The Shelving Store Blog
Maybe you're looking for a new neighborhood, maybe you got a new job somewhere else, maybe you've been watching too much HGTV and got the moving bug...whatever the reason, everybody moves sometimes.
And there's a lot to think about. There's packing, there's scheduling movers, there's figuring out what to keep or what to throw away, and it can all get a little overwhelming. So overwhelming, in fact, that you might not be giving enough thought to re-selling your current home!
As much as you might like your current house, selling it is one of the easiest ways to recoup some of the expenses from your move (and, let's face it, you probably can't live two places at once). Before you get your home out there on the market, there's a few things you can do to up the resell value and get a few more eyes on it to take some of the headache out of listing it:
Update your bathroom: We can all admit it - when we're shopping for a home for sale, one of the first things we judge is what kind of condition the bathroom is in. A few quick bathroom upgrades like new paint, fresh wallpaper, new lightbulbs, and maybe some new towel racks or bathroom shelves will help it stand out and look much cleaner and more approachable - and, more importantly, more purchase-worthy!
Make it energy-efficient: "Going green" is still a big thing on the minds of many homeowners, and taking steps to make your home greener and more energy-efficient will entice a lot of buyers (particularly those that don't want to have to put the effort in themselves). Install low-flow showerheads, replace your incandescent bulbs with something more efficient like CFL or LED bulbs, and clean the coils of your fridge (especially if you're not taking it with you, as a lot of homeowners simply don't feel like the fridge is worth the hassle of moving) to keep everything easier on the environment and more appealing to prospective buyers.
Leave some organization behind: Especially in these economic times, home buyers are increasingly looking for homes that come at least a little pre-furnished. Everyone has their favorite couch and mom's old end tables they want to bring with them, but the little things like shelves, garage shelving, and even entryway furniture could help sway potential buyers if you're leaving them installed right where they are to save the next residents some time and hassle.
Repaint in neutral colors: You've probably grown pretty fond of your paint choices and wallpaper, but the odds are pretty good that whoever buys your home is going to want to re-do it. Take some time to repaint all the painted walls in a more neutral tone that can be easily repainted later to make it easier for the next tenants to make it their own (even if you are going to miss that perfect shade of yellow you found for the front room).
Fix up the floors a little: We're not saying to completely re-carpet or re-tile everything, but taking some time to make the floors look nicer will help your prospective buyers feel like they have less overall work to do on the home and will help keep everything presentable. Lay down some new tile grout to fill any obvious breaks or gaps, polish any hardwood, and deep clean any carpet to keep it as fresh and clean-looking as possible before you show the house off.
Cleaning is never a bad thing, even if you just do a little bit here and there, but there’s some things around the house that need...a little more work.
Maybe it’s designed to keep something else clean, maybe it’s just a natural dirt magnet, but whatever the reason there’s a lot of things around your house that are going to need a little more than just a once-over with the Mean Green. Here’s five things that are always in need of a little deeper clean that you can get to over a weekend:
The Blinds: It might be a little hard to see with all the sunshine, but blinds are a pretty natural magnet for dirt, pet dander, and other miscellaneous “house crud”. Every few months, particularly in the sunnier months when the sunlight lasts a little longer, wipe your blinds down with warm water and dish soap. Vertical blinds can be removed and laid flat before wiping, ideally kept on some ventilated wire shelving to allow for better drying. Wooden blinds can be treated with a tiny amount of Pledge or just some warm water.
Washing Machines: Even if it washes your clothes, your washing machine needs a little help to keep itself clean now and again. Front-loading washers can be cleaned out by spraying the rubber gasket in the front with vinegar and wiped down, and then by running an empty cycle on the highest temperature setting with 2 cups of vinegar into the detergent dispenser. By adding a half-cup of baking soda to the machine and running a second cycle, you can dry out the vinegar and prevent the buildup of mildew - after all, if your washing machine is full of mold, it’s not going to get much washing done, is it?
Fridge & Freezer: Once a season, take inventory of your fridge and freezer; anything expired (or anything that’s simply not going to get eaten) can get tossed out, and anything that winds up in the fridge that doesn’t actually have to go there (most hot sauces, for example) can get placed on a pantry organizer and kept out of the way to free up room. After this, take a vacuum to the refrigerator coil and grill to keep everything running effectively, and wipe down the doors with either some orange cleaner or stainless steel cleaner depending on the material your fridge is made out of.
Barbecues & Grills: Some places might tell you to do a quick wipedown of your grill with an onion right after cooking, and while that’s a good short term solution it isn’t going to get everything as edibly clean as it needs to be. Disconnect the propane, take off the metal grates and let them soak in hot soapy water, and scrub down the hood and walls with a stiff grill brush using a cleaner designed for your grill’s surface (stainless steel, porcelain, etc) to get everything scraped away and shiny clean.
Mattresses: Even if the sheets have been freshly washed, when’s the last time you actually cleaned the mattress? Vacuum off your mattress and leave it on its side for 12 to 24 hours before replacing the sheets to really get all the crud out. Wash your pillows (not just the pillowcases) on the hottest setting possible to prevent bacteria and keep your bed as clean as possible.
After you get all this clean, you’ll never be satisfied with just wiping something down with a wet rag again. (We’re sorry in advance.)
Decluttering is something we could all stand to do a little more often - but there’s plenty of ways to do it wrong, or even overdo it, too.
Consider, if you will, the humble front porch.
If left unattended, the front porch can often become a dumping ground for unused lawn chairs, or if your front porch is fully enclosed it often becomes a second entryway, a place where backpacks go to hide away and grow dusty until the next school year starts.
There’s just not enough hours in the day sometimes, is there?
Managing your time, particularly for families, can be one of the biggest challenges you can face. There’s always chores that get neglected and rooms that fall into disarray not through any kind of carelessness or neglect, but more through the fact everyone has to go to work, soccer practice, and grandpa’s house and it just gets in the way sometimes.