weather icon Clear

20 signs your home is losing value

Home values in the U.S. have risen more than 5% over the past year and are expected to continue to rise, according to real estate and rental marketplace Zillow. For home sellers, that’s good news. However, you shouldn’t assume that the trend of rising home values ensures your home will increase in value.

In fact, there are a variety of factors — some within your control, some that are not — that could signal your home won’t be worth as much soon. Keep reading to learn the signs that your house is losing value.

Your Home Is Dated Compared With Nearby Properties

Your house might not fetch top dollar if you haven’t bothered to update it. “Are your kitchen and bathrooms from the ‘Brady Bunch’ era while most of the recent sales in your neighborhood had the smooth, quartz countertops and stainless-steel appliances?” said Conor MacEvilly, a Seattle realtor with Re/Max. “Sure, pink tile bathrooms will one day be chic again — for a few fleeting months — but, in the meantime, dated means a potentially lower home value.”

Updating your home will likely help you sell it for more. However, that amount might not be enough to recoup the cost of the updates. “So, if your kitchen and bathrooms are dated but functional, then the net proceeds from the sale of your home might be the same whether you remodel it or not,” MacEvilly said.

You’re Not Staying On Top of Home Maintenance

Failing to keep up with maintenance and repairs on your home is a sure sign that it will start losing value as problems accumulate, said Daniela Andreevska, marketing director at Mashvisor, a real estate data analytics company. This includes mold and insect infestation problems, which can compromise the value of your property, she said.

Build an emergency fund to pay for home repairs when they are needed. Otherwise, if you don’t spend the money to keep your house maintained, you could have trouble selling your home.

Your Neighbors Aren’t Maintaining Their Homes

Don’t assume that maintaining your home will protect its value. “Neighbors who allow their homes to fall into disrepair can affect the value of your home,” said Lou De Medici, owner of Fast Cash Homes MN. Unfortunately, you can’t control whether your neighbors are maintaining their homes.

You’re Neglecting Your Home’s Curb Appeal

If you’re trying to figure out how to increase your home value, start by paying attention to how it looks to potential buyers. Your home won’t make a good first impression if you haven’t bothered to improve its curb appeal. “Simple upgrades such as new landscape and fresh coats of paint can help boost your home’s value,” said Sacha Ferrandi, founder and principal of real estate lending company Source Capital.

Inventory in the Housing Market Rises

The value of your home is tied to the housing market in your area, and a crowded housing market could spell trouble for your home’s value. “When inventory in the housing market rises, the value of your home has high potential to decrease,” said Bryan Bowles, founder and CEO of real estate technology platform Transactly. “Competition between sellers for buyers will increase and force prices down.”

You’ll likely have to go the extra mile to ensure your home stands out from comparable properties to avoid having to lower your price to get a buyer.

Nearby Homes Are Selling For Low Prices

Smart buyers will check the list prices and sale prices of homes to determine what a fair market price is in your neighborhood. “If your neighbors recently sold a house for a low price, buyers will often expect your house to also be priced low,” said Ben Mizes, CEO and co-founder of Clever Real Estate.

If you find out what sets your house apart from the lower-priced house, you might be able to justify your property’s higher price if you’re selling your home.

Your Neighborhood Is Hit By an Economic Slowdown

Your home could lose value if your neighborhood falls on hard times. “One definite sign is that businesses are moving away from your neighborhood,” Andreevska said. “This means that there will be fewer jobs, and fewer people will be willing to live in your area, so real estate prices will go down.”

If you see that one business has closed or left your neighborhood, don’t wait for more to follow suit before putting your house on the market. Act quickly if you’re thinking about selling.

There Are Several Foreclosures in Your Neighborhood

Your home value could drop if houses in your neighborhood are in foreclosure. “Even if you are not at the risk of foreclosure, buyers will believe you are if too many houses around yours have been repossessed by banks,” Andreevska said. “Buyers will not be willing to pay market value for your home, as they would think that you may go into foreclosure in a couple of months, after which they will be able to buy your home for much cheaper.”

