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Wet Basements and Their Effect on House Value
July 25th, 2014 2:35 PM

An Non-watered Down Look At The Facts

If you’re trying to sell your home, real estate brokers, real estate appraisers and other professionals know that a wet basement can prevent a flood of offers and make the price you can command take a cold dip. In this article, let’s take a quick look at reliable sources of information about wet basement effect on house value (soggy, we’re afraid). We’ll consider local and national opinions, research data and (in our next edition—stay tuned), present valuable options to help shore up and prevent basement leaks and seepage from raining on your home value parade.

Let’s start close to home in the Chicago area with a reference to
The Prevalence and Cost of Urban Flooding, a breakthrough study conducted and updated by the Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) in May of 2014. This detailed study revealed that values are greatly affected by water in the basement and not just in flood plains. The study reports that communities across the Great Lakes region are suffering from the impacts of urban flooding caused by moderate and heavy rain running off roofs, roads, and parking lots. The economic and social consequences can be considerable: experts estimate that "wet basements decrease property values by 10-25 percent.”

On a national scale, reporter Tim Snyder, a specialist in sustainability and author of My Home Science ( , quotes a real estate agent from Newtown, Connecticut, who states: “Any kind of water issue will make people turn and run — even if it’s just a little puddle off in the corner. ” This agent recommends being proactive about making wet basement repairs – or you might risk losing thousands of dollars when it’s time to sell your house.

“It’s important to make the repairs as soon as possible,” she counsels. “Not only will you be able to live in a drier home until you close, but you’re likely to save on the cost of the repair, too. The last thing you want is to be negotiating with a waterproofing company when you’re under pressure to sell your house.”

The New York Times online edition (http: concurs. The Times quoted realtors and homeowners nationally who didn’t water down their estimates of damage to home value due to basement seepage. “Anytime there is water penetration—even if only under extreme circumstances—it will affect property value, said Robert Lindsay, a real estate agent in the East who has been selling houses for 35 years. “This is the hottest hot button there is for buyers,” he concluded.

So what can you do protect your basement, your investment and the increase potential for more return when you sell? Check out our next article offering some real and realistic advice on water protection “down below.” You should find it uplifting.

In today's turbulent real estate markets, property owners, property investors, financial planners, lenders and portfolio and asset managers turn to Michael Hobbs & PahRoo Appraisal & Consultancy for prompt, trustworthy guidance and keen valuation insight into real estate appraisal, both commercial and residential, estate appraisal, real estate valuation, and business consulting designed to create transformational growth and success. Appraise our ability to meet and exceed your needs at

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Posted by Michael Hobbs on July 25th, 2014 2:35 PMPost a Comment

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