How to sell a grotty house and where do I start?
November 15, 2011 3:27 AM Subscribe
My house is a mess - one of the reasons for selling - and I have no money. Where the hell do I start?
posted by b33j to home & garden (40 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
11 months into my marriage separation, and I have decided to sell the family home (with permission from the ex). But there's problems.
The yard is a mess. I've not been able to keep up with it. For a year before I moved back, my (layabout) son lived here alone, and a jungle grew. Every time I cut something back, it grows back twice as fast with three weedy companions. It's not a good jungle. It badly needs repainting. The house has peeling paint on the outside. Lead paint. Estimates on repainting a similar house in the same area (my brother's) with same problem are about $30 000. The gutters are holey. They're basically pointless. I suppose it would cost a good $5-10k to replace them. I have a dangerous deck, and cracked retaining wall. Fixing this, I suppose $10k. Inside the kitchen is falling apart, the wood floors need refinishing, the paint work throughout the house is old. The bathtub when we bought it had been repainted and is flaking and icky.
All that said, I am no handy woman AND I have no money. Oh, I have about enough to live on, barely (one of the reasons I'm moving - to be closer to work opportunities). So, knowing AskMe's habit of suggesting cleaning and painting a house for sale, I thought I'd point out that this is not an option. My brother sold a little cottage that he had planned to renovate and the real estate agent advised him at the time, 'don't bother doing anything, it won't increase the price enough to make it worth your while.' I'm working under that theory.
Next problem, two of the four bedrooms have shit from the ex and the kids stored. The garage is filled with crap. The ex has a tiny place and no room. One kid lives with me and will probably move with me. The other with him.
Next problem, I will need to move out. I know where I want to move to, and there's enough properties for rent, but I'll want a small space and can't take all this crap, and how do I move and sell at the same time if I have no money?
Next problem, I work from home. Once I move, I can work from the campus, but I really don't love the idea of people walking through my crappy house while I'm in it. Both for the interruption of work, and because the house is so crap.
Also, dealing with depression as well. And a useless ex. I can tell him to do stuff, but he won't. Oh also, I have to rely on public transport - no car / no license - long boring story.
More details - I think the house is probably worth about $250k, we owe $125k. I don't have a stable income - I'm self employed so possibly would find it difficult to get loans. I certainly can't afford to pay them back. I may be getting a tax cheque in the next couple of months for $5k. The ex is over-extended financially already (and made me so by running up $5k on my credit card which he is paying back slowly).
Where do I start? Do I ring real estate agents? How do I do this? Can you give me a list of things to do?
Please keep in mind this is Australia (eg can't get divorced unless separated one year, possibly different real estate rules).