New Stove Sells House

My parents just sold their house, a big deal for them, especially because it’s been on the market since the beginning of the summer. The appliances clinched it. They appliances were 10 years old, and while they were in perfect working order, they just didn’t look “contemporary.”

My parents had an interested buyer and were close to de-listing the place and changing around some of the things they had gotten negative feedback on (brass fixtures, brown carpet, new paint job, appliances). They had already put in the order for new appliances. After the prospective buyers saw the printouts of the new appliances laid out on the counter, they bit at the apple with a low-ball offer. My parents countered by slightly lowering their price. “Final offer,” they said. That day, boom, sale.

It’s a buyers market and they can get away without having any imagination. Don’t like the carpet? There’s 3 places down the street to check out. So listen to issues that keep popping up in the house feedback and be willing to put in a few upgrades and makeovers and you can go from fail to sale.

(Photo: Getty)

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  1. I like the picture…

  2. Celticlady says:

    As a professional Real Estate Agent, listening to the feedback is CRUCIAL!!

    It’s really simple folks, those sellers who are listening to the professionals, ARE selling their homes. The market has changed in most areas….face the reality and listen to those who can help you!

    It’s amazing that people see real estate as a hobby….and give their “free” advice (and it’s worth what you pay for it)!

    ok, yeah I know, here come the “horrible realtor” stories. Let’s face it folks, we could mention ANY profession and have those roll out.

    Congrats on the house sale though

  3. mexifelio says:

    Yeah, at first from looking at the picture I thought they were going to sell the house because it had a gas stove instead of electric.

  4. Johnny Blackshoe says:

    Do people still flip houses? Or has that fad ended?

  5. anneofandover says:

    Wouldn’t a buyer have been better off making an offer pre-appliance upgrade, not having to deal with a counter offer from the sellers, and going to one of the many, many applicance stores out there and picking out the appliances themselves? Personally, I’d rather buy a house with old appliances for less money and upgrade them myself with my own choices. Hell, I might even replace a carpet or paint the walls. I guess I bought my houses during a seller’s market.

  6. Crazytree says:

    kitchens and bathrooms show the most age of any room in the house… usually shitty tile.

    fix that and your house will shoot up in value.

  7. yashichi8bit says:

    The house I got into last year (just prior to my purchase) was turned down by a buyer who didn’t like the interior paint. She lost out on an amazing home at a fantastic price for one of the easiest remodeling jobs there is.

    After the purchase though I was told she came back to the seller to see if the house was for sell…I guess she figured it out a little too late.

  8. anneofandover says:

    From what I’ve seen on the HGTV, you could slap down the ugliest granite counters and the put in the cheapest stainless steel appliances and buyers would ooh and ahh like they’ve never seen anything finer. The show Designed to Sell comes to mind.

  9. kittenfoo says:

    my house was built in 1930 and still has several of the original art deco features. if and when i ever decide to sell, there is no way i’ll redo everything in that generic, socially acceptable style that screams, “welcome to the radisson!” my conscience would torment me forever.

  10. DojiStar says:

    Or the buyer could have made a low ball offer and bought the appliances that they wanted after the sale.

    Friggin buyers are such idiots. They buy houses because they like how it is decorated. When you buy a house IT COMES EMPTY!! Buy ugly houses cheap and fix then up people. You will come out ahead every time.

  11. mexifelio says:

    I <3 Lisa LaPorte!

  12. balthisar says:

    @anneofandover: Hear hear! I bought my house during a sellers’ market, but got lucky. Just did the kitchen this spring. I wouldn’t wanted a completely new kitchen, because it still wouldn’t be *mine*. Luckily most buyers aren’t as discriminating as me, so if I had to sell tomorrow, then at least, “hey! new kitchen!”

  13. mopar_man says:

    The wife and sister-in-law (she lives with us) normally watch this house flipping/remodeling/real estate shows. I try not to pay attention but sometimes the TV grabs it. It irks me when these whiney twits go into a house and piss and moan about the appliances being white and a few years old. God help you if you can’t live with a stove that’s 3 years old and not stainless steel. I personally NEVER want a stainless appliance of any kind. That much maintenance to keep an appliance clean is stupid.

  14. XTC46 says:

    @Johnny Blackshoe: that fad ended when people were no longer able to get 400k mortgages while making 40k a year. There are still people who flip houses for the really high end market, but profits aren’t as huge and the scale is much smaller.

  15. miran says:

    My parents are those people. They have never chosen a paint color that wasn’t already on the wall. Drives me freaking insane.

  16. BlondeGrlz says:

    @anneofandover: I watched that last night! The sellers replaced the stove and fridge with stainless, but they put a fake silver covering on the dishwasher to make it look new. No one even noticed! The house sold for $60,000 over asking. Crazy.

  17. clickertrainer says:

    @mexifelio: if she says “Instant value” one more time I will scream. Or cancel Comcast. If I can.

