Pros and Cons to Selling Your House As Is

Selling a house as is has its benefits and drawbacks. Explore this home-selling strategy and what it means for both sellers and potential buyers.

May 21, 2024 min read

The home-selling process can be challenging at times. This is especially true if sellers are trying to move quickly or are hoping to avoid costly renovations. That’s why some homeowners choose to list their house as is.

Selling a House As Is

Selling a house as is means the homeowner will not make repairs or renovations before selling it to a buyer, even if the home has structural concerns or is in poor condition. If you’re considering selling a home as is, you can expect a couple of nice perks, yet there could also be a few limitations you’ll want to be aware of.

In what follows, we’ll break down the pros and cons of selling your house in its current condition and provide other helpful insights for an as-is home sale or purchase.

The Benefits of Selling a House As Is

First, let’s go over some reasons why you might opt to sell your house as is.

Sell fast

If you have a pressing timeline and need to sell your home right away without putting in a ton of effort, you have the option of just selling it as is. Home-buying companies may be eager to take a home off your hands. Other cash buyers, like investors, may also be ready to buy your house quickly. Especially in a seller’s market, you will likely be able to sell successfully.

Save money on home improvements

When you sell your house under less urgent circumstances, a common strategy is to get the most money from your sale by fixing up your home before listing it. You may also be required to make repairs to meet certain state standards in order to sell your home. Buyers will have an inspection done and the cost of some repairs or updates, especially those regarding safety, often falls to the seller. Selling as is means you can usually avoid those possibly expensive repairs.

Attract home rehabbers and house flippers

A lot of buyers who want to make renovations and changes based on their own preferences prefer the perk of paying a bit less for an as-is home and applying the funds saved for custom improvements.

Less hassle and negotiating

A home inspection that uncovers a lot of issues can cost a decent amount of money upfront. While the seller isn’t necessarily required to make all renovations or repairs, the buyer and seller must negotiate who will pay for what in a typical sale. If you don’t want to spend the time and money tackling those projects, it may be harder to sell your house at your original asking price. By selling the home as is, you get to take negotiations over requested upgrades and repairs entirely out of the equation.

The Cons of Selling an As-Is Home

Selling a home as is can be a great option for some people, but selling your home like this also has its challenges.

Make less money off the sale

Usually, you will make less money selling your home as is than listing it traditionally.

Since homes listed to sell as is often need repairs the owner wants to avoid paying for, these home listings are more likely to attract buyers looking for a deal. Unfortunately, even if your home is in excellent condition, if you list it with an as-is clause, people will generally expect you to sell your home at a lower price.

Fewer buyers available

Since the majority of buyers typically prefer a home to be move-in ready, you may have a smaller audience of interested parties for your fixer-upper. This type of property may also appear worn, which may not appeal to as many home shoppers.

Securing financing can also be an issue for folks, since many lenders require the home to meet certain living conditions. The affordability of the mortgage can play a part as well since the buyer will be purchasing the home with a financial commitment to make improvements.

Buyers don’t want the hassle of hiring contractors

Buyers may not want to hire contractors to assess the home and estimate a fair purchase price.

Buyers may already be hesitant about taking on a project and feel the cost of hiring contractors isn't worth it. That being said, sellers are still legally and ethically obligated to disclose major issues to buyers, which can lower the home's value.

Alternatives to Selling a House As Is

If selling your house as is isn’t right for you, there are a few viable alternatives to consider:

  • Update and repair — Invest some money and time to fix and update your home. With a few repairs and renovations, you may be able to command a higher price than selling as is.
  • Rent your home out — If you don’t need to sell your home for a down payment on your next home, you may be able to rent it out. This may be an especially practical option if you live in a tourist area, college town, business district or other strong rental market location.

Tips for Selling a House As Is

If you’re ready to sell your house as is, here are some tips to help with the process.

Know the Type of Buyer You Want To Attract

There will be a big difference between your average buyer seeking a home to live in and an investor looking to flip your house. Investors specifically go after as-is homes and have the upfront cash needed to buy your property, so your house doesn’t need to meet too many conditions to be competitive.

Conversely, someone in the market for a home to live in will have much different expectations. While they won't expect you to fix your home, they will expect to pay less for your home than it would typically go for. Keep in mind that even if a buyer is seeking an as-is home, they will still likely hesitate to make an offer on homes that have too many major issues.

