Profile picture for Highland Farms Road

selling an empty house

We are moving out at the end of the month. Our house will be on the market empty. Is it easy to sell a home once it is empty or still occupied?
  • August 14 2007 - US
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

Be a Good Neighbor. Be respectful and on-topic. No spam or self-promotion! See our Good Neighbor Policy.

 
 

Answers (14)

Profile picture for Luv2cook
I've had many friends tell me that the house they bought was empty. We are doing the same thing on 9/8 - we've rented a house where we want to live and moving out...leaving this empty. We do have an offer on our home (finally) as of today, but if that doesn't go through, we plan to keep it for sale empty for a month or so and then just rent it out.
  • August 14 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

Profile picture for lucydjacobs
A story in our local newspaper said it depends on the market. Because we live in a city where people transfer in and out frequently, it's not unusual to sell an empty home. also, new construction is usually empty and sells well.

If your home is distinctive from its neighbors, then staging is unessential. If it's not distinctive, then you have to stage it, but the story also warned than an out-of-style sofa and recliner will turn off buyers. They want to believe they are trading UP in lifestyle rather than down, and a frumpy home or apartment is usually what they are leaving. They want to see themselves living more stylishly.

We didn't stage, and ours is vacant and extremely clean, closets empty, and the house looks about 1,000 square feet larger than when we were in it with our teen daughter's stuff and our computer etc clutter! We left a kitchen table in the home because the wrought iron bottom matches the light fixture over it, and the wood of the table matches the cabinets and built-in china hutch.

We also have about 1800 square feet of hardwood floors newly refinished and polished that are best left uncovered by rugs to show them off and as such, we are distinctive in our price range. Our interior is better than other homes in the price range, and our garages larger. Great schools. But we have more traffic noise out back that can be heard even through a large wooded lot, the one thing that CAN'T be changed.
  • August 15 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

Profile picture for lucydjacobs
Oh.. one thing I'll warn you about as a heads up...

As soon as you move all of that furniture out, you might need to call a painter or get out the brushes and cans. Walls behind large pieces could be noticeabley darker in color if other walls faded a bit in sunlight. Little knicks and scuffs or peeling paint on baseboards no one saw will stand out as if under a spotlight!
  • August 15 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

Highland Farms,

I think it has to depend upon the prospective buyer. I looked at houses that were vacant and ones that were occupied. I had no trouble looking past everyone's clutter, bad furniture choices and 1970s wallpaper. I ended up buying a vacant house that had dead cockroaches on the floor. (I just really love a challenge which is why I guess I am trying to sell my condo in this market!)
  • August 15 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

Profile picture for Highland Farms Road
Thanks for the input, we will have to paint and clean. I am hiring a carpet cleaner co. to come out because I know the carpet under the couch is cleaner!
  • August 15 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

Profile picture for robin398
Vacant homes don't sell as easily as furnished homes. Vacant homes are not well lit, they expose any flaws the house might have. The emptiness gives off a negative vibe. When realtors show a home or have an open house with a furnished home, they turn on every single light so that the home conveys a warm glow and also the potential buyer might develop an emotional attachment to it. If it is empty, try to rent out some furniture so that the buyer can place their valuables and see how they can fit their life into the house.
  • August 15 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

Profile picture for Alan May
Vacant homes rarely show better than furnished homes. Contrary to what you might think, an empty room usually looks smaller than a proportionately furnished room. With no furniture, viewers don't have any "scale" to compare to, and the room feels small.
... as robin pointed out, with the furnishings gone, buyers only have walls, floors, windows, etc.. .to focus on, and they can see every flaw, scratch, cracked window, ugly ceiling lamp...
... if there's any possiblity, I'd try to leave the property furnished while for sale. It will pay off in the long run.
  • August 15 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

Profile picture for Mummy1
All those shows on HGTV and agents say that a vacant home won't sell as fast as a staged home, but our house is staged and in impeccable condition - and not only has a small backyard but also backs to a protected green belt. The house down the street was empty, had a paint job that showed the three different colors the room had once been, paint was all over the baseboards (no kidding the bachelors that lived there never heard of taping off), the stove was sitting well below the countertops, and it backs to a dumpy house with chickens and roosters. It also has no backyard, just a small patio (the size of our deck) that runs up against the fence. Long story short, they got an offer from the same people who looked at our house. Our prices were only different by $6,000. And here we still sit. I'm not bitter or anything . . . =) My faith in what "they" say sells has been shaken.
  • August 15 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

I should also note that Craig Schiller wrote an excellent blog post on this subject that was part of this week's carnival of real estate - www.carnivalofrealestate.com

Here's the article - http://realestaging.blogspot.com/2007/08/are-vacant-homes-black-holes-that-suck.html

And here's this week's carnival - http://www.realtythoughts.com/?p=327
  • August 15 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

Truthfully, I have had more buyers that prefer to go into vacant houses. I understand the psychhology of staging (people feel at home, can picture themselves there, etc.), but staging seems to work better with the higher priced homes out here.
  • August 15 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

Profile picture for lucydjacobs
If my home were identical to others for sale in a subdivision, I also would have staged our home.

We have nifty details - oversize fireplace, architectural windows, French doors, built-in china closet, not a scrap of carpet in the whole place (warm climate, who needs it?) Closet lights turn on automatically when the door opens, so no problem with darkness messing up a home tour. Something nifty to see in each room.

We are just 1800 sq. feet, so as Marci noted, the house does not seem echo'ing and commercial-bland without staging, whereas with a large home, the place might seem cold and hollow-sounding without staging.

If only we could move the highway behind the wooded lot behind our home......
  • August 15 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

Lucy, that would be "easy freeway access" in our lingo. :)
  • August 15 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

Profile picture for lucydjacobs
Thanks, Marci! I should use it :)

The highway through the woods is an excellent neighbor. Never has a car pulled over or its driver traipsed over the small creek through the woods and complained that my dog was barking too loud, which would happen if we had real neighbors behind those woods.

I should market the home to Labrador and annoying yippie-dog owners. I have one of each of that barking variety.
  • August 16 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.

Profile picture for Lins03
I brought the place empty and now it's for sale and will be empty and move in ready for a new owner.
  • August 17 2007
  • 0Yes

  • Report a Problem

    Please enter a valid email address.

    Content flagged

    We will review this content. Thanks for helping make the site more useful to everyone. To learn more, read Zillow's Good Neighbor Policy.

    We're sorry. This service is temporarily unavailable. Please come back later and try again.