Imagine loving your small house but needing to move for a job or a change of scenery. Before you do so, consider how hard it will be to sell your current place.
Read on to learn what makes a small house difficult to sell and how to resolve some of the issues:
Table of Contents
1. Hard to Design
Designing a small house that is comfortable for people these days can be hard.
Many of us are used to larger spaces, even if we’re moving from an apartment.
For example, maybe you have a big living room in your current home. Many small houses also come with small individual rooms, so you might be unable to bring all your stuff.
Of course, the existing design makes organizing and decorating a small house hard. If you want to sell your small house, you’ll need to be very careful about how you set it up for a showing.
Then, you can show potential buyers how they could design the space with their stuff.
2. Not Enough Space
Depending on your house’s size, some buyers may need more space than your house offers.
Even if the space itself is fine, a buyer may have too much stuff.
It can be easy to let clutter build up when you don’t have a specific place for everything. Sure, it won’t take as long to clean and organize as it would a larger house.
However, people may not want to deal with clutter at all.
You’ll have to find buyers who don’t have as much stuff or who are willing to use a storage unit for items they don’t use that often.
3. Potential for Crowding
Of course, small houses can also be difficult to live in with other people.
Some buyers may have kids or may be thinking about having kids in the next few years.
Others may want the option of having their parents move in with them. In either case, a small house can feel even more so when you add more people to your household.
You might feel like you’re walking all over each other just to get to the kitchen or bathroom.
This can make it hard to sell your small house to many buyers, even if they don’t have a large family right now.
4. No Personal Space
If multiple people live in a small house, odds are, most of them will have to share a bedroom.
That means you won’t have any personal or private space to relax.
I don’t know about you, but I like my alone time. While I’d probably live in a small house alone, I know many people already have a partner, and some have kids.
Regardless of your family structure, you may need some privacy occasionally.
Getting that can be much more difficult when there are only so many rooms to choose from.
5. Unable to Host Guests
Some people love throwing parties or family gatherings.
Unfortunately, those people will probably never buy your small house because it can’t fit that many people.
If someone has family visiting from out of town, a small house can also be inconvenient. Sure, they may only have a few visitors who can fit in the house for meals or other short visits.
However, your small house may not have enough bedrooms or space for guests to stay overnight. That means visitors from out of town would need to book a hotel.
This may not matter to some people, but it could be a big deal for others, so you could struggle to sell your house.
6. Lack of Storage
When you have a small space, you want to make the most of it.
However, that may mean sacrificing storage space so that you have more room to live and go about your day.
Even if you don’t need much storage, that may not apply to the house’s next owner. Some people want a lot of storage for family heirlooms or seasonal items.
Your pool of potential buyers can shrink significantly if you don’t have that much storage space.
Now, you may be able to attract buyers who are looking to get into minimalism.
That’s a very small part of the market, so you or your real estate agent will have to get creative in marketing the property.
7. Minimal Ventilation
Small houses may also have less ventilation than their larger counterparts.
Good ventilation can ensure you have clean, healthy air to breathe, which can keep you from getting sick.
Moisture, smoke, and debris could build up in your vents, and that could cause a variety of problems. While you can take care of the problem with regular professional visits, the cost adds up.
Potential buyers may not want to do as much maintenance to ensure they have clean air.
Sure, you can install other air conditioners, but those take up precious space.
8. Dim Lighting
Another thing that can make your small house hard to sell is if it doesn’t have a ton of windows.
Even if it does, maybe the windows are small, so your house doesn’t get a ton of natural light.
Many potential buyers want natural light to get into the house, so you could lose out on a sale. Of course, you can add artificial lighting to subvert the issue.
However, adding lamps and similar sources will occupy the floor or side tables. When you’re already short on space, you may not want to use any of it for lighting if you can avoid it.
All of this can turn away people who may otherwise want the house.
9. Reduced Accessibility
Unfortunately, small houses don’t always come with the most accessible layouts.
That can make it difficult or even impossible for disabled people to use or live in.
Your doorways may be too narrow to navigate with a wheelchair. The halls could also be too narrow for wheelchairs and other mobility devices.
This can make it harder to sell to disabled buyers or people with disabled relatives who live with them. This could also affect buyers who have friends with disabilities who they want to invite over.
The new buyer could remodel the house to make it more accessible, but not everyone wants to do that.
10. Few Benefits
Small houses aren’t all bad; they can be a great choice for some people.
For one, you’ll have less space to heat and cool, so you could save money on utilities.
However, many of the other benefits aren’t as appealing to the general public. So while you may be able to sell your house to a minimalist, you need to find that type of person first.
When meeting with potential buyers, I’d focus on the benefits of a small house.
That could help you get more interest but may not be enough to lead to a sale.
11. Not Many Ideal Buyers
Small houses attract a very specific buyer due to less space.
You could sell a small house to a single adult or a child-free couple.
However, there are a lot more buyers who either have kids now or are planning to soon. Those buyers want a house that can grow with them and their families.
The market for small houses could be pretty good, depending on where you live.
You may struggle to find anyone interested in purchasing your home in other areas.
Please also read our article about why they are just so few small houses on the market.
12. Harder to Repair
If you’ve had your small house for a while, it may be time to repair or replace certain things.
Doing so could help make your house more attractive to potential buyers.
However, repairs could also be harder to do, thanks to the small space. For example, you might not have much room to set up and repaint the living room.
Getting new appliances in and removing the old ones could also be more of a hassle. So maybe you will pass those tasks on to the next buyer.
Regardless of the size, it can be a lot more difficult to sell a house that’s not up-to-date.
13. Near Other Small Houses
Where I live, houses tend to be around others of a similar size.
That means the neighborhood with small houses is full of them, so expanding one of those houses would make it look out of place.
It can be tempting to add onto your house to make it more attractive to more buyers, but you might not be able to get a permit for the work if it would affect the look of your neighborhood.
You must also consider what types of people live in these small houses.
If a potential buyer wants to live near other families, they may look for a larger property.
14. Hard to Sell
All the reasons above can make it hard to sell your small house. However, those things can also affect anyone who buys the house from you.
If someone knows they aren’t ready for their forever home, they may look for a house that they can sell quickly once they find a better one.
Some buyers may know how hard it can be to sell a small house, so they may be more hesitant to buy one.
That means you’ll have to spend more time finding the right buyer and convincing them it’s the right purchase.