Should You Consider Buying a Fixer-Upper?

With the available housing inventory at what some consider to be an all-time low, more first-time home buyers are willing to buy a fixer-upper. According to, approximately 60% of home buyers today are quite happy to settle for a home that needs a little TLC. On top of this, 95% of those considering buying fixer-upper think that by completing the various repairs and upgrades, it will increase the value of their new home.

Home Repair TV and YouTube Make a Difference

One of the most common reasons given for the surge in home buyers who are willing to buy a house that needs a little TLC is the surge in home renovation shows on TV, educational videos on YouTube, informational pages on Instagram, Pinterest, and numerous other web sites. These have made it possible for the average homeowner to complete a wide range of tasks that fifteen years ago they would never have dreamed they could achieve. These tutorials make it easier for many to get into a home that meets their budget.

More than fifty percent of those looking to buy a home say they would be happy to buy a home that needed a little work done to it and spend over $20,000 to do so. One of the most common upgrades on the list is a complete makeover for the kitchen, which can cost anywhere from $20,000 to $60,000 and more.

Not a New Trend

Buying fixer-uppers is by no means something new in the housing industry. In a study released by the Joint Center for Housing Studies based at Harvard University, 2018 saw a new high in the amount of money Americans spent on home improvement projects. In numbers it looks like this, homeowners in the U.S. spent approximately $336 billion on renovations and home improvement project in 2018. This is an increase of 7.4% from the previous year where figures were around $313 billion.

One of the most common reasons given for this significant increase is the number of home improvement shows now available on the TV and internet. These shows and tutorials walk you through a project one step at a time, give you ideas for things you’d like to see in your new home, and more. The show people that it is still possible to achieve the American Dream of home ownership in areas where inventories of home in need of a little TLC are higher than any other type of home.

Be Aware of What You Are Buying

It can be very easy to buy a home in need of repairs and major renovations thinking you will be able to handle the many tasks involved in creating your dream home. But just because it looks easy on the TV or your computer doesn’t mean it will be. Most of the people who create the shows and tutorials are experts in their field, which of course means they make it all look easy.

Be sure you know what you are getting into before you invest in a house with more problems than you are capable of handling or you may find yourself spending more than you can afford to pay for the necessary repairs and upgrades.