Home Buyers Are Now Paying More for Less
When it comes to increasing your property’s value, home improvements are out, bare open spaces are in. Yes, you read that right. According to a CNBC report by Diana Olick, an up-and-coming trend in the real estate industry called “white-boxing” has real estate agents scrambling to empty out their properties in hopes of increasing their value. Apparently, luxury home buyers now prefer stripped down properties—as in homes that have nothing inside but the floor, walls and ceiling—instead of fully furnished ones. Now, while the whole thing might seem crazy at first, the reasoning behind it is quite sound.
Renovations are expensive
Kitchen renovations alone could easily set you back a whopping $80,000, and that’s just if you have an average-sized space. Of course, the bigger the kitchen and the more high-end the materials and appliances you use, the more costly the whole project becomes. Sure, the expense could be worth it if you’re looking to use the property to generate supplemental income or make sure it’s good enough to pass onto the next generation. However, from the perspective of a a buyer who’s looking for a property that they could fully customize, it’s definitely more cost-effective, in terms of both time and money, to just start from scratch instead of demolishing everything first.
Less risk of hidden issues
The last thing you want after paying a huge sum for your new home is to discover that you’d have to spend even more for repairs, right? The problem is that issues with a property’s wiring, plumbing and insulation, for instance, are usually hidden from plain sight, so it’s easy to not notice them until it’s too late. Well, you won’t have to worry about any of that with white-boxed properties. Pretty much everything in them is out for you and your inspector to see, so there’s no way you’ll miss anything that could cause serious problems later on—which another thing that makes them so attractive to luxury home buyers.
But white-boxing is not a one-size-fits-all approach
Before you strip your property down, however, keep in mind that the technique is not only fairly new, but has also only been used in the luxury homes market. There’s really no way to know for sure how it will fare anywhere else this early in the game. At the end of the day, your best bet is still to seek professional advice from a licensed real estate agent.