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Selling with a knackered kitchen - should we replace it?

(30 Posts)
Flugelpip Tue 16-Aug-16 21:43:09

We want to put our house on the market in March/April having decided we want to move sooner rather than later for family reasons. Our kitchen is in dire need of being replaced. It's an ancient Magnet one with several broken cupboard doors, missing drawers and a few random gaps that I've never been able to understand (just a hole where there should be a base cupboard - I stash a storage trolley thing in it at the moment). I think any buyer would want to do a kitchen extension rather than a straight replacement as it's a smallish galley kitchen leading to a large conservatory and the obvious thing is to knock down the conservatory and replace it with an eat-in kitchen. I've always been bitterly ashamed of the kitchen but we have redone the rest of the house and have just run out of time, money and energy to do the kitchen itself. It's a great family house overlooking a park in a very popular bit of London, in the catchment area for a very over-subscribed state school. Should we put in the cheapest new kitchen we can, knowing that it will get ripped out by the new buyers? Put it on the market as is? Try to make the existing kitchen look better although God knows how?Any suggestions/thoughts?

concertplayer Tue 16-Aug-16 22:57:28

I think others may know more than me. But i will try to help.
Basically who are you aiming to sell to? It sounds like a family and if so
a family with 3 kids will not relish the inconvenience of being without a
kitchen let alone the annoyance of the work as soon as they move in.
So you need to make it workable. I mean can they cook wash dishes
and clothes and refridgerate at the moment? We are looking probably
at 2 clothes washes minimum per day.
You can easily get new kitchen doors/fronts and replacement drawers.
You may also be able to get a pull out storage thing to fill the gap.
For a decent but cheap new kitchen Ikea would fit the bill

MoonlightandMusic Tue 16-Aug-16 23:02:00

If you've done up the rest of the house, you probably don't want a massive disconnect between that and the kitchen - would you be able to maybe just upgrade the doors and add in the missing pieces from, say IKEA or, if Magnet do similar, take advantage of their summer sale for this instead?

EssentialHummus Tue 16-Aug-16 23:03:13

I'd replace kitchen unit door fronts with something neat and modern, but that's it.

GiddyOnZackHunt Tue 16-Aug-16 23:06:56

I can't get past 2 clothes washes minimum per day. Really? Good Lord.

Anyway. Could you get one of those kitchen doctor type people in to do a basic refresh?

concertplayer Tue 16-Aug-16 23:15:57

Those kitchen doctor types can be expensive. Try one by all means but we
found it too pricey. We just measured the doors, sussed out what hinges
we needed ie soft close, bought them at B &q and got our handyman to
fit them. Dunno about the pull out thing though.

RedLarvaYellowLarva Tue 16-Aug-16 23:18:12

If I was buying, I'd expect the bad kitchen reflected in the price, and prefer to put my own in. To my taste, and brand spanking new. So I vote do not replace.

Believeitornot Wed 17-Aug-16 08:08:22

I would do the bare minimum and not replace. Fix the doors and drawers and leave the random gaps - they're in use so you can make it presentable.

We moved 6 months ago, we have a young family, and the house needs a facelift plus a new kitchen. It is liveable so we don't mind.

I was put off buying a house which didn't require work as it would never have quite been to my taste and I would have felt we were wasting ££ ripping out something relatively new. As it stands, I can quite happily now rip out the kitchen and bathroom guilt free as they're 15-20 years old!

Woopsiedaisy Wed 17-Aug-16 08:38:00

Totally agree with the idea of not replacing.

The people who sold me this house replaced the Kitchen and Bathrooms before selling and I hate them all as they are so old fashioned & frumpy. I convinced myself I would replace them in time but now realise I would never have the headroom in the value to do that.

When I spoke to my EA recently about replacement and adding a wood burner he told me those things would probably improve speed of sale but not value.

I am guessing your house will sell based on location, so I would just titivate if necessary.

LittleBearPad Wed 17-Aug-16 08:42:56

Fix broken things but don't replace. It's a waste of money.

sparechange Wed 17-Aug-16 08:43:23

Don't replace it.
Take some advice from your agent, but I sold a very similar house a couple of years ago - desirable catchment, family area of London, tired kitchen but the rest of the house was done to a good standard

My buyer ended up putting a huge extension on the back, taking up a big chunk of the garden. I'd never have done anything like that, but it is what they wanted and would have done regardless of how nice or not the kitchen was.

My agent said buyers love to be able to 'add value' so having a bit of a job to do appeals to a lot of buyers, especially when it is something individual like a kitchen.

CookieDoughKid Wed 17-Aug-16 08:43:32

Don't replace unless you are willing to spend upwards £20k+ on a wow up to date now kitchen. Otherwise I'll be inwardly adding the cost of a new kitchen if your new one wasn't nice enough.

SnakeWitch Wed 17-Aug-16 08:45:31

I think don't replace, just make sure it's functional and reflect in the price. The kitchen in my new house is knackered and needs replacing and I'm quite happy about that because we can choose everything and tailor it to us.

