In today’s blog, we are going to be discussing: can you sell a house with old wiring in the Appleton, Wisconsin or any of the surrounding Fox Cities? And the answer is yes, you can sell a house with old wiring, but you might face some sort of repercussions when the home inspector comes in and inspects the property. So the real question is, what can you do about selling a house with the old property?
The First Step in Selling a House With Old Wiring
The first thing that you should take into consideration is the electrical panel or old fuse box. Is that updated to a new breaker box? Meaning, instead of having the old fuses down in the basement or in the electrical panel area, you have a new updated breaker panel (100 or 200 AMP) with breakers that will pop on or off if something is tripped. So that’s the first thing that you need to be aware of when selling a house with old wiring.
Now what do you do if you have an old fuse box? Well, 90% of mortgage lenders will not lend on a house with an old fuse box, so what I would recommend doing is talking with a local electrician and getting a price estimate and quote for replacing that panel to a new updated breaker panel, and that will solve that issue. Another issue would be obtaining Insurance on the property with an old fuse box. If you cannot obtain insurance on the property, then a loan will not be funded, and that will be a requirement from the mortgage lender if they are obtaining a loan, which in most cases, 95% of home buyers are. They aren’t paying cash for the property.
What About Knob & Tube Wiring?
Another thing you need to be aware of is, is there old knob-and-tube wiring in the house? Now you might be asking yourself, “What is knob-and-tube wiring?” Knob-and-tube wiring is an old style wiring system that was used in the early to mid 1900s, where wires are connected to this little ceramic tube-like structure. It’s a circular cylinder that’s all white. And if you’re in old style houses, it is extremely common, and you will see it typically in basements, in attic spaces, and behind walls going to all the other electrical items in the house. If you’re aware of knob-and-tube wiring in your house, you need to disclose that, and that will need to be updated or gotten rid of, and new wiring will need to be put in place.
Again, this is a very expensive task to be completed, so speak with a local electrician, get bids for the work, and do things accordingly in that regard. With knob and tube wiring, typically how it goes is, you just need to replace the wiring that is visible, so anything behind the walls, underneath insulation, you would not need to replace that. But if it is visible … So in the basement ceiling, in the attic space, that needs to be replaced or taken out, and new wiring needs to be put in its place.
In some extreme cases people may demand that all wiring be updated which means running new wiring throughout the entire property which is a $9,000-$13,000 job if you are not opening up drywall.
What If My Outlets Aren’t Updated?
Going further into selling a house with old wiring, what type of outlets are in the house? Are they the old two-prong outlets or are they the updated, modernized, three-prong outlets with a ground receptacle? Now, even though the outlets show that they have three prongs, in most homes built prior to 1950, those outlets are not technically grounded, which means they are not up to the current electrical code and they will not be in compliance when a home inspector comes through and inspects the property, which can result in a higher cost to you, the homeowner, and further issues delaying the sale of your property. So again, this just needs to be watched out for. I would recommend having an electrician come in. I know electricians are expensive, but this might be something that you should be aware of.
We May Be the Next Best Option…
Now, what are your options when selling the property if you do not have the funds to repair the old wiring, or you’re just not wanting a home inspector to come through and look at all the issues that might be present? Option number one would be to give a buyer credit at closing to repair the electrical themselves. In most cases, buyers get nervous, and they’re scared, and the lenders will not lend with a house on old wiring, so you just need to think about that prior to selling.
And then option number two, which may not be the best option for you, but it’s still there, is to sell the house to a We Buy Houses company like ourselves. We’ll pay cash for the property. We won’t do any inspections or testing, and we’ll replace or repair any damage or old electrical items that remain in the property upon us purchasing it. Because we don’t do any inspections and there’s no banks involved, we can typically close the house without any sort of issue. We obtain homeowners insurance on it without any sort of issue because we are renovating the property and not using it as a primary residence.
So if you’re interested in receiving a cash offer for your property, give us a call on our office line, which is (920) 215-4201, or feel free to fill out the form down below and we will reach out to you just as soon as we can. Thanks so much, and enjoy your day.