12 Tips to Keep Your Home in Selling Condition for Winter
Baby, it’s cold outside! I mean really cold! But that doesn’t stop real estate from selling! People buy and sell property every month of the year. So, it’s important to keep your home in good shape year round. With each season there are specific things you can do to ensure your property is at its best for showings. The following is a list of 12 things every homeowner should do, especially during the winter months. Whether you live in a single family home, townhome, condo or loft, keeping up with home maintenance will save you money in the long run and keep your home in good selling condition!
Routine Maintenance Checks
- Heating/ AC – Once a year, check your heating/AC system. Make sure it’s in good working order. Change your filters every season to optimize efficiency. Make sure you have proper ventilation and insulation.
- Fireplace – Look for and remove fire hazards like creosote buildup, cracks or debris (leaves, birds nests, etc.) in the chimney. Have it cleaned by a chimney sweep. If you have a ventless fireplace, make sure you have proper ventilation.
- Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors – Check batteries in all smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors once a month. Make sure all are in working order and that you have at least one on every level of your home. Ideally, carbon monoxide detectors should be placed at least at nose level of sleeping people.
- Sump Pump – The typical life span of a sump pump is about 10 years. Check it each year by testing it to ensure the pump turns on!
- Hot Water Tank – Make sure your hot water tank is insulated during colder months. Also insulate your pipes to prevent them from freezing and bursting. Insulate pipes near windows, doors, and unheated areas. Don’t forget to disconnect your garden hose from outside faucets.
- Check Your Roof – Look for loose shingles, leaks, debris, etc. Take care of any problems right away.
Don’t let small problems get bigger. It might be inconvenient to deal with it when you’re not thinking of moving, but when you get ready to put your home on the market the list of things to do can be overwhelming. A great tip is to keep a binder of everything you do to improve your home. These are things buyers want to know about. It also can help with the sale of your home. They see that you care about your property and take time to maintain it.
Winter Maintenance Tips
- Protect Your Entryway. Snow, ice, and salt can take a toll on your floors. Have a place in your home where visitors can take off their shoes. Keep a boot tray to collect the mess! Make sure you use the boot tray too! You don’t want dirty footprints throughout your home. If you live in a condo building, the main entryway and hallways can help get rid of some of the snow and ice, but it can still linger. If you don’t have room in your entryway, consider putting a chair or bench right outside your door. Don’t leave your wet boots, coats, hats, etc. in your front hall. Find a place that’s out of sight for showings.
- Keep sidewalks clean and provide safe access to your home. Always keep salt or eco-friendly substitutes on hand. Also don’t forget to shovel and salt access to your back yard, garage, deck, etc. In addition, check your roof and gutters for ice dams and icicles. Rake snow off the roof if necessary.
- Take care of your windows. Windows can get really dirty in the winter months. Do your best to keep them clean. In addition, check for air leaks, foggy windows, etc. Use weather stripping and/or caulking to keep your home warm and cozy.
- Keep it clean. We stay inside more during the winter. Cleaning becomes even more important. In addition, be aware of odors. Try not to use strong seasonings when cooking. Keep your home smelling fresh!
- Show off the outdoor areas. It may be cold outside, but buyers still want to dream about warmer months. Provide photos of what your deck, balcony, or backyard looks like in the summer.
- Add more lighting. The winter days can be grey and dreary. Make sure your home is well lighted. Add floor or table lamps to brighten a room.
Whether you’re considering selling your home during the winter or later in the year, it’s extremely important to maintain your property year round. Follow these tips to keep your home in good selling condition and watch our blog for more seasonal tips as we approach spring! It will be here soon – I promise!