7 Money-Saving Things to Do Before You Call Me!

Photo by rosevita from Morguefile.com

Fall is just around the corner.  Are you planning on putting your home on the market?  Save money and call me after you have done these 7 steps!

1.  De-clutter your house!  I can help but it depends on how much stuff you have.  Start in one room and put four boxes in a row, one for trash, one for give-away, one for keeping and one box for "Can't make up my mind what to do about it"!  For the last box, if you can not decide what to do with it after a week and you have not used the stuff you put in the box, give it away or pack it up. 

2.  Clean, clean, clean!!  I mean the floors, finger prints on the walls, windows, grout, the caulking, bathrooms, kitchen sink!  Who likes to smell things coming out of the drain.  And spiders, don't leave them for the new home owner.  I witnessed a purchaser leaving an open house because she saw a big spider in the basement!

This stove was left in a vacant house which would not sell for over a year.  We cleaned it and staged it and it sold in three weeks.  The previous agents said potential purchasers were really turned off by the grime on the stove.

3.  Paint!  It is the cheapest renovation you can do.  Here in Montreal you can get cans of premixed colored paint at Home Depot, Reno Depot and most hardware stores have their own cheaper line or they have paint which they liquidate because someone purchased the wrong shade and so they returned the cans.  A new recycled paint made by Loop is found in Walmart stores.  The price is pretty good and they plant a tree for every gallon sold.

Painting makes a house feel new.  If you have the time, paint the trims (doors and baseboards) a white color similar to Decorator's White from Benjamin Moore CC20 and paint the walls a light color depending on what kind of furniture you have.  Stay in the beiges or if your floors are darker, the light greys.

4.  Repair!  If it is broken, try to FIX it or get it FIXED.  The more repairs you do, the less problems the building inspector will find.  When inspectors find problems, the potential purchaser wants a price reduction of the house.  Fix toilet seats, doors which don't close, stairs, railings, gutters which cause the water to run down the front of the house instead of away from the house.

Photo by maggieau124 from www.morguefile.com

5. Check out the SMELL? I recently walked into a property which had a small dog. The dog was very excited to see me and left me a puddle by my feet. The house smelled like 'wet dog'. I do not mind dogs but many times if homes have carpets or rugs and a dog which should where a diaper, it is almost a sure thing that there is damage to the hardwood flooring underneath the rugs if no one noticed the little accident. 

So.....if you have pets, gerbils, rats it might be better to have them visit a family member while your house is going on the market. Hide the dog and cat dishes as some people do not like animals. If you have an aquarium, clean the tank.

Get rid of moth balls, air the basement out, check for water leaks to make sure there is no mold accumulating. Ask a friend to come by and see if they smell any offensive odours in your house.

If you are a smoker, it will be difficult to get the smell out of your house.  Some have suggested Febreze.  I do not think it is possible to rid the house of the smell of smoke other than repainting and removing any furniture and carpets which might be affected by it.  Otherwise the only suggestion would be to open windows as much as possible and have the smokers smoke out side.

6.  Curb Appeal?  You need it otherwise potential purchasers will not walk through the door.  Weed your garden, mow the lawn and trim your bushes.  Is your house visible or are your plants so overgrown your home looks deserted!  Trim it.

Add some fall plants in planters beside your front door.  Buy a new welcome mat and make sure the cobwebs are not hanging in front of the door.

Make sure your shingles are not starting to buckle.  This is a sign that your roof needs some work in the near future.  Check it out or a building inspector will.

Remove garbage, move garbage cans away from the front of the house, park large recreational vehicles in another place, not on your property and put lumber and tires into your garage if you have one.

7.  Hide Controversial Items!  If you have guns in the house, store them in a safe out of the way place.  The same would go for a moose head or any taxidermy.  Some purchasers might be offended if they are animal lovers.  If you smoke banned substances, keep them locked away along with explicit photos. 

So there you have it.  Call me when you are finished and all I will have to do it either help re-arrange your furniture and art, or if the house is vacant, bring in furniture and accessories to make it look fantastic.

Give us a call for a consultation if you are in the Montreal area.  514-222-5553