By Joseph Callaway,
The number one question sellers ask is – “What do I need to do to get the house ready?” The answer pretty much depends on the house and the best answers will come from meeting early in the process with your Realtor. There are so many decisions to be made and often the agent arrives after money has been misspent. However, there are some things you should do regardless.
1. Have a roof inspection. In fact, it might be a good idea to have more than one to weed out the unnecessary work. Roof inspections are free because this is how roofers get work. Once you have knowledge of your roof’s condition, you can make a decision on what to do, or you might wait to get your Realtor’s opinion. At least when you ask your Realtor, they will have this knowledge as well. An agent knows from experience what a buyer might ask for once you’re sold and in escrow. A good way to judge would be to ask yourself if you were the buyer – what would you feel about a new or repaired roof versus a bad roof? If the roof is bad, you can always wait and face it later when the buyer has had their inspection and then negotiate. Or, you can have the work done and use the new roof as a selling point to justify your price. Either way, get that inspection done now so that you know what you are dealing with.
2. Have your air conditioning and heating units serviced. These systems are vulnerable to the smallest items shutting everything down. The last thing you want is for something small to make the air conditioner not work when the buyer’s inspector measures the temperature split. When this happens, the buyers often ask for new units, costing thousands of dollars. While you’re at it, change all the filters. It’s just good psychology when that inspector is poking around your home. It sends a message of good maintenance rather than deferred maintenance.
3. The third big worry buyers have that you should alleviate is water problems. Fix any leaks. Clean any rust or calcium stains. If you have a pool, make sure the cleaning and filter systems are working. A pretty blue pool is one of your big selling points and when a buyer sees problems, they want them fixed. Don’t forget the sprinklers and bubblers. If they are messing up the windows every time they go off, potential buyers will have misgivings about the stains on the glass.
This list is by no means everything to consider when selling your home, but it is a good start. Just be sure to seek good advice. A real estate professional can make or save you thousands of dollars in the sale of your home.
Those Callaways are an independent real estate brokerage with 23 years of experience buying and selling homes in the Magic 85254 ZIP Code.