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November 10, 2013 / patrickbelhon

Top Factors That Can Affect Your San Diego Home’s Resale Value

Factors That Can Affect Home Resale ValueSan Diego is a large and diverse geographic area with more than 100 different neighborhoods. Prices for waterfront homes in La Jolla or Torrey Pines can easily reach seven figures, while more moderately priced homes can be found in communities in Mount Hope or Sherman Heights. Within each San Diego neighborhood, home resale values vary depending on size, appearance, and the different features inside and outside of the home.

Real estate values boil down to a function of supply and demand. Interest rates, income levels and consumer confidence all play a role in determining San Diego home sale prices. If you are looking to buy or sell a home in San Diego, the resale value can be affected either positively or negatively by any number of factors.


You can add another room, attach a deck, or knock down an inner wall, but unless you have a mobile home or are prepared to spend a ton of money, you can not move a house. Location can either work for you or against you in helping to determine the resale value of your San Diego home. Living across the street from the Pacific Ocean will boost the value of your home, while living next to the freeway or in the flight path of the airport will detract from your home’s value.

If a busy road runs behind your house, you can not stop the traffic, but you can take steps to mitigate the noise. You might want to consider some dense landscaping to hide the view and add some sound-proofing materials to keep your home quiet when the doors and windows are closed.

Fit with nearby houses

When people are shopping for a house in a particular neighborhood or area of San Diego, they usually do not want to live in a house that looks like a space ship or seems out-of-place with the other homes on the same street. You do not want to have a 5,000 square foot house in a neighborhood where all of the homes are about 2,000 square feet. It is always better to be the lower-priced home in a higher-priced community of like homes.

“For Sale” signs in your neighborhood

Too many “For Sale” signs and too many homes that have gone into foreclosure will definitely drive down the resale value of your home. Not only does it give a prospective buyer many choices, but it also sends a negative message that the neighborhood may be in decline. People want a stable neighborhood and do not want new neighbors moving in and out all of the time. You should also be wary of communities where there are a lot of single-family homes that are not lived-in by the owners. Homes that are rented are usually not cared after as well as those that are owner-occupied and that can bring down property values of neighboring homes.

Curb appeal

First impressions matter as much in real estate as they do on a blind date. Everyone forms an opinion of a home when they first drive up to the property. If your home is freshly painted, trees are trimmed, and you have some colorful flowers in the front, your house will have good curb appeal. On the other hand, if shingles are peeling off the roof, your walls look dirty and your lawn is a shade somewhere between brown and yellow, that makes a bad impression.

Even if the inside of your home is spectacular, many people will just keep on driving because they will get the impression that the owner does not maintain the house. If the outside is spectacular, prospective buyers will anxiously look forward to viewing the home. Appearance can affect the value of a house in either a positive or negative way.

Shape and size of your lot

Ideally, it is better for your house to be set-back further, rather than closer to the road – especially if you live on a busy street. If a home is on a triangular lot that is narrow in the front and wider in the back that can detract from resale value. Zero lot-line homes mean that your house is built only a few feet from your neighbors, another less desirable situation for home value. Homes built on large, rectangular-shaped lots, with a nice front yard and a generous back yard are more appealing to buyers and can command a higher resale price.

Number of bedrooms

Resale value can be higher if you have a home that appeals to the most people. A three or four-bedroom home hits thatsweet spot. Families, couples and singles are all prospective buyers of a 3-4 bedroom home. Such a home will sell for much more than a 1-2 bedroom home in the same neighborhood. Homes with 6-7 bedrooms do not add that much extra resale value as there is a limited market for those who might need all of those bedrooms.

The Kitchen

The kitchen is one of the chief selling points of any home. People spend a lot of time in the kitchen and they form impressions quickly about the kitchen. If you have a tiny or outdated kitchen that will almost always evoke some odd facial expressions or negative comments when the house is shown. On the other hand, a spacious kitchen with brand new appliances will often be the decisive factor in whether or not you get a good offer on your home.

Closet space

Walk-in closets are always one of the first things a real estate agent points out when showing a house. You can never have enough closet space. Houses get a few points taken away if they have small closets. If you have other storage space, like a basement or attic, that can help compensate for the limited size of your closets.

The Garage

A two-car garage is just right in most San Diego neighborhoods. As a basic rule, you want to have the same-sized garage as the other houses around your neighborhood. If you live in a middle-class neighborhood with mostly two-car garage homes, having a one-car garage or no garage at all can hurt the value of your home. If you live in a neighborhood filled with million dollar homes, a three or four-car garage may be standard. Anything less can devalue your home’s resale value.


It can get a little tricky when it comes to upgrades to your home. If, when your home was built, you decided to go all out and get the crown molding, imported tile floors and other builder upgrades, that may or may not add value to your home when compared to other similarly-sized homes in your community. Some people like built in bookshelves or recessed lighting in every room and others do not place extra value on these expensive upgrades. Usually, if your house is the same model as your neighbors, but yours has $50,000 in upgrades, you will only get a small premium on the resale value of your home over theirs.


Like upgrades, renovations can have either a positive or negative effect on the resale price of a home. They might have no effect at all. If you do a renovation, you must be sure it is done professionally and does not look like a weekend job done by an amateur handyman. While everyone who does a renovation thinks that they are enhancing their home, sometimes changing from carpeted floors to hardwood is not what a buyer wants. Certain renovations like updating an old bathroom or kitchen add more value than other renovations like doing a complete makeover of a guest bedroom.


You can decorate your home any way you want when you are living there, but customization can cost you money when you get ready to sell your house. The $1,000 you paid to have a mural painted on your daughter’s bedroom wall or the psychedelic color scheme in your den will probably not appeal as much to buyers as it does to you. It is best to keep neutral tones and not build quirky things that could be viewed negatively by prospective buyers.

Energy costs

If you can differentiate your property from other similar properties by having a more energy-efficient house, that can be a major selling point and add substantially to the resale price. One question many buyers often ask is how much is the monthly electric bill? If you can show them the last six months of electric bills were all less than $200, when the buyer knows that the average monthly cost for San Diego homes of a similar square footage is $400 that will impress them more than you might think. Point out that you have an on-demand water heater or just installed a high-efficiency air conditioning system. Even on million dollar homes, people like to save money when they can.

Patrick-Belhon-AgentEverything about your home can either negatively or positively influence the resale value of your house. Some things like the location or the size of your home can not be changed, but other things, like curb appeal or the appliances, can. Talking to a real estate professional can help you make the best decisions on preparing your home for resale and attracting the highest bids for your property.

Article Copyright ©2013 – All Rights Reserved Patrick Belhon (patricksellshomes@gmail(dot)com)



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