I previously wrote an article covering Easily Fixable Features That Puts Buyers Off when trying to sell a house. Since then I decided to go one step further and dedicate a list of features that can essentially make prospective buyers walk away because the problems aren’t all that superficial, consequently there is no easy antidote.
These features should be noted before purchasing to avoid major problems down the line. It’s easy to look past rotting paint, peeling wallpaper and dirty carpets. But what if the problems are out of your control? How unattractive does a property become then?
It’s important to remember that any ‘property purchase’ IS an investment, regardless of whether your incentives of purchasing is purely based on your personal pleasure and comfort. Further down the line you may want to, or even need to, sell the property and that’s when the problems you’ve loved to accept may cause problems for other potential buyers.
The key to property investment is buying a property that people WILL buy, whether that be for renting or buying, and the best way to do that is to find out what people DON’T want. Right.
Topping the list of ‘must-haves’ is a garden. Yup, a patch of private green to roll around on and do whatever we damn please is a desirable feature. What can I say? People like the green, whether that involves BBQs or topless sunbathing, I’m not going to argue.
If you’re buying a property without a garden, or an extremely small garden, remember you’re heavily alienating yourself from the majority of the market when it’s time to sell. Not a good start.
I’m pretty convinced that a buyer knows whether they want a garage or not before they start property hunting. And considering how much extra a property with a garage costs (a significant amount), I’m going with my spider senses, which tell me that a lot of people would happily live without a garage because property is expensive enough. Besides, it’s not like the average person drives a Bentley anyways. However, according to The Co-operative Bank, 28% of people consider a garage a crucial deciding factor. Perhaps it’s something to think about…
It’s all bunnies, daisies and sunshine when the property is in perfect condition, but what about the neighbourhood? According to a recent survey by Propertyfinder.com, 79% of people are completely put off by vandalism and graffiti. You know the old saying, “you can’t put a diamond on a piece of brass and expect it to look like gold”. No matter how nice a property is, if the surrounding area is a bogged down by unsavoury acts of deviance, the property won’t shine. Ever.
Before committing to a purchase, do some independent neighbourhood watch; you know, look at a few walls and stuff for graffiti.
Teenagers loitering in the street
In recent years there’s been an abundance of rats populating the streets; usually seen in Burberry and 9carrot Argos jewellery and going by the trade name of “chavs”. These youths have become so powerful that they can actually make house prices tumble like Lego blocks.
Apparently 52% of home buyers are put off by teenagers loitering in the street. I’m not usually one to judge and generalise, but I can safely say that a pack of chavs is enough to put me off from a neighbourhood…
Once again, independent neighbourhood watch is highly recommended. Look out for Burberry covered car seats and blurring Garage music.
House on a main road
Not the most obvious hurdle, but definitely an important one. 30% of people wouldn’t even contemplate buying a property on a main road. Why? Well, I can think of a few reasons. For one, it would be extremely noisy, especially if the property didn’t have double glazing. Secondly, pulling in and out of a main road in a car could prove to be frustrating, not to mention dangerous. Those are just a few reasons out of several. Ultimately, I know which I would prefer if I had the choice between a property tucked away in a cul-de-sac and a property on a main road. It’s a no-brainer for me.
A lot of people rely on public transport; whether that be so their kids can get to school or because they need it for work themselves. Not only is public transport an extremely desirable feature, but it also adds a lot of value. Research released by HotProperty.co.uk finds property within a five minute walk of a tube station can be up to 21% or some £80,000 more expensive than a similar property half an hour away, where public transport lacks. Cha-ching. It’s definitely worth taking into consideration…
Disclaimer: I'm just a landlord blogger; I'm 100% not qualified to give legal or financial advice. I'm a doofus. Any information I share is my unqualified opinion, and should never be construed as professional legal or financial advice. You should definitely get advice from a qualified professional for any legal or financial matters. For more information, please read my full disclaimer.