Do Aging Appliances Mean a Lower Asking Price?

June 21, 2019

Knowing the lifespan of appliances and home fixtures can help home buyers get a realistic look at  replacements or repairs they may need to make. It can also be a point of negotiations between a buyer and seller: If the buyer expects that an aging appliance will need to be replaced soon, they may want that factored into their offer.

Some of the priciest components of a house for replacements or repairs tend to be the roof, electrical, plumbing, furnace, and air conditioning systems.

However, home sellers who know they have an aging appliance in the home may not want to be too preemptive in decreasing their sales price at the onset, particularly if the home is in otherwise good condition and comparable to other similar properties.

“Buyers almost always look for concessions to be made during the due diligence period, based on the inspection report, regardless of whether the property was listed lower due to an aging roof or air conditioning unit,” attorney Kara Stachel with Satchel Law Planning, a law firm and title company in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., told U.S. News & World Report. “As such, listing the property at a lower price could do the seller a disservice if the buyer then requests repair credits in spite of the lower listing price.”

Listing the property with a higher initial price gives the buyer and seller wiggle room to negotiate repair credits, she adds.

As for home buyers, they certainly shouldn’t be shy about negotiating a lower price if they spot aging appliances that will need to be repaired. “The quickest way a buyer can assess if the asking price reflects the home’s condition is to ask the buyer’s broker to compare its price with the past sales in the immediate vicinity,” says Mihal Gartenberg, a real estate professional with Warburg Realty in New York City. “So, if a kitchen is old and needs replacing, but the home is the same price as a neighboring home that is move-in ready, the asking price should absolutely be negotiated down.”

View this chart to find the average lifespan of household items. 

How Long Can You Expect Your Roof or Fridge to Last?” U.S. News & World Report (May 24, 2019)