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11 things that lower your home's value

#Selling a real estate property

Last update : 2024-01-05 13:18:17

Thinking about selling this year? Before you put your home on the market, you need to know it's worth. And while certain factors can help you increase the sale price, others can lower your home's value.

What are they? Why do they decrease the value of your home? We will tell you all about them.

Can a home lose value?

Although real estate tends to increase in value over the years, it is possible for your home to lose some of its market value. This depreciation can be more or less significant depending on the case. 

There are a number of reasons why the price of your home may decrease, and unfortunately they're not always within your control. These include

  • Real estate market conditions;
  • Mortgage lending conditions;
  • The neighborhood around your home;
  • Your property itself.

It's on this last point that the rest of this article will focus.

Prices going down

What can drive down the price of a home?

Let's take a closer look at some of the major factors that can affect a home's resale value.

1. Location

Location is undoubtedly one of the most important factors influencing the selling price of your home. An identical house in a beautiful neighbourhood with mature trees will necessarily be worth more than one in a disadvantaged neighbourhood with a higher crime rate. The idea remains the same if the beautiful forest next to you has been razed to the ground to build an industrial center.

Unfortunately, this is not something you can control. However, when selling, try to emphasize the positive aspects of your neighbourhood (e.g., proximity to a park or school) to convince buyers. And the next time you buy, choose your location carefully.

2. Unusual room layouts

Do the rooms in your home have an unusual layout? Can they be quickly converted to another use? While your current layout may suit you, future buyers may not. 

Most people in the market expect a fairly conventional layout that they can easily adapt to their needs and tastes. If your home's master bedroom is in the basement and the kitchen and dining room are not on the same level, your property will certainly lose some of its value.

Roof of a house

3. Roof and window condition

Does your building need a new roof? Do your windows need to be replaced? These are two examples of major, costly work that will inevitably reduce the value of your home and dampen the interest of potential buyers. 

4. Renovations that need to be done

Similarly, any repairs that need to be made to your home, even if they aren't urgent or major, are likely to lower its selling price. The more work that needs to be done, the more your home's value will suffer.

In this situation, you have two choices:

  • Reduce the price of your property to compensate for the expenses that will be incurred by the next owner;
  • Make renovations before selling to bring your home back into good condition.

5. Poor general condition of the house

Your home doesn't need any major work, but it does have several minor irritants? They may be small, but they're no less annoying.

Broken ceramic tiles, a cabinet that won't close, a squeaky door, peeling wallpaper, flaking paint, a leaky toilet, a scratched floor... These are just a few of the small defects that the potential buyer will notice during the pre-purchase inspection. They will undoubtedly use them to negotiate a lower sale price.

Decontaminating agent

Photo :

6. The presence of hazardous materials

Does your property contain certain materials that are considered harmful to health? Asbestos, lead, radon, pyrrhotite, mould... These are terms that potential buyers certainly don't want to come across!

The presence of any of these substances can not only affect the quality of the air in your home, it can also reduce its value. It's best to call a professional to fix the problem before you sell.

7. The unfinished basement

Finishing a basement can be very costly. You probably know this, and so does the buyer. Some people may avoid making an offer simply because of this.

Of course, you don't have to finish your basement before you put your house on the market. But a large, useless, unlivable space is not a desirable feature. You may have to lower your price to compensate.

8. Old-fashioned decor

A buyer's ability to picture themselves living in your home is an important factor in deciding whether or not to make an offer. Unfortunately, if your home's decor is eccentric, old-fashioned or outdated, people may find it hard to imagine living on the property. As a result, you risk missing out on good opportunities.

Don't hesitate to depersonalize your home to give your selling project a boost.


9. Carpeting

Wall-to-wall carpeting in every room of the house is becoming less desirable to buyers in favour of hardwood floors. Aside from being less aesthetically pleasing, carpet is also avoided by asthma and allergy sufferers as it can aggravate their symptoms. 

Do you like the feel of the carpet? It's best to opt for decorative, tastefully arranged carpets that you can take with you when you leave.

10. Poorly maintained grounds

Buyers won't just look at the condition of your home itself. They'll also look at the front and back yards. An unkempt yard is a bad sign to a potential buyer because it can indicate neglect on the part of the owner.

Keep the lawn mower running, maintain the pool, give the patio or fence a fresh coat of paint... Take care of your exterior and make sure everything is spotless.

11. A troubling history

Has your home been abandoned for several years? Has a crime been committed nearby? Has there been a death in the house? Is the property known to be the target of paranormal activity? Does your neighbour to the right compulsively accumulate garbage on his property?

Whatever the history of the house or neighbourhood, such events can have a direct impact on the value of your home, even if they are beyond your control. You'll need to disclose all of this information to potential buyers and be prepared to negotiate accordingly.

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