There Are Lingering ‘For Sale’ Signs

Your neighbors’ inability to sell their homes quickly is a sign that your home could lose value. “If you notice that houses in your neighborhood have had those ‘For Sale’ signs up on their lawn for a long time, this is a bad omen for selling your own property,” said Jennifer Harder, founder and CEO of Jennifer Harder Mortgage Brokers. There could be a variety of underlying reasons these homes aren’t selling. Some certainly could impact the price of your home.

Interest Rates Rise

When mortgage interest rates rise, homebuyer demand tends to drop, said Ryan Fitzgerald, owner of Raleigh Realty in Raleigh and uphomes in Charlotte, North Carolina. This could have a big impact on your home’s value, he said. As interest rates increase, the number of people who can afford your home at its current price decreases because the cost of getting a mortgage to buy the home will rise.

School Performance Declines

Homebuyers with children pay close attention to how good the schools are in the areas where they are looking to buy homes. Homes in the best districts can sell at a premium. On the other hand, “school systems performing poorly on rankings may make your neighborhood less desirable,” De Medici of Fast Cash Homes MN said. Even if you don’t have kids, you should pay attention to how well the schools in your area are performing. If they fall in the rankings, your home’s value could fall along with them.

Your City’s Population Is Shrinking

Your city’s population actually can impact your property value. “If you have a declining population, you can be sure that means the buyers for your home are declining as well,” Fitzgerald said. It can also mean the number of houses on the market can increase if there are fewer buyers. “If inventory increases, that’s another sign your home’s value is about to begin trending downward,” he said.

Unemployment Is Rising in Your Community

Pay attention to news reports about the unemployment rate in your city. If it’s rising, your property value could decline. “Rising unemployment in the local area may preclude a softening market and a lower demand for housing,” De Medici said.

Even if just one major employer leaves your community, or a major industry in your state falls on hard times, your home value could fall. “Think when Michigan lost the auto industry during the Great Recession,” De Medici said.

Crime Rates Rise

An increase in the crime rate in your neighborhood or neighbors with a criminal record could significantly decrease the value of your home, said Ferrandi of Source Capital. “If there are ongoing signs of disruptive behavior and activity, your neighborhood’s overall value could decrease, in turn decreasing the value of each home itself,” he said. And businesses will shy away from opening up in areas with high crime rates, which also can hurt home values.

Property Tax Rates Rise

If your local or state government raises property tax rates, it could hurt the value of your home, De Medici said. Potential buyers might be scared off by the higher tax rates, which makes it hard to sell your home without dropping the price.

New Neighborhoods Are Developed Nearby

If a developer builds a new residential neighborhood in your area, you can see the price of your own home decrease, Mizes of Clever Real Estate said. “When given the option of buying a newer home, buyers will expect your home to be priced lower accordingly.”

Undesirable Construction Is Proposed

Keep an eye on the news so you’ll know if there is construction proposed that could impact your home value. For example, a factory, power plant or major roadway being built near your home could be a turnoff to potential buyers, De Medici said. You might be able to avoid a drop in your home’s value, though, by selling before construction begins.

Your Neighborhood Experiences Zoning Changes

Your home value could take a hit if property owners in your neighborhood get the zoning changed for their land. “When zoning changes occur from single-family homes to multi-family or a commercial district, property values tend to decline with more traffic brought to the immediate area,” said Ginna Currie, a New York state general appraiser at CT Appraisals.

Zoning changes typically require public hearings, where you can voice your objection to a change if you fear it could affect your property’s value. You might be able to prevent the zoning change if you get enough of your neighbors to help you object to the change.

Your Home Is Included In a Floodplain

Your property value can decline if your community’s flood map boundaries are redrawn to include your home. “With the cost of flood insurance on the rise, homes that sit within the floodplain can experience slow growth or even negative valuations,” said Brad Pauly, broker and owner of Pauly Presley Realty in Austin, Texas.

