Florida offers residents great year-round weather, warm sunshine, and picturesque beaches. But as everyone knows, the downside to living in Florida are hurricanes, thunderstorms, and of course, the risk of flooding.
If you own a home affected by flood damage, it’s hard to know what to do next if you’re hoping to sell the place. Can you even sell a flooded house? What repairs should you do beforehand? Are there any laws about selling a home that was flooded in Florida?
Below is a guide to selling a flooded house in Gainesville, Florida, to hopefully help you navigate this stressful time.
Can You Sell a Flooded House in Florida?
Have you heard of Murphy’s law? “Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.” Such may be the case for yourself – maybe you were thinking about listing your house, and all of a sudden, a strong spring storm blows through the area and brings with it historical flooding. Or maybe your home recently was flooded and ruined a lot of your personal belongings, which made you reconsider living there in the first place. Whatever the rationale might be for you to want or need to sell your flooded house in Florida, in all honesty, you’re in a bit of a bind.
In general, selling a home can be challenging but add in the fact that you’re trying to sell a flooded house; well, that’s definitely not going to be an easy sale. But before you get too discouraged, let’s look at what you can do to make this home sale possible, what repairs you should consider doing, and if you should think about selling to a nontraditional buyer instead.
Should You Repair a Flooded House Before Selling?
If your property has flooded and you know ultimately you’d like to sell, the biggest decision you need to make is how deep you’ll want to get into the renovations and repair. As well as how much money you feel comfortable sinking into the project before seeking out a buyer. In cases such as this, it’s important to work with a real estate professional that has experience with buying and selling flooded houses.
When it comes to figuring out what repairs to make before selling, of course, there are necessary flood repairs that you will need to make prior to listing, and there may be some major repairs worth considering too. Let’s take a look at both.
Minor and Essential Repairs
A flood or other factors like faulty plumbing, a broken pipe, and others can cause severe water damage problems that require instant repairs. Damage caused by flooding can destroy your carpets, furniture, textiles, wood surfaces, and even the foundation of your home. If you’re about to invest in flood repairs in order to make your property sellable and increase your home value, there are a few things to consider.
To repair flood damage, you’ll want to start with an inspection and look into your flood insurance claims. Repairing flood-damaged houses oftentimes can be covered by your insurance, and it’s worth contacting your insurance provider as soon as you notice an issue.
For homeowners looking to sell a flooded house in Florida, it’s important to address these minor but essential repairs:
- Electrical – schedule an inspection with an electrician to verify whether the place is safe to occupy and if it’s necessary to make changes.
- Plumbing– plumbing systems tend to get overlooked because they’re underground, but it wouldn’t hurt to hire a plumber to check for clogged drains, damaged exposed pipes, and underground plumbing issues.
- Furniture and Flooring– It’s best to replace any flooring, carpets, and rugs that suffered a flood as the water damage may continue to pose a threat even when it’s not visible. Sometimes it is possible to restore your carpets or furniture using professional services. Also, if you notice that your mattresses or furniture has been contaminated, it is advised to get rid of them and purchase new ones.
- Walls– another area of the home that is greatly affected by water damage are the walls. Unfortunately, they can become the perfect breeding ground for mold and lead to your walls peeling, swelling up, and eventually cause significant problems.
- Mold– one of the most essential repairs to address after a flood or water damage is mold issues. Mold can drastically affect your property value but can also cause serious threats to your health and others. Mold from flood damage usually goes hand-in-hand as it thrives in moist and damp places. Mold in a house can grow on wood, paper, fabric, plastic, and glass. This can be a big deal-breaker for an interested home buyer, so make sure to tackle any mold problems by hiring a professional and get a mold remediation certificate.
