October 22, 2018
No one likes to overpay for things and especially not when you are trying to sell your home. Yet that very scenario plays out in many sales when a seller waits for a buyer’s Home Inspector to point out every possible repair issue.
You can avoid scaring away potential buyers by addressing these 7 frightfully important areas of concern before putting your house up for sale:
- THE “BONES” – this includes the roof, exterior and foundation of the home. A visual inspection should reveal any specific problems. If you do find any areas of concern you can decide whether to call in an expert for a professional opinion.
*Downspout extensions will divert most water away from a foundation, and avoiding standing water avoids most foundation issues. Above, keeping gutters free of debris helps stop water from backing up into the roofline. Has wind pulled any vinyl or siding away from the house, requiring repair?
- ELECTRICAL – Codes are constantly updating. Be sure all switches are in working order, plug a lamp into each outlet to make sure they all have electricity flowing to them.
*Are there any outlets or switches that need to be covered?
- PLUMBING – Use a flashlight and check all sink, toilet and tub/shower drains. Be sure to check basement or crawl space for possible drips under your washing machine, dishwasher and any other drains.
*Do any of the drains have an unpleasant odor? Could be the p-trap in need of unclogging
- FIXTURES – Is the HVAC in good working order? Is the AC cooling and the furnace heating properly? Is the water heater sound, and heating water efficiently? (If water isn’t heating it may be just a heat element needs replaced, rather than the entire unit!) Do all the lights and ceiling fans work? Does the light still come on when the garage door is engaged?
*While you are in the garage, check all the light fixtures and electrical outlets there, too, and don’t forget your outdoor outlets and lights!
- APPLIANCES – If they are staying with the house they should be in good working order, too. An inexpensive fridge thermometer will tell you what you need to know about the refrigerator and freezer. Check each unit on the stove top, all the features of the oven, including the clean feature (great time to get that chore out of the way!) Check the gasket around the oven, too.
*Making minor repairs is far less costly than replacement or being asked for a deep discount on the price due to poorly working appliances
- WINDOWS – Complete a visual inspection, specifically looking for evidence of condensation, water leaks or clogged weep holes, as well as checking the function and locking mechanisms.
*Weep holes are small openings in the casing of the window that allow rain water to drain so no mildew or mold has a chance to form
Your local marketing specialist can help you understand what the expectations of a potential buyer will be in your area. These 7 items and other suggested preparations for a sale may be what keeps a home inspection report from frightening a buyer away from making a full price offer on your house!