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Fixer Upper

As mentioned in our last article, “Are Vacation Homes A Good Buy,” fixer uppers for the purpose of renting out or reselling have increased in popularity for potential home buyers. Although these homes sometimes require extensive repairs, these cheaper properties require only a little revenue before the house pays for itself!

According to articles by Business Insider, U.S. News, This Old House, and HouseLogic, here are some important things to consider before selecting a fixer upper:


The neighborhood’s overall market price has a direct effect on your home, especially if you’re planning to sell or rent out your home after renovation. Your home may be worth a lot after renovations, but if the market value of homes in that neighborhood is significantly lower than your own home’s value, you will have to adjust your pricing accordingly in order to attract potential buyers.


Depending on the condition of the home, renovations may be costly. Before purchasing your fixer-upper, assess the extent and costs of repairs (time, monetary, materials, and labor). Additionally, factor in 10%-20% in fees for potential problems, permit costs, and renovations loans such as home equities or mortgages if you’re planning to apply for any. Even better, bring a contractor or inspector to the showing to receive a professional evaluation of the condition of the house. Any damages or drawbacks can also be utilized in negotiating pricing on your end!

Ideally, the best type of fixer upper to invest in are those that only need aesthetic improvements such as window shutters or lighting fixtures. These houses require a low initial renovation cost yet can yield a high return in market value. Conversely, avoid fixer uppers that demand major structure or electrical repairs as these houses will be costly to repair without guaranteeing a comparable return in market value.

Once you’ve found the perfect fixer upper, consider these items before renovating:

Assess Costs

In assessing the extent and costs of repairs, decide which projects you can personally handle and which require professional assistance. Remember that although you may be able to carry out the renovations yourself, you may not be saving money given the amount of time you’re personally investing. When in doubt, hire an expert to help!

Prioritize Renovations

Although a balcony would look great on your new house, it might not necessarily be the best renovation to start with if it’s currently the end of summer. Although aesthetic repairs are great, prioritizing renovations according to their necessity will save you time and money, especially if you’re hoping to sell the fixer upper as soon as possible. At the end of the day, functionality is more important than design.

Now that you have these handy tips for purchasing and renovating fixer uppers, all you need to do now to start looking for the fixer upper!


And if you’re interested in renting out your fixer upper, let Pillow help you!

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About PillowPillow is creating a new way for people to become excited about renting their property. We are a technology enabled short-term rental platform that connects homeowners, guests, and vendors to provide a standardized rental experience. For homeowners, the ‘Pillow Promise’ means we maximize your income and care for your rental. For guests, it means we deliver an authentic and reliable hospitality experience.

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