Should I Buy a Turnkey Home or a Fixer Upper?

Like almost everything else in life, the answer is “It depends.” Buying a turnkey home (move-in ready) and a fixer-upper home (needing renovations) both have their advantages and disadvantages. Let’s explore the pros and cons of each:

The Turnkey Home


  1. Convenience: Turnkey homes are ready for your immediate occupancy. There is no requirement to invest time or money into renovations or repairs prior moving in.
  2. Time and Energy Savings: With a move-in-ready home, you avoid the time-consuming and potentially stress-inducing process of coordinating renovations and dealing with contractors and construction.
  3. Predictable Costs: Since the home is already in good condition, you have a clearer understanding of the total costs involved in your purchase.
  4. Minimal Disruption: Moving into a turnkey home allows you to settle into your new space without disruptions caused by ongoing construction or renovations


  1. High Purchase Price: Turnkey homes are in much higher demand, and therefore generally come with a higher price tag than fixer-uppers.
  2. Limited Customization: You may have fewer opportunities to personalize the home’s design and layout, as most of the renovations have already been completed by the seller.
  3. Potential Hidden Issues: Even though a turnkey home may appear wee-maintained, there could still be underlying problems that may not be immediately visible during the purchasing process. It’s crucial to conduct a thorough inspection to uncover any potential issues.

The Fixer Upper


  1. Lower Purchase Price: Fixer-Uppers are typically priced lower than turnkey homes, offering the potential for significant savings on the initial purchase.
  2. Personalization and Customization: With a fixer-upper, you have the opportunity to create a home that reflects your personal style and preferences. You can make design choices and renovations according to your vision
  3. Potential for Increased Value: By investing in renovations and improvements, you have the potential to increase the property’s value, allowing for future equity and potential profit if you decide to sell.


  1. Time and Effort: Renovating a fixer-upper requires time, effort, and potentially significant project management skills. You need to be prepared for the challenges and demands of overseeing renovations and hiring contractors.
  2. Higher Costs: While the initial purchase price may be lower, the cost of renovations and repairs can quickly add up. It’s essential to budget for unforeseen expenses that may arise during the renovation process.
  3. Disruption and Inconvenience: Living in a construction zone can be disruptive and inconvenient. You may need to find temporary accommodations during major renovations, which adds to the overall cost and inconvenience.
  4. Potential for Overwhelming Projects: Some fixer-uppers may require extensive renovations, including structural repairs or major system upgrades (electrical, plumbing, etc.). Undertaking complex projects can be overwhelming, especially for first-time buyers or those with limited experience in home renovations.

Ultimately, the choice between a turnkey home and a fixer-upper depends on your personal preferences, budget, timeline and willingness to take on renovation projects. It’s essential to consider your comfort level with renovations, available resources, and your long-term goals for the property.

About The Alfriend Group

Kyle Alfriend has been selling and marketing homes for over 20 years, successfully selling and buying homes in a variety of market conditions. He has sold over 1,200 homes, totaling over $250 million in homes sales. In Dublin, he has sold more homes that anyone ever. He has represented the areas largest builders, built his own homes, and owns and manages several investment properties. He has been awarded the "Top 10 M.A.M.E. Award (Major Achievements in Marketing Excellence) by the building and Realtor associations every year since 1993. He believes that everyone deserves the very best in knowledge, experience, and integrity when buying or selling their home. The Alfriend Group was started 5 years ago as a real estate team of professionals, specializing in buying/selling homes, property management, and real estate investments. For more information, call us today at (614) 395-1776.

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