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From a reduplicating suffixation of fix up, equivalent to fix +‎ -er +‎ up +‎ -er.


fixer-upper (plural fixer-uppers)

  1. (US, informal) A house, property, car, or other object that needs to be fixed up or repaired, often purchased as an investment.
    • 2003, Jay P. DeCima, Investing in Fixer-Uppers: A Complete Guide to Buying Low, Fixing Smart, Adding Value, and Selling (or Renting) High,[1] McGraw-Hill Professional, →ISBN.
  2. (informal, by extension) A potential romantic partner who may need some motivation to improve their personality or habits.
    • 2000, Susan Curtin Kelley, Dale Burg, The Second Time Around
      Don't be seduced into a relationship with someone who seems to be a "fixer-upper." Attempts at renovating people usually fail.
  3. (informal) A person who tinkers or fixes things up, in particular someone who fixes up houses, properties etc as an investment



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