It is common knowledge that major problems like cracks in the bricks and uneven floors signaling the need for expensive repairs diminish the value of your property. However, there are many little things that decrease the value of your property and literally add up to a serious reduction in the value of your home when they are seen on a large scale or occur at the same time.
Here are eight factors that will diminish the value of your property.
A Bad First Impression
An unattractive entryway creates a negative first impression of your home. Cobwebs around the lights and porch, muddy prints on the door, toys strewn through the yard and broken appliances on the porch all hurt the value of your home. Unkempt front yards with out of control landscaping also hurt your home’s value.
This is why home staging is becoming increasingly popular. Home staging, when done properly, can directly affect for how much and how fast your home sells. There are also many small renovations that you could do to increase the value of your home. Many people will deselect a home if the driveway is in poor condition. Damaged garage doors are also a big no. While the rest of your home might be in pristine condition, these two factors alone will significantly reduce the pool of buyers you’ll have access to.
If someone sees ants or roaches crawling around on open surfaces, they will think the problem is even worse in the parts of the house they cannot see. Untreated ant mounds or wasps’ nests indicate that the homeowner isn’t taking care of the property and can make visitors wonder how many unaddressed maintenance issues there are in the home.
Termites are known to decrease the value of the home, even if they haven’t caused proven structural damage. Hiring a professional pest control service to treat the home allows you to show home buyers that the issue is resolved, improving the value of your home in their eyes. Contact a company such as Raleigh NC Go-Forth Pest Control before you put your home on the market to inspect for signs of such insects and treat them if found to prevent their existence from hurting the value of your home. Even if your home is not up for sale, call Raleigh NC Go-Forth Pest Control if you think you have termites so that you don’t end up with costly structural damage to the property.
Blood sucking insects hurt your quality of life along with the value of your home. If someone walking through your home is bitten by fleas from your pets, they’ll lose the pleasant impression the home staging gave them. Bed bugs are such a liability that you are legally obligated to report the issue when trying to sell the home, and while they don’t leave the visible signs termites and ants might, their ugly bites will give home buyers pause.
A Dangerous Landscape
Homes with sinkholes see their property values descend as soon as a sinkhole forms. The existence of a sinkhole near the home reduces the value of the home by a third, not taking any repairs into account. If your home is on a hill that is eroding away, you’ll also see a reduction in the property’s value due to fear of potential damage or the cost of preventing the home from collapsing when the hill beside it does.
Age and Condition of the Home
While the age of the home won’t always have an effect on its price, its condition certainly will. An old, well-kept home can fetch as much or even more than a newer home with the same specifications. But don’t wrongly assume that all homes appreciate in value with time. Many factors outside of your control could negatively affect the value of your property.
Consider upgrading parts of your home if you want it to get a higher valuation. However, you need to be wise with your choices. In many cases, gilding the lily will be a much better investment than investing in granite countertops in your kitchen. Try to improve what is already great about your home without breaking the bank if you want a good return on your investment.
Your home’s value suffers when it is beside things other people don’t want to live by. For example, suburban homes close enough to landfills to smell them experience a five to eight percent reduction in value. Rural residences where the smell of livestock is common don’t suffer this problem. Homes within 500 feet of a billboard are worth an average $30,000 less than those further away.
Homes within two miles of a power plant are worth three to seven percent less than those further away. The standard coal fire plant is not a threat to residents, but the unsightly appearance of it is enough to lower the value of surrounding homes. Fracking will impact the value of the property if the well is visible, and if the fracking impacts the local groundwater residents drink, the home’s value could plummet by at least a quarter according to a paper by Resources for the Future.
Conversely, if the property receives natural gas royalties but doesn’t have a well on the property, the promise of income from the mineral rights improves the home’s value.
Noisy, disruptive neighbors also take five to ten percent off the value of a home, though this may not be obvious to home buyers unless they show up when a bad neighbor is holding a party. Conversely, this is why real estate agents suggest driving past the home in the evening or on the weekend, allowing them to check for this sort of problem.
Noise pollution, whether due to nearby train tracks, a highway or an airport will pull down the resale value of your home. If you live next door to a sex offender, property values drop by up to 12%, since many families won’t want to buy the home.
The mere existence of the property up for sale at a discount hurts the price of your home. And the impact multiplies with the number of foreclosures and their proximity. If the foreclosure is next door to your home, it takes an average of seven thousand dollars off the value of your home. For every home in foreclosure within 300 feet of yours, your home value will go down between one and two percent. If someone has to drive past multiple foreclosure signs to see your home, they may be afraid to buy it in case the neighborhood is left mostly vacant by foreclosures or fills up with renters who don’t care about the property as much as owners would.
The sight of messy neighbors and hoarders can also hurt the value of your home. This is why homeowner associations prohibit storing broken or dead appliances on porches or having perpetually repaired cars up on blocks outside the garage. Un-maintained homes with unkempt yards, peeling paint and those that are a general mess take five to ten percent off the value of next door neighbors’ homes. This explains why some communities send volunteers to help the elderly or poor maintain their properties, seeing it as an investment in everyone else’s property values.
If there are a number of unkempt properties around your home, your home’s value will nosedive because it suggests the neighborhood is going downhill and is even unsafe. People who don’t care to maintain their homes likely have little regard for the property rights of others. This isn’t due to poverty per se, since many poor people maintain gardens and clean homes. The lack of concern to maintain one’s own home, though, becomes contagious and can spread to a general unraveling of the community – and your home value will suffer because few will choose to move into such a neighborhood.
Homes in good school districts command a premium over those that don’t. Homes in walking distance of the local elementary school have a higher overall value – as long as it is a good school. Conversely, homes next to low ranking schools see significant declines in their value. While you can’t change the location of your home, you could always mention good schools in the area to prospective buyers.
All homes see a decline in their perceived value if it creates a bad first impression. Visible bugs hurt the value of your home, and in the case of termites, cause damage that permanently decreases the value of your home until repaired. Anything in the surrounding landscape that poses a risk to the home will hurt its value as will things people don’t want to live near. Neighbors who don’t keep up their property or disrupt the lives of others hurt your home’s value. Finally, if the home is assigned to bad schools, you’ll see its value decline along with the decreased demand for the property.