Just a few days ago a seller told me he had to replace his hot water heater, an investment of about $700. He went on to tell me that this cost was going to make him “less negotiable” on his selling price. Really? I got to thinking about this, and recalled many a time when a proud seller, while showing me their home, pointed out how new, how efficient, or how unique their hot water heater was.
So what? The buyer expects hot water. They also expect the hot water heater, just like the attic fan, to work properly. I would bet that after a buyer sees the home for the first time, 99.9% could not tell you the brand, and 90% could not tell you the color or location of the hot water heater. They don’t care.
Here are a few comments you will never hear from a buyer:
1. “We had it narrowed down to 2 great homes. It was a tough decision, but we bought the one with the 18 month old hot water heater”.
2. “I really loved that house. It was so charming, but the hot water heater was 14 years old. I wasn’t born yesterday.”
3. “I really love how hot the water is here in this home. It just seems hotter than the last house.”
4. “We’re going to pass on 123 Maple. That hot water heater is not as energy efficient as Mom and Dad’s hot water heater, a standard by which all hot water heaters should be measured.”
Isn’t replacing an old hot water heater really just a maintenance issue?