  18. EtherealStrife says:

    Personally I’d rather have the funky old appliances. Modern ones are built to break down after just a few years, even if you go with a good brand.

  19. headon says:

    @Celticlady: why would anybody use a realtor. I have used 4 in my life. Never again. They are worthless, highly overpaid and down right bold faced liars. Remember a realtor never has your best interest at heart just the commission.

  20. cvsdave says:

    Lets look from a different perspective…
    When we were shopping for a house, we became very suspicious of new appliances, or new roof, or new exterior paint. As you might suspect, most often the absolute least expensive solution had been chosen – after all, this is a situation where the [upgrade/repair] purchaser will soon not be the owner! A second issue: I wouldn’t feel good about buying low quality and foisting it off on the gullible. Even as a careful consumer I think that there is much to the world other than dollars.

  21. UpsetPanda says:

    @headon: That’s a little angry..and mean…Celticlady should be able to smack you with her ‘for sale’ signs.

  22. CumaeanSibyl says:

    @headon: Wow, that was uncalled for.

  23. BlondeGrlz says:

    @Celticlady: Ignore the haters. Rise above. I heart my Realtor.

  24. jamesdenver says:

    It annoys me on HGTV’s House Hunters when they walk in to a room and say “Hmmm, I don’t care for the paint…”

    I want to scream “You’re kidding. That’s an afternoon of work at most on a room…”

  25. facework says:

    @HEADON: Right on. Ditto.

  26. Majisto says:

    @HEADON: Your comment is SPOT ON!

  27. Hamm Beerger says:

    headon is right on. CelticLady is obviously a bit self-interested, which is why realtors suck to begin with.

  28. Eilonwynn says:

    My partner, who works in construction, is no longer *allowed* to watch house flipping shows – it makes us both so angry at stupid buyers, and makes us both want to trash our credit to do the house flipping thing just because we know better.

  29. Me - now with more humidity says:

    Headon is an idiot. A good Realtor will make you much more than he or she gets in commission. A bad one won’t. But there are more good ones than bad — not that whiners like Headon would ever let that get in the way of a wishful thinking slam post.

  30. ElJefe says:

    @CELTICLADY

    “here come the “horrible realtor” stories. Let’s face it folks, we could mention ANY profession and have those roll out.”

    LOL, you’re right! Ask *any* profession, and they can give you “horrible realtor” stories.

  31. CumaeanSibyl says:

    Realtors are necessary when you’re trying to sell a house in a buyer’s market. There’s a house on my block that’s been FSBO for at least six months, and it’s nice, too — they ripped it down to the studs and did a complete remodel inside and out, new HVAC, new roof and siding, new drywall and floors and everything. They just switched to Prudential last week and I’ll be keeping an eye on it, but I suspect they’ll have much better luck this way. Having your home registered with a real estate agency means that, not only will that specific agency spread the word to all its customers, but other agencies will pick up the listing because of broker reciprocity.

    There’s one house-flipping show called “Property Ladder,” which shows disastrous flips done by people with no clue whatsoever. At least 75% of the time, these people decide to try to sell the house themselves, and by the time they do manage to sell it — several months later — they’ve lost whatever profit they might have salvaged out of their cost overruns. Yes, realtors take a 6% commission, but you have to ask yourself: how many months of carrying costs can you bear before it would’ve been cheaper just to pay the percentage?

  32. Major-General says:

    @CumaeanSibyl: I don’t thing it’s the neccessarily the 6% commissions that people object to. It’s being lied to by their realtors.

  33. somecop says:

    @CumaeanSibyl: I just bought a month ago that was FSBO. I got sick of dealing with Realtors so I fired up Craigslist and got an amazing deal that would have been several thousand more if a Realtor was involved. Plus with all the places that will stick you on the MLS for a small fee their days are numbered anyway.

    /used to be a Realtor
    /Mom’s a broker
    /Still don’t care for them

  34. 2ciaos.blogspot.com says:

    Here in Europe we buy houses with absolutely NOTHING. No stove, frig, cabinets, closets, not even a toilet seat -just the tile or wood floor. So it is funny to me when I hear people talking about a stove or carpet. I personally wouldn’t want all that. I want nothing -I don’t even care if you paint the house black. I’m only looking at the bones of a house. Now that I’m looking for a house in the states I’m really overwhelmed by how much “stuff” houses get sold with. Do you seriously even want the toilet seat of the previous owner??

  35. privatejoker75 says:

    we sold our house last spring and we included the stainless steel fridge in the sale because we didn’t feel like moving it 1600 miles. 50% of the comments from potential buyers mentioned that fridge and also the stainless steel oven. $2000 in applicances sold a $350k house…or helped anyway

  36. privatejoker75 says:

    http://www.hungryrealtors.com for those interested. You post your house info and realtors respond with commision bids. We appected one for a total of 2.8% and saved ourselves about $8,000 in commision.

