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The traditional approach to selling a home can certainly be lengthy. It requires preparing and listing your home for sale, hosting showings, negotiating with prospective buyers and then working your way through the closing process. With homes in Arizona spending a median of 51 days on the market — double the time it took last year, according to Redfin — you may be looking for ways to speed up your sale.
If that’s the case, there are other options available, including companies that excitedly advertise “We buy houses!” These homebuying companies, which operate across the country including in Arizona, can significantly speed up the process for sellers. They make all-cash offers on homes and are known for being able to finalize the transaction quickly, in some cases in as little as a week. As an added benefit, many also handle all of the closing paperwork (and pay all the closing costs). Read on to learn more about how they operate and what options are available in Arizona.
Companies that buy houses for cash in Arizona
There are national “We buy houses” companies with a presence in the state, as well as local and regional companies that follow this business model.
One of the biggest national chains is actually named We Buy Houses. It operates in all 50 states and has dozens of offices throughout Arizona, including popular markets like Tucson, Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe and Flagstaff. The company makes all-cash offers in 24 to 48 hours and can often close in as little as seven to 14 days. And like many other house-buying companies, they buy as-is, meaning you don’t have to make repairs or do any sprucing up.
Another well-known buyer that operates in Arizona is HomeVestors, which you might know as the “we buy ugly houses” company. HomeVestors has locations in Phoenix, Tucson, Flagstaff and Mojave/La Paz.
There are also many smaller regional companies that serve specific parts of the Arizona real estate market. These companies typically follow the same business model as the national operators. Some of the local cash buyers in Arizona include:
- AZ Home Buyer: Based in Scottsdale, this company serves the entire Phoenix area. It says it provides same-day offers and does not charge any commissions or closing fees, and it also promises that you can set your own closing date..
- Andrew the Home Buyer: This company has been buying Arizona homes for more than 15 years and says it can close in as little as seven days. It, too, charges no fees and lets you set your own closing date.
- Joe Homebuyer Arizona: Established in 2004, this buyer claims to make cash offers in 10 minutes and close in seven days or less. It buys homes in any condition and says it will “beat any verified offer.”
iBuyers offer a slightly different spin on the cash-homebuying process. They also pay cash for your home and can finalize the process more quickly than a traditional sale. However, iBuyers are predominantly online-only companies and usually charge fees, which can be steep. In addition, iBuyers typically do not purchase homes in poor condition.
How do ‘we buy houses’ companies work?
Though there may be slight variations from one homebuying company to another, most follow a similar process. Once you reach out, via phone or email, they will either have you send photos electronically or a company representative will visit your home to assess its value. Sometimes an offer is made immediately, but it could take up to 48 hours. You’re not under any obligation to accept the offer once it’s made.
Most of these companies will buy homes in any condition, no matter how poor, which means you won’t have to make any repairs to close the deal. And the entire sale can usually be finalized very quickly, in as little as seven to 14 days.
The main benefits are speed and convenience, and of course you don’t have to pay a real estate agent’s commission on the sale. Selling to these companies can also be useful if you are financially strapped and need the money fast, as you don’t have to wait on a buyer’s inspection, mortgage underwriting, etc. However, keep in mind that there’s a trade-off for such ease: You’re likely to make less money on the deal. These types of companies usually offer lower prices than you could make in a traditional market sale — and sometimes far lower.
While selling your Arizona home to a “we buy houses” company certainly speeds up the process, you’re likely to walk away with far less money. If you have the flexibility to consider other approaches, here are some alternatives.
- Sell with a real estate agent: Listing your home with the assistance of a Realtor will take longer but likely be more profitable. The median sale price for an Arizona home as of April 2023 was $423,600, per Redfin data. That’s significantly higher than prices were a few years ago — the median in April 2020 was just $295,900 — so you could potentially make quite a profit.
- For Sale By Owner (FSBO): Going it alone and selling your home without an agent is another option. This approach is not easy though. While you’ll avoid paying a listing agent’s commission, you will have to do all the work yourself: marketing the listing, hosting showings, negotiating with buyers, handling the closing process.
- Become a landlord: If the proceeds from a sale are not an urgent necessity, you might consider renting your home out to tenants. This could provide a steady (and potentially lucrative) stream of rental income.
If you’re interested in selling to a “we buy houses” company, the first step is to do your research. This method has both benefits and drawbacks to consider, and the industry is susceptible to scams. Take the time to compare different companies before reaching out — read online reviews carefully, check with your local Better Business Bureau and comb through the companies’ websites for fine print and easy-to-miss details. If you want to accept an offer from one, be sure to examine the contract very carefully before signing on the dotted line.
While there may be some less-than-reputable players in the cash-homebuying industry, most of these companies are legitimate, particularly the bigger players. Many have Better Business Bureau accreditation and verified five-star reviews on Google. Vet a company carefully before you sign anything, and if there’s anything in the contract you don’t understand, don’t be afraid to ask questions.
“We buy houses” companies, in Arizona and anywhere else in the country, are profit-driven businesses. Most will offer less — and sometimes substantially less — than what you would earn selling your home traditionally, with the help of a real estate agent. Expect about 70 to 80 percent of your home’s fair market value.
It should cost you nothing to sell a house to a traditional company that buys homes for cash — most “we buy houses” companies do not charge any fees. Most will also cover all of the closing costs associated with the sale process. However, iBuyers do charge service fees, and they can be steep, so do your homework before deciding on a company.