I’m a bit of a snob when it comes to audio and video entertainment consumption. When high definition televisions first hit the market in 2004 I quickly snatched up a Samsung 42” DLP. Within months I completely abandoned any programming that wasn’t broadcast in 1080p. I just couldn’t stand watching standard definition broadcasts anymore. The image quality was too poor.
Unfortunately, the only shows available in HD at the time were wildlife related. Apparently the only cameramen that could afford the expensive equipment needed to record this stuff resided on the polar ice caps of Antarctica, or the African Serengeti. Needless to say, I watched a lot of penguin marches and cheetah vs. wildebeest chases back in those days.
Less than five years after I purchased that fancy TV, it died. The cost of repair exceeded what a new, lighter model with the same screen size was sold for at my favorite electronics store. The DLP rear-projection television had quickly become functionally obsolete.
About a $1,000 later I was the proud owner of a new 42” LCD HD TV, which will no doubt be worthless by year’s end.
Removing Functionally Obsolete Items from a House before you Flip It
Retail homebuyers are a funny bunch. You may find this surprising but they expect everything in a fully remodeled home to work perfectly. That’s why whenever I acquire a property with functionally obsolete items like whole-house intercoms or central vacuum systems I have them removed. The same goes for aboveground swimming pools and spas.
It’s unlikely they work correctly. And even if they appear to be working properly when I purchase the property it’s highly probable they won’t be when the home inspection is done.
And then guess what happens?
The retail homebuyer expects me to pay to fix something that’s cheaper to replace. Or worse, they demand I drop the sales price so they can choose their own replacement.
I’m much better of just getting rid of these items. Take it from me – the buyer will not miss something they never knew was there. I highly recommend you remove anything inside or outside a property that isn’t essential to basic operation – before you market it for sale.Flipping Houses and Functional Obsolescence by Marty Boardman