Consider the Condition of Your Home

Like with a more traditional sale, your home will still have an appraisal and an inspection, affecting the purchase price.

If your home is in moderately good condition and still livable, your house could be an optimal option for more typical homebuyers. If your house will be a big reno project, you should target investors to get the most money off the sale.

Sell in the Right Market

A seller’s market — when there’s more home demand than supply — is the best time to sell your home as is. You can sell your home for a more competitive price because, despite the extra cost, buyers may be more willing to fix up a home than not move into a new home at all. The market conditions will always affect how much you lose by selling a house as is.

Emphasize Other Property Selling Points

For most buyers, money is a significant factor in selecting a home — and a home with lots of repairs and renovations means lots of extra expenses. However, some as-is homes may have other desirable traits that make the purchase worthwhile. For example, location is of primary importance for a lot of people. If you have a home in a highly sought-after neighborhood, there’s a better chance that you’ll be able to sell your house as is.

The Bottom Line: How Much Money Could You Lose Selling a House As Is?

You usually won’t make the same kind of money selling your home in as-is condition as you would selling it the traditional way. While there’s no single answer to this question, most as-is sellers can expect to get between 75 and 95 percent of their home’s value.

Tips If You Are Looking To Buy a House As Is

If you are considering buying an as-is home, here are some tips to keep in mind.

Plan for a Home Inspection

You should always get a home inspection if you're seriously considering buying. This is especially essential for as-is homes.

Sellers shouldn’t hide issues with their homes, but they may not always be forthcoming or even be aware of certain problems. A home inspection lets you know what you’re working with so you don’t invest all of your time and resources into a never-ending money pit.

Know the Required Home Inspection Standards for Lenders

If you’re like most people, you don’t have hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash to splurge on a house, which means you'll need a mortgage loan to purchase a home, even a fixer-upper. Make sure you can afford the necessary repairs to your prospective home; otherwise, the home may not qualify for a mortgage loan.

Rely on Experts

A good real estate agent will help you navigate and negotiate buying a home as is. Sellers have every right to sell their home exactly as it is, but they are also legally required to disclose details about their home, including the challenges. As a local expert, your agent should know the market conditions and can help you determine whether or not you should commit to an as-is home.

Also note that if a lender won’t loan you a certain amount of money for a home, that indicates the property isn’t suitable for living in and may not be worth your efforts and time unless fixed.

What Are Market Conditions?

Market conditions refer to the various key economic and social factors that determine the state of the housing market, and in turn, the current perceived value of your home. These include mortgage rates, economic conditions like employment, the cost of living, wage levels and consumer confidence — all which simultaneously tie into the concept of supply and demand, influencing housing prices. These conditions can be national, regional, and even become hyper focused on a particular neighborhood or specific type of property.

For example, let’s say employment levels are high and a larger percentage of the population has steady employment and income. If this is the case, it’s also likely that more people will be in the market to buy a home because they can afford it. This increases demand, and therefore the price of housing will usually follow that upward trend. The opposite is generally true, too — if unemployment is high and people aren’t buying, the cost of homes will go down.

Depending on the market condition of your area, you may or may not be able to easily sell your home. If housing is competitive and favors the seller, then the market conditions will favor an as-is home sale. If the cost of homes is low, then buyers would benefit from purchasing a turn-key home if they can afford it rather than taking on an as-is home with projects.

What To Know About the “As-Is Condition” Clause

Sellers of as-is homes are responsible for revealing known problems with the property. An "As-Is Condition" clause is part of the real estate contract that protects the seller from liability should the buyer discover unknown or other defects with the home after purchasing it.

The as-is clause explains that the buyer is willing to accept the home in its current condition and agrees to forego requesting the seller to make repairs or a price reduction based on property problems. However, the as-is clause does not relieve a seller from liability should it be found that the seller intentionally misrepresented a defect or did not disclose a known problem.

The Right Move for You

The most beneficial way to sell your home or buy a new one depends on many personal factors. If you’re curious about the current market value of either your home or any property on your wishlist, you can explore Pennymac’s home value estimator to get an instant estimate of the value and view recent home sales in the searched region. A Pennymac Loan Expert can also help you get a realistic estimate of how much buying power you have and what your best home loan options would be based on your future plans.



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