Selling a House With Storm Damage
Storms can cause major damage to a property. Strong winds could fell trees, blow debris around, and even peel off large portions (or in the worst case, the entirety) of your roof. As your roof is critical in protecting your home against the elements, once it's gone, all bets are off.
Additionally, rains brought on by the storm could cause serious flood damage. Extensive cleanup is required, otherwise the water damage can be insidious and could bring on a whole host of other problems such as mold and severe damage compromising the structural integrity of your house, especially if you have wooden beams and columns.
Most homeowners aren't emotionally and financially equipped to deal with this, and they'd rather just sell the property and move somewhere else.
If you're one of those, we put together this guide to walk you through the process of putting your storm damaged property on the market so you'd know what to prepare for and what you'd need to do.
Steps in Selling a Storm Damaged Home
File a Claim With Your Insurance Company
After a natural disaster, your first order of business should be to call your insurance company.
In case of hurricanes, floods, or tornadoes, large swathes of land may be damaged, affecting multiple neighborhoods. Many homeowners would have the same idea, so your insurance company is likely deluged with insurance claims. You definitely want to be the first ones to collect a check so you'd know sooner what you can do moving forward.
Call for a Home Inspection
A professional inspector will check every nook and cranny of your house and issue a report which can guide you in making repairs.
Decide Whether It’s Worth It to Do All the Repairs
The inspection report would give you a clear picture on the extent of the storm damage. Get in touch with contractors; they can usually give you a free quote. Afterwards, take stock of your finances to check if you can afford it.
Price Your Storm Damaged House Accordingly
Setting a reasonable listing price is the key to getting the most buyers to view your property.
If you'd like to sell as is, deduct the cost of repairs from your asking price. It may even be helpful to pass on the quotes obtained from the contractors you have contacted to prospective buyers so they can decide if they're going ahead with the deal.
When you're looking to sell post-repair, check out the prices of recently-sold similar properties in your area or in other neighborhoods so that you can set a competitive price.
Can You Sell Storm Damaged Property?
Yes! There are no legal impediments in selling a damaged house, as long as you comply with disclosure requirements as outlined in local laws.
However you have to decide: fix first, or just sell everything as is?
Repair Before Selling Your House
To get top dollar for your house, consider doing the necessary repairs first. It may include, but is not limited to:
- replacing damaged beams
- restoring flooring, walls, and ceilings
- replacing roofing and gutters
- mold remediation
Afterwards, arrange a deep cleaning service to get rid of bad odors in case your home got flooded.
Sell Your House as Is
In cases of extensive damage arising from a natural disaster, repairs can quickly become costly.
Money from the insurance check may not be enough to cover the repairs needed, forcing you to shell out money upfront. As an added blow, Stanford researchers found that houses located in areas with significant flooding risk lose 5-10% in property value. In the end, you end up losing money.
If this is the case, you may be better off selling your house as is. However, you must realize that if you sell your home in as is condition, expect your selling price to take a hit.
Just be sure to make the appropriate disclosures about your home's condition, so it won't get you into any legal trouble later on.
Options in Selling Property With Storm Damage
Traditional Sale: Go Through a Real Estate Agent
If you have significantly invested both time and money in repairing the storm damage, might as well go the whole nine yards and get your property into local listings by working with a real estate agent.
They take charge of the whole selling process: looking for potential buyers, staging your house, dealing with showings, and negotiations. All you need to do is sign on the dotted line once you approve of the buyer.
While it sounds convenient, you'll have to pay realtor commissions fees and the associated closing costs, which can run up to 11% of the sale price when added together. Add in the cost of making repairs, and you might find that it isn't so profitable after all.
In that case, you might want to opt for a...
Fast Sale: Go Directly to a Cash Buyer
Looking for a fast sale? Sell your home off market to a cash buyer such as a real estate investor or a house flipper.
Doing so frees you up from arranging an inspection, spending to fix the damage caused by the storm, and the uncertainty of waiting for potential buyers on the open market. Let's face it, the buyer pool for a storm damaged house is extremely shallow, so it can be extra challenging to find the right buyer that would get it for a reasonable price.
When you sell your home to a real estate investor, you get the following benefits: an instant cash offer, no repairs and renovations needed on your end, and the certainty of a quick cash sale.
The only tradeoff you have to make is selling for less than the market value, but since you're spared from plenty of headaches and hassles, you may find that you still come out on top.
Closing Thoughts: Selling Your House After a Storm
Here at House Buyer Network, we're cash buyers of houses in absolutely any condition! Skip the hassles and cost of doing repairs or dealing with realtors!
We immediately connect you real estate experts familiar with the local market so you get a fast, fair, and honest cash offer for your storm damaged house. You don't even have to worry about closing costs--we got you covered!
To get started on our process, just fill in our form below with your address, phone number, and email, and expect a call within 24 hours.
If you have any questions, call us at (855) 835-2544!