It’s been a slow start to the season here in the Bay area, but it is definitely that time of year and if you’ve been considering selling your house, it’s prime selling season.
So what does that mean for you home sellers out there?
This is the time to get started on those projects you’ve been waiting for good weather to start tackling. You can easily take care of these things yourself, but be honest with yourself too. If you find it difficult to carve out time in your personal schedule, outsource it. You’ll thank yourself later and be glad you saved yourself the stress, aggravation and wasted time by having someone else help you. Besides, I’m sure you’ll get over the guilt in no time!
Get Your Windows and Screens Washed. We’ve had a tremendous amount of rain here in the San Francisco Bay Area and I can’t even express how excited I am to get some sunshine. Every time I try to get my car washed, it rains so I gave up on that for a little while. As you can imagine, all that rain, along with the dirt that gets blown around with windy conditions, etc. makes windows look pretty bad and since we’re embarking on sunnier days and looking forward to opening windows to let in that fresh air, do yourself a favor and improve your view with a good window washing.
I highly recommend using professionals for this, especially if you’re in a 2 or more story home. It’s not expensive and it’s worth EVERY PENNY. They have the tools to do the job right. If you hose your windows down with a garden hose, you’re NOT doing it right. Now if you’re interested in finding out if you’ve got cracks in your windows, broken seals, etc. that’s one way to find out, but I’m sure you’ll appreciate not having a pool of water to clean up inside.
While you’re getting your windows cleaned, you may as well get the screens scrubbed and washed. I know the company I use charges a nominal flat fee for all the screens when you clean your windows – well worth it!
Get your Screens Repaired
Since you’ve cleaned the windows and the screens, you’ve probably noticed loose screens, rips or holes. Now’s the time to get them repaired. Again, you can do this yourself, but my experience is you don’t know what you’re doing, you’ll end up with floppy screens from excess material. I highly recommend a service like screenmobile.com. They come to you, give you a price, take the screens with them, repair it, return at a scheduled time and they reinstall them for you. If they can’t fix it, they’ll build you a new one. An example of one that may not be fixable is that patio screen door that everyone keeps body slamming into…the frame might be so warped that you’re better off getting a new one. They can help.
Paint the Exterior
This activity should really be reserved for when the rainy season has passed. I’ve watched as painters try to finish a paint job while fighting with rain…It doesn’t work. The paint doesn’t have a chance to dry and the overall result is not good, so don’t push it. However, once you get the green light, GO FOR IT!
Trim the landscaping
I can tell you from personal experience that the landscaping takes a beating this time of the year. It’s time to take a good hard look at what you’ve got to work with. It’s spring, so plants are starting to bloom – remove and replace any that perhaps did not survive the season. The grass may start to grow a little faster now that you’re getting sporadic sunshine. The lawn probably needs a good mow and edging and this would be a good time for fertilizing as well to encourage good, green growth. If your tree branches need a little trimming, now is the best time to do it before all the leaves and flowers or fruits grow in.
Clean the Pool
If you are a pool owner and you haven’t reactivated your pool maintenance service, it’s time to do so. If you maintain your own pool, you’ll want to check the ph level and do all the things that you need to to make the swimming pool a sparkling asset to your backyard. My daughter wants to go swimming so bad, but it’s not warm enough yet and judging from the floating particles I saw in the water, they’re not ready for us to swim yet either. That’s fine by me.
A little bit of elbow grease these next few weeks will really pay off. Good luck and don’t be shy about picking up the phone to call on the experts.
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Home Selling Strategist, Alice T Chan, is the San Jose Home Staging Examiner and publishes the “Set the Stage for Home Selling Success” e-zine. Get your F.R.E.E e-course: “8 Steps to Creating an Irresistible, Market Ready Home that SELLS” at www.AliceTChan.com.