If you think your home was incorrectly included in a flood zone, you can submit an application to the Federal Emergency Management Agency at FEMA.gov to request a change to your designation.

The Rental Market Is Hot

If rental units are being built and filling up quickly, that could spell bad news for your home’s value. De Medici said a hot rental market can be a sign of a softening housing market. It suggests that people are more inclined to rent than buy. As a result, home values can fall. You might find it’s easier — and smarter financially — to rent out your home rather than sell it for a low price.

This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: 20 Key Signs That Your House Is Losing Value

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
Business Videos
Fire damages 7 cars at Las Vegas airport parking garage - VIDEO
Firefighters on Saturday morning extinguished a car blaze that damaged six other vehicles in a parking garage at McCarran International Airport. (James Schaeffer / Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Vegas Changes Everything: Grandma - LVCVA ad
"Grandma" is a new television spot from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority prepared to entice visitors to come during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. (Visit Las Vegas/YouTube)
Vegas Changes Everything: Chaos - LVCVA ad
"Chaos" is a new television spot from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority prepared to entice visitors to come during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. (Visit Las Vegas/YouTube)
New allegations involved Steve, Elaine Wynn - VIDEO
The new allegations were presented Friday in a motion that included a 2018 affidavit, alleging former hairstylist Jorgen Nielsen tried to convince a friend to say Steve Wynn raped her and that she bore his son. The affidavit also included new allegations suggesting Elaine Wynn and Nielson orchestrated the assault scandal. (Renee Summerour/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Fitness chain Life Time acquires former Sullivan Square site
Fitness chain Life Time has acquired the former Sullivan Square site in Las Vegas for $14 million. The southwest valley property, across the street from Ikea, is little more than a giant hole in the ground. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Fashion Outlets of Las Vegas in Primm outlet mall changing its name - VIDEO
Chad Dillow, co-owner of Step Right Up, is building his attraction at Prizm Outlets, which recently changed it name from Fashion Outlets of Las Vegas, in Primm. It will include 3D trick art, ax throwing, escape rooms and carnival-themed games. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @KMCannonPhoto
O.J. Simpson files lawsuit against The Cosmopolitan over TMZ story - VIDEO
A lawsuit filed Thursday alleges that The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas defamed O.J. Simpson when hotel employees told TMZ he was kicked out of the casino “for belligerence” in November 2017. (James Schaeffer / Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Phil Maloof on selling his Palms Place penthouse.
Phil Maloof sold his 59th-floor penthouse at Palms Place. (Eli Segall/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Bleutech announces Las Vegas land purchase deal
Bleutech Park Properties reached a purchase agreement for 210 acres at Las Vegas Boulevard and Cactus Avenue, project spokesman Tom Letizia announced Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2019 at a news conference at the M Resort. (Elizabeth Brumley/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Stolen Dodge Challenger found, suspect arrested - VIDEO
A $250,000 custom-built Dodge Challenger was stolen on Oct. 30, 2019, just before it was to be displayed at the Specialty Equipment Market Association trade show in Las Vegas this week. The thief was found by an Nevada Highway Patrol trooper, who rammed the trooper's car with the Challenger and got away. The suspect was ultimately arrested and the car recovered. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Terbine's, a tech firm, decision to relocate business from Bay Area to Las Vegas
Terbine's, a tech firm, decision to relocate business from Bay Area to Las Vegas. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
A walk through the historic Huntridge Theater in Las Vegas - VIDEO
The Huntridge Theater became a musical venue in 1992 and was a staging ground for groups on the rise and alternative superstars, from Smashing Pumpkins to Sarah McLachlan, the Deftones, Nine Inch Nails, Green Day and Fugazi. The venue has been closed since 2004. This video, taken on Oct. 31, 2019, shows what's left of the theater after 15 years. (David Guzman/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
MGM Resorts International looking to sell another property
