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Is it still possible to fix up a home for re-sell?

Blog by Robert Matthews | April 12th, 2017

A few of my clients have successfully fixed up properties for re-sell. Granted, unless you have very deep pockets, it's more difficult to do with today's high home prices. Following are a few good tips for today's market, and today's buyer, courtesy of Ozzie Jurock. (Reprinted from Ozzie Jurock's Facts by Email #6, February 13-20, 2017)

  • Buy an old house. Fix it up and sell it. It is a tried-and-true strategy that has started many successful real estate careers. It is bit harder to do these days because of the high detached housing costs, but even in the Lower Mainland, some pockets exist:

    • We like Port Coquitlam (you can still find detached houses under $600,000 and SkyTrain has arrived nearby); North Surrey (fast growing municipality and fixer-uppers in the $600-$670,000 range and where we found one old timer this week (MLS R2131208) near SkyTrain for $429,800; and Delta (new bridge coming).

    • Or, nearly any good-size town east or west of Metro Vancouver, such as Chilliwack or Nanaimo.

  • But you have to fix the houses up to attract modern buyers, who are all apparently following the same design trend: this means opening up the space.

  • Whatever price point you are targeting buyers are expecting a more open floor plan. You need to figure out how to connect kitchen, dining room and living space into a place where family and friends can gather and interact while still meeting all the needs of cooking.

  • If you can't completely take out walls, create other openings that give an illusion of openness so at least those in the kitchen can see into the living room or family room.

  • Major Point: Never, ever forget that kitchens and bathrooms sell houses. Those are the best places to put your money to turn a better profit. Don’t spend any money in the backyard or upstairs. Use modern colours and stay away from pure white. Use a feature wall colour to blend with the floor boards.