I viewed a house with a brand new kitchen and it was odd. It was beautiful but DH and i agreed it would be like living in someone else's house as they'd recently picked it all and personalised it to them. I certainly couldn't justify ripping it out!

wowfudge Wed 17-Aug-16 08:46:42

I wouldn't bother, but get anything that needs it fixed. A kitchen has to fit with the rest of the house so just make what is there more presentable and your buyers can get their dream kitchen once they've moved in. You're unlikely to recoup the cost of putting in a new kitchen and a cheap one if you don't have the energy to do the things which don't make it look cheap could be worse than what you have now. Just make sure that the house is priced accordingly. And make sure the kitchen is cleaned from top to bottom and uncluttered.

senua Wed 17-Aug-16 08:50:50

I remember many moons ago when house prices were crazy and makeovers were popular (the era of Changing Rooms etc). It got to the stage where people were desperate for doer-uppers and they quite often ended up paying more for the house + makeover than they would have done for a ready-done house.
Flip your stance. Your kitchen is not a bad thing. It is a good thing, it is a way for your canny (flatter them) buyers to 'add value', they are lucky to find a house like yours, there aren't many left, etc, etc.

Helloooomeee Wed 17-Aug-16 08:51:14

My estate agent friend always advises not to replace kitchens and bathrooms but to reflect the condition in the price. What works for one person is not likely to be to everyone's taste/requirements and will often be replaced again regardless of condition.

OnePlanOnHouzz Wed 17-Aug-16 08:52:41

Don't replace it - but get a fab design done with prints on A3 paper to show what it could be ! As most people like to personalise a kitchen anyway - as long as it's written in your details that the price reflects that it will need a new kitchen ! You will be fine !!

Good luck with the move !! smile

foursillybeans Wed 17-Aug-16 08:58:43

I've bought a few family houses now and I generally dismiss houses that have just had a kitchen refit. I want to chose my own and have exactly what I want. I won't buy and rip out a brand new kitchen though as it is not good for our environment and it's wasteful so I would most likely just dismiss the house. I don't think one area of work would put people off buying your house.

Cathaka15 Wed 17-Aug-16 09:01:56

You can buy these kitchen door stickers now that actually look quiet nice. As long things are not hanging down and dirty looking. You will be fine. I think too many things on work tops is not a good idea either. Just some basic accessorise to compliment the color scheme in the house and you are good to go.

MiaowTheCat Wed 17-Aug-16 09:06:24

I'd get the knackered doors fixed, freshen it up but not replace it.

I'd rather buy a house with an officially knackered kitchen and have to replace it, than a "liveable" kitchen I feel obliged to cope with for bloody years and years (8 years of beige melamine hell speaking before we had the spare funds to justify doing ours).

Think kitchens are such a personal thing, especially if it's looking likely that people will want to extend and do it all as a big project that I wouldn't waste the time and money putting one in.

PurpleDaisies Wed 17-Aug-16 09:09:17

We're buying a house where the kitchen is much worse than the rest of the house. It's fine because we're budgeting for a replacement that is to our taste rather than basic sort of thing you'd probably have to put in for a quick fix.

Scribblegirl Wed 17-Aug-16 09:26:01

Taking OnePlan's idea a little further, would you be able to get planning permission for a kitchen extension? Rather than spending the money on the kitchen, spend it on an architect to draw it up and get the plans approved. That way you can sell the house with pre-approved planning for the new kitchen, which would allow you to sell them the concept/potential, without wasting money on a new kitchen that'll almost certainly be ripped out?

Also I think having the PP would increase the value of the house more than a new cheapo kitchen, but that's just my perspective as a buyer!

PurpleDaisies Wed 17-Aug-16 09:30:09

Also I think having the PP would increase the value of the house more than a new cheapo kitchen, but that's just my perspective as a buyer!
Interesting-I think getting planning permission would be a waste of money. I guess you can't please everyone grin

I agree not to bother with a cheapo kitchen.

Popskipiekin Wed 17-Aug-16 09:34:16

Love the planning permission idea. We nearly bought a very similar house - decided on different area in the end - which had an ancient pokey kitchen but lovely elsewhere. Owners already had pp for lovely side return and back extension into the garden, would have been fabulous and was huge selling point for us.

Just make sure it looks functional and isn't grubby, somewhere they can kick off with at least, and that will be fine.

Flugelpip Wed 17-Aug-16 10:54:44

Oh this is all very reassuring - thanks, everyone. It's completely functional at the moment (I have two DCs, do lots of washing etc) and we've lived with it for five years so it's not a total disaster - it just looks very dated and not in keeping with the rest of the house (aside from the missing doors which I guess we can sort out). I do think kitchens are very personal. We've been looking into getting it fixed so we actually have plans drawn up that we can submit for PP without too much hassle, and it would be nice to feel that hadn't been a total waste of time/money.

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