Major Repairs Worth Considering
Besides taking on minor and essential repairs, there are other major renovations worth considering. The cost of major repairs will vary depending on the size of your Florida home and the level of damage. Below are what some major repairs may cost and the timeframe to complete them.
|Type of Repair /Replace
|Average Timeframe to Complete*
|2-3 days weather permitting
|$6-$10 per sqft
|A few days, depending on the extent of damage and weather conditions.
|A few days, depending on the size of your home and weather conditions.
*These average time frames don’t include how long the company may be booked out and how long materials will take to be delivered.
Besides looking at major repairs, it wouldn’t hurt to look into renovations to increase the value of your home. Improving your Gainesville house doesn’t have to be a costly endeavor. You can invest a small amount of money into fixing your flooded home, buying new furniture, and turning it into an area that is safe to live in, fresh, and inviting for new buyers. But depending on how far you go down that rabbit hole, remodeling a house can be costly and time-consuming if you’re not careful. For instance, the average cost of renovating a house can be somewhere between $10,000 and $60,000, of course, depending on the size of the home and the remodeling project.
Some of the redecorating and remodeling projects you might need to invest in are:
- Bathroom Upgrades
- Kitchen Upgrades
- Cabinet Installation
- Countertop Improvements
- Fixtures and Hardware Upgrades
When it comes to improving your house to sell, make sure that you pay attention to the smaller details. For example, repaint the walls with a neutral color once they’ve been restored after the flood. Also, think about staging your house with small decor items and wall art to help prospective buyers see the potential.
Florida Laws Around Selling a Flooded House
Once you make an effort to repair all the damage, complete some major repairs, and consider renovations, you’ll want to keep in mind there may be laws about selling a flooded house. One of the biggest ones you’ll want to be concerned about and could cause issues for your home sale is disclosures.
When it comes to selling a house, certain things must be disclosed to the prospective buyer, including:
- Previous or current issues with the home’s structure or systems
- Major repair work completed on the house
- Health hazards such as lead paint or asbestos
- Any permanent defects affecting the property’s structure or systems, like plumbing, electrical, or HVAC
- Any construction completed on the property and whether or not permits were pulled
- Flood danger to the property
Typically when a buyer hears flood damage, that’s usually a deal-breaker. However, Florida law currently doesn’t require sellers to disclose whether a home has suffered flood damage or not. So the best course of action is to seek legal advice to verify this information. Furthermore, you’ll want to ask if legal ramifications can still arise if you do not disclose this detail to the new homeowner.
How to Sell a Flooded House in Florida
When it comes to selling a flooded house in Florida, you do have a few options. You could sell your home as-is and forgo all the extra repairs, and improvements insurance won’t cover. You would be able to sell your house quicker this way since you wouldn’t have to wait around for all the work to be done before listing.
This could be accomplished a few different ways by hiring a real estate agent or selling by owner. However, both options involve agent commissions and no guarantee of how long the process will take – plus, you may experience issues finding a buyer.
Another option that you have when selling a flooded house in Florida is finding a cash buyer. Experienced cash home buyers in Gainesville are usually investors who are ready to make a free no-obligation cash offer for your home. However, to find a reputable and reliable We Buy Houses Florida buyer is no easy task, but once you do, you’ll find that the wait was worth it.
Cash homebuyers don’t rely on lenders or financial backing by other institutions or people. That means they don’t get bogged down with inspections, contingencies, financing issues, and bank approval. For you as the seller, this means a quicker home sale process, a more straightforward sale, the ability to sell a house that needs repairs as-is, and no realtor commissions.
If you’re trying to figure out how to sell a flooded house in Gainesville and you fear that the mission may be impossible, fear not. In this article, we’ve shared some helpful tips and useful information regarding the sale of a home that’s been damaged by a flood. Water damage is a serious concern that can cause significant damage, but as a home seller, you can still take action by restoring your property and hopefully attract buyers. If working with a cash home buyer sounds like a better solution, contact Sell Your Gainesville Home Today. They would be happy to explain their home buying process, share more information about their company, or simply make you a cash offer for your flooded home.