Should You Fix Foundation Issues Before Selling Your House

Foundation Issues & Selling Your Home

Are you trying to decide whether to fix foundation damage before putting your home on the market or sell it as-is? In that case, your choice will depend on a number of factors, including the extent of the damage, overall condition of your home, and whether the sales price will be high enough to cover at least all the costs incurred.

To begin with, selling a house with foundation problems is definitely possible. However, it’s not always recommended. To help you make the right decision, let’s find out exactly when you should and shouldn’t fix your foundation before selling your house.

When to Repair Your Foundation

Before we discuss the situations in which repairing foundation damage prior to selling your home makes sense, it’s important to determine if foundation repair is truly necessary. 

The only way to know for sure whether your home has a failing foundation is to contact an experienced foundation repair contractor that offers complimentary foundation inspections. The professional inspecting your foundation will start with a visual check of your home’s exterior, looking for:

  • Cracks, leaning, bowing, or bulging along exterior walls; 
  • Cracks or gaps in the foundation and/or the ground underneath it;
  • Outdoor elements, like stairs, columns, or chimneys, which may be tilting or pulling away from the home;
  • Water pooling next to your home or in the crawlspace, in case you have a pier and beam foundation.

 The professional will also check the interior of your home for signs that could signal foundation damage, such as:

  • Misaligned and/or sticking windows and doors;
  • Furniture, window/door frames, or moldings pulling away from the walls;
  • Cracks in drywall;
  • Bouncy, uneven, soft, or sloping floors;
  • Cracks in tile or vinyl flooring;
  • Cater stains on walls, ceilings, or floors.

If the inspection finds that foundation damage has caused any of the aforementioned issues, you can choose to fix your foundation before selling your home or sell it in its current condition. While selling your home as-is may sound tempting, here are 2 situations in which you should consider repairing the foundation first.

  • The amount you expect to receive from the sale falls short of your outstanding mortgage balance and closing costs. In this case, you may still be able to sell your home as long as the lender agrees to a short sale. But that means you might need to cover the difference out of your own pocket. On the other hand, having your foundation repaired can increase your home’s value considerably. In general, a compromised foundation can decrease a home’s sales price by 10% to 20%. As an example, if your home is worth $380,000, then you may only receive between $304.000 and $342,000, providing you sell it without fixing the foundation damage. That’s a difference of $38,000 up to $76,000. Even though having your foundation repaired can be expensive sometimes, these types of repairs always add structural integrity, cosmetic, and warranty value. This may allow you to sell your home for no less than its market value, meaning you might be able not only to pay off your remaining mortgage balance and closing costs but also to pocket some money.
  • You Want to Sell Your Home Fast. Although the duration of a foundation repair project depends on the extent and severity of the damage, it generally takes between 2 to 4 days to complete; however, many of our projects are completed in one day. Finding a buyer ready to make a fair offer on a house with foundation problems and a lender willing to approve a mortgage on a home in need of extensive repairs often takes more than that.

 When Not to Repair Your Foundation 

While selling your home as-is may deliver a series of benefits, the decision not to repair your foundation could make financial sense especially when:

  • The damage isn’t structural. If your foundation only has minimal cosmetic damage, such as a few hairline cracks, making repairs may not be worth it. Considering that about 90% of homebuyers renovate the homes they purchase, the chances are that the person buying your home will redo any cosmetic fixes done previously.  
  • You can’t afford to pay for repairs. If you don’t have the funds to repair your foundation, you have the option to sell your home as-is and let the buyer take on the responsibility of fixing it. Another alternative would be to opt for a foundation repair financing program, which will allow you to repair the foundation and get top dollar for your home without spending money on repairs upfront. 

Depending on how much foundation problems affect your home’s listing price and how much the foundation repair costs, it’s up to you to decide whether or not you should repair your foundation before selling your home. Either way, a complimentary foundation inspection, which will provide an educated assessment of all the required repairs along with an estimate, is the only thing that could help you make an informed decision. So, feel free to book your free foundation inspection and estimate with Allied Foundation today! 

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