Thinking about listing your home? Take a hard look around, get out a sheet of lined paper and start making yourself a “honey-do” list of chores.
Try to be critical – even brutal about what needs to be accomplished to put your Home’s best foot forward. Go from top (roof) to bottom (crawl space) and straighten, clean and fix.
Roof – Get up there (or have someone else) and get the moss off. Never pressure wash a roof because that will lessen its life. Clean it with “moss out” or laundry detergent and hot water, a hose and a broom. And since you are up there, clean out and hose the gutters a assure free-flowing gutters and downspouts. Make sure downspouts have the water directed away from the homes foundation as much as possible.
Yard – Make sure all shrubs are tidy, beds are weeded and lawn is mowed and/or raked. Remove “yard art” that may not appeal to broad group of buyers (no old toilets with petunias).
Front door, stoop or porch – make this area shine! Time to pressure wash cob webs, maybe repaint the front door an attractive accent color and display some blooming flower pots – regardless of the time of year. This is your “first impression” spot. Sellers have one shot to make this front door a positive experience as the Realtor is fumbling with the keybox.
As far as the inside is concerned…de-clutter and cleaning would be the first steps. Next, painting tired walls is the cheapest way to refresh a drab interior. Paint using high quality paint and nuetral colors. There are many “white” paints that do not project and austere or stark feel. Do not use wild colors that reflect your personality – your goal is to not live there anymore. Do a quality job and watch the drips!
Flooring…some sellers say, “Well they (the buyers) are just going to replace the carpet themselves, so I won’t spend the money”. While that might be true, take a hard look at your carpets and other flooring. If it can be cleaned and is in good condition, by all means -do that. If, however, there are pet stains and odors – that carpet AND pad have to go. Again…pick nuetral colors and quality products.
Little fixes like drains that down flow well, toilet handles that have to be jiggled and the like – either fix these or get a handy-person to take care of these things. It will make the home easier to sell and will be called out in a home inspection anyway.
Lastly, get down in that crawl space. Make sure it is free of debris, that plastic sheeting (if equipped) is spread out properly and that there is no falling insulation or duct work. If there is – get it fixed. Again, doing these little fixes will give the impression of a well cared for home and will probably need to be addressed in the transaction anyway.
And finally, call your favorite Realtor (hopefully me) to put fresh eyes on the home and make suggestions.