Last week I posted about how we are selling our house. Since then a lot has happened, and we are starting to realize just how much work we are in for in terms of getting our house ready for sale.

My wife and I sometimes like to watch property shows and so we are very aware of all the things that buyers tend to look for when searching for a home.

What we have learned is that probably the biggest hurdle when it comes to selling a house, is getting the potential buyers in through the front door. The best way to do that is to have a well presented property that not only looks good on inspection, but also stands out in photos online.

So one of the things that we will be spending a lot of time on, is fixing all those little things that we have just let slide for the last few years, but can really reduce the value of your home if left unfixed.

Garden Maintenance

Gardens

One of the first things people see when they go to a property is the front of the house and the front garden. It needs to make a good impression, and despite my very healthy looking fruit and vegetable garden, the rest of it is in a pretty bad state. So bad in fact that we are going to get some hired help to assist with loping a tree that could cause damage to the house should a strong breeze get behind it.

I should never have let it get to this stage and so now I will wear the cost of that decision.

 

Walls / Paint

Walls are one of those things that always seem to get damaged the longer you are in the house. Whether it is dirty little hand prints everywhere, or just normal wear and tear from things like an errant soup can in your shopping bag that’s hell bent on destroying your plaster board walls. Unfortunately walls are just something that always seem to get damages, and need to be repaired prior to a sale. The good thing is that they really aren’t that difficult to fix and it doesn’t cost a lot of money.

The bigger issue is having to paint them once you have repaired the damage. Unless the repair is only small, often painting just one spot will mean it looks out of place and that you will have to paint the entire area to help it look like new again.

Fortunately nothing brings a home back to life like a new coat of paint, so hopefully it will not only cover up all those little hand prints, but it should also assist us in selling the property for an optimum price.

The down side of wanting to paint the house is that we want to sell our house before the Christmas season, so we are fast running out of time. The end result is that we will likely have to pay professional painters to come in and just do a quick once over of the house, while my wife and I focus on de cluttering and fixing all the other smaller things on our must do list prior to sale.

 

Guttering / Downpipes

This is a little embarrassing, but one of our downpipes that feeds our water tank has become clogged with debris. It has gotten so bad that there is actually a small shrub that has started growing out of the downpipe (the shrub is looking quite healthy though).

I have been meaning to clear up the debris for ages, but I just haven’t managed to find the time or the will to do so.

The big problem with letting the downpipe get to this point is that on that side of the house there are only 2 downpipes, and with one completely blocked, should a decent downpour of rain occur then there is the real potential of water damage seeping in from the outside via overflowing guttering. So far we have been lucky that there hasn’t been a lot of rain, however it really does need to be fixed soon.

 

Maintenance can Save Money

It’s not just big things that can end up costing you money either. There are plenty of ways to save money around the house by performing routine maintenance. Things like fixing leaky taps, leaky toilets, regularly cleaning solar panels and are all activities that can save you money in the long run.

There are also really simple things like regularly checking that your fire alarms are in good working order, which can save you a lot of money should they detect a fire and alert you early enough to put it out before the house is a write off.

 

Home Maintenance is Important

What has become evident to me is that home maintenance is something that shouldn’t be avoided and then just done to sell your house. There are major costs associated with this type of approach, and if I would have simply kept on top of all these maintenance jobs, not only would I have almost nothing to do prior to sale, but everything would have been really easy for me to do myself and the jobs would have been a lot smaller and much less expensive.

 

Question

What maintenance activities do you undertake around the home that save you money?