updates can be unwise to pursue. However, issues that pose danger to the home and occupants are ones that must be taken care of, regardless of cost. Failure to have these items cleared prior to a sale means you risk losing buyers or may need to significantly reduce your sale price at the last minute to accommodate the repairs.

Let Bellanor Reality help you sell your home!