MGM Resorts International is working to sell its MGM Grand property on the Las Vegas Strip. (Renee Summerour/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Developer Sam Cherry reveals plans for shareDOWNTOWN.
Mayor Carolyn Goodman and Councilwoman Olivia Diaz will attend this event where plans are revealed for a future apartment complex in the Arts District. (Shea Johnson/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas Convention Center expansion update - VIDEO
Take a drive outside of the new Las Vegas Convention Center expansion project. (Severiano Galvan/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Binion's debuts a spinning bar overlooking Fremont Street Experience - VIDEO
Binion's debuted its spinning bar inside the Whiskey Licker Up Saloon. The Rotating bar only goes at one full rotation per 15 minutes overlooking the Fremont Street Experience. (James Schaeffer/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Day 3 of the 2019 Global Gaming Expo
Day 3 of the 2019 Global Gaming Expo took place at the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2019. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @KMCannonPhoto
Southern Nevada could set a new resale-price record in coming months.
The median sales price of previously owned single-family homes – the bulk of the market – was $310,000 in September. Before the economy crashed last decade, prices peaked in June 2006 at $315,000, according to the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors.(Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Walmart container park in Henderson - VIDEO
Henderson could be home to a container park associated with a Walmart Inc. initiative. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Recession lessons could help Las Vegas face next slump - VIDEO
While the last economic downturn had a dramatic impact on local casinos, most experts expect the industry will be better able to weather the storm during the next recession. (Mat Luschek / Las Vegas Review-Journal)
St. Rose Parkway Construction - Video
St. Rose Parkway continues to have construction along the six-and-a-half mile road. Review-Journal studio host Aaron Drawhorn and business reporter Eli Segall go over the construction projects that are coming to Henderson.
MGM and victims of Oct. 1 reach settlement agreement - VIDEO
MGM Resorts International and lawyers representing potentially thousands of victims of the Oct. 1, 2017, mass shooting on the Las Vegas Strip have reached a tentative settlement of between $735 million and $800 million. (Mat Luschek /Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Live music and EDM dominate the night on day 2 of A’Le’Innstock
After sunset bands rocked the crowds at A’Le’Innstock in Rachel, Nevada on the second night of the event.
iPhone 11 Release
Local Las Vegas long time Apple product consumer shares her excitement for the new iPhone 11 release Downtown Summerlin. (Elizabeth Page Brumley/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Lihi Levin talks about a mobil app Dropit - VIDEO
Lihi Levin, regional manager at Dropit Shopping, talks about a mobil app Dropit. The app lets customers leave their shopping bags at a store then have them delivered the same day to their home or hotel so they can shop without carrying multiple bags all day. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
North Las Vegas company prepares for Mars - VIDEO
Robert Bigelow and his Bigelow Aerospace manufacturing facility played host to eight NASA astronauts and 60 engineers this week getting to know the company’s B330 autonomous, expandable space station. (Elizabeth Brumley/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas developer talks about a new apartment complex called “the yoU”
Frank Marretti lll, founder of G2 Capital Development, talks about his new apartment complex called “the yoU” near UNLV. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Steel cables will hoist roof at Allegiant Stadium - VIDEO
Stainless steel cables are being put into place at Allegiant Stadium to begin the process of putting the roof on the 65,000-seat stadium in Las Vegas. Stadium Chief Operating Officer Don Webb explains how the cables will be used to get the roof put on the future home of the Raiders and UNLV football. (Heidi Fang/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
The last remaining Sigma Derby game in Las Vegas
Derek Stevens, owner of the D Las Vegas, talks about the last remaining Sigma Derby horse racing game in Las Vegas inside his casino floor. (Erik Verduzco/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Popeyes Spicy Chicken Sandwich Review
Janine Blake of Las Vegas gives her review of the new Popeyes Spicy Chicken Sandwich at the restaurant’s location on west Bonanza Road on Thursday, Aug. 22, 2019,