    The whole system needs to be revamped. I don’t see a need personally for a realtor. You should be able to list your house for sale somewhere and pay a lawyer to take care of the paperwork

  37. hollerhither says:

    @headon:
    That is crap. I’m working with a great realtor (buyer’s agent).

  38. hollerhither says:

    @mopar_man:
    10 years from now stainless steel/granite counters will be as identifiable and dated as avocado green/wood paneling is today. I will be partially remodeling the kitchen (in the house we are purchasing WITH a realtor’s help) and we’re sticking with white appliances.

  39. quagmire0 says:

    We also upgraded our appliances before we put our townhome on the market. Despite the fact that we have multiple units in our subdivison and a few on our own courtyard that had more rooms for close to what we were asking, (we actually had the 2nd smallest model in the subdivision), we were able to sell in a few months, as opposed to the other units that are still sitting there and were on the market before ours. So yeah, it makes a big difference.

    Now the problem is, we need to find a friggin’ place to live!!! :D

  40. quagmire0 says:

    What I love watching these days are the ‘We’ll remodel your house to sell!’ or ‘Flip this house’ type shows. Very rarely do they ever end an episode with someone having sold their house. It’s always something like “Gee, thanks guys, the house is still on the market 6 months later, but we KNOW that it will sell soon!”

    lol

  41. Instigator says:

    @hollerhither: Always good to hear a Voice of Reason! I’m not a member of the granite countertop/stainless steel appliance cult, either.

  42. quagmire0 says:

    We did SS for our house to get it to sell – just something to make it ‘pop’ a little. In our next home, I’d probably go with Black or White, which is easier to care for IMO.

  43. @kittenfoo: Luckily there is a contingent of buyers out there who want homes with character! (I, too, would never ruin my home’s unique features to turn it into another “big box” house. :P )

    @Johnny Blackshoe: We have a neighbor who “flips” houses, but what she does is buy the fixer-upper, move into it for two years with her family while upgrading it, and then sell it and move again. She’s been doing it since long before flipping became a fad, and I suspect she’ll be doing it for a long time to come. Although her way requires a VERY tolerant family!

    @privatejoker75: “You should be able to list your house for sale somewhere and pay a lawyer to take care of the paperwork”

    I do that (for FSBOs), and my experience is FSBOs are fairly successful IF you’re living in the realm of reality (that is, pricing right), IF you don’t have your head too far up your ass to manage basic paperwork, and IF you’re not a super-hurry to sell. The last two I did sold in four and six weeks, but that varies quite a bit.

    I, on the other hand, used a realtor and liked her quite a bit. I probably won’t FSBO myself when the time comes just because I don’t want the hassle and I like my realtor a lot. But I don’t live in an overheated market and realtor misbehavior seems a lot less common down here where everyone knows everyone and the latest realtor who screwed her clients is now suffering an Amish-style shunning.

  44. mopar_man says:

    @headon:

    I have to agree. I tried 3 realtors to sell my house. All three of them were useless. I sold the house on my own in a week (6 months on the market for each realtor).

  45. mopar_man says:

    I should also mention that I asked more for the house than the realtors did.

  46. privatejoker75 says:

    @Eyebrows McGee: there was too much competition when we sold for a FSBO and realtors (although sworn to show a buyer ALL houses) will seldom show a FSBO home if there are 40 other comparable homes offering an easier deal

  47. ladycrumpet says:

    My boss recommended her realtor to me, and the first place he showed us was the one that we ultimately bought. He’s super-nice, responsive, and even donated a portion of his commission to charity on our behalf. With his help, we’ve become first-time homeowners (one year today!). So the good ones are out there.

  48. Youthier says:

    @ladycrumpet: Ditto. Our realtor was very friendly and helpful. He knew what he was talking about and worked to find nice homes in the low end of our price range. And as first-time home buyers, he always answered when we had our “What do we do now?!?!” phone calls.

    @DojiStar: Fixing up houses is not always the best way to go. The flipping houses trend was ridiculous because people with money but no construction experience or talent were attempting massive projects on their own. They assume that these trades are easy because the people in them typically have no college education but some projects are not for the inexperienced. I know some people who lost lots of money because a professional had to come in a fix their mistakes just so they could unload the house. Morons.

  49. Gesualdo says:

    For those in need of advice or answers to your questions about buying or selling a house, check out AskEdith.com. When I was buying my first home, that site really came in handy and actually helped me avoid a mistake which would have cost me a lot of money.

  50. Mary says:

    Just want to throw in that we had two places we were looking at, identical condos in the same complex. One was in good shape, but still being lived in and would need work. We knew the appliances would need replacing over the next few years.

    The other was more expensive, but had just been completely renovated, top to bottom. New appliances with the tags still on them. New floors, new doors, custom closets.

    We bought the more expensive place without even blinking, the new appliances made it well worth the price we paid because we knew they wouldn’t need replacing any time soon.