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Old 07.04.2021, 10:58
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Re: Importing prebuild houses worth it in Switzerland?

Another thing you need to take into account is resale value.

This story is not Swiss but German.

In-law relatives erected a prefab wooden house in Germany. This was back in the late 1970s or early 1980s, and for cost reasons they bypassed all the local companies and went for a major Swedish prefab manufacturer.

All they had to do was pour concrete for the foundations and cellar. The house was then delivered on one or two big trucks and assembled on site.

The first problem that occurred was that the German builder who had cast the concrete cellar had misinterpreted the Swedish specifications and the dimensions were off by a few centimetres. This could be fixed of course but it led to some sweat and meant the Swedish guys could not commence the assembly at the agreed time and all this was invoiced. Not a pleasant situation to be in as the cost calculation had been very tight and they were now out on a limb spending money they didn't have.

But by and large they were happy with the house. By the design standards of the day, Swedish houses were much more modern and luxurious than German ones anyway. So they never regretted their decision.

But the problem came when about 10 years ago they wanted to sell the house. Many neighbouring houses of similar age had recently been sold for mouth watering sums (think a desirable and well maintained neighbourhood in one of the better parts of one of Germany's most prosperous cities - houses there were easily worth 10 times what people had put in). Now that they were retired, they decided to cash in on the value and move to a lower cost area.

They initially put the house on the market for a price similar to that of the neighbouring houses. They did get a lot of interest, but nobody wanted to step up and pay the price because everybody felt a pre-fabricated Swedish wooden house must be inferior to a brick-built German one. They eventually had to knock almost a third off the asking price to find a buyer.

You could of course say, serves them right. They built on the cheap so why should they expect to sell at the same price as those who didn't. But over they years you tend to forget that bit and then you're in for a shock when you do sell.

Last edited by amogles; 07.04.2021 at 11:09.
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