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Thursday, July 22

Selling One of the Rental Properties, Part 2

I've never sold a house, so when I decided to do so I figured I would need to invest a little sweat equity into getting it ready to sell. When I turn over a tenant I always fix everything that's broken, clean the carpets, touch up the paint and make it look presentable. But to sell a house, I'm finding there's much more to do.

  • Even though the house is just 4 years old, the last tenants ruined the carpet. I pulled up the old carpet and will have Lowe's install new. Installing carpet isn't a task I'm ready to tackle.
  • Lowe's was able to match the paint on the walls closely so I am touching up rather than repainting.
  • Me and a friend spent a Saturday detail cleaning. By "detail" I mean we scrubbed the oven, baseboards, tile grout, the ceiling fans and everything else that didn't look new.
  • My partner chipped in and did a little landscaping.
My goal is to have the house listed for sale before August 15th. It's been vacant since June 21st, so I'll easily have three months of carrying costs. Fortunately I am keeping the entire $1,100 deposit from the tenants which will go a long way towards new carpet.

I know it's a little unconventional, but my top priority is selling this house fast rather than waiting for the best offer. I won't tell my agent that (!), but I need to move on and focus on my profitable properties. If that means selling it for $10,000 less than I'd like but doing so in 60 days or less, well, so be it. It's time to move on.

By the way, this is off topic, but I'm so proud of my latest feat: I installed my first kitchen faucet. As usual, nothing is ever as easy as it should be when I do it myself, but I saved a lot of cash by not hiring a plumber. This represents a big "x" on my to-do list as I'd been procrastinating on this for almost 6 weeks and my tenant was a little upset about the problems he was having. I spent about 3 hours on this project - much longer than it should take, but a plumber would have charged $100 so my time was valued at $33 per hour. I'm good with that.

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