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End-of Summer Checklist to Prepare Your Home for Sale

As the last few weeks of the summer season draw to a close, it’s a good time to look ahead and plan out home maintenance projects that have to be done before the cold weather hits. Now is a good time to make repairs, especially if you are thinking of putting your home on the market this fall.

While the weather is stillwarm and before the peak buying and selling months of September and October, walk around the exterior of your home and make a list of problematic areas. Many problems can be fixed by you, but larger issues will require assistance from an expert. If you are working with a real estate agent, he or she can help you find a dependable, thorough home inspector to check around the exterior of the home. An inspector will be able to get to areas where a buyer may not want to venture, including the roof and under the home.

End-of-summer projects include:

  • Outdoor painting. If you don’t have the time and/or the funds to do a full painting job, go around the outside of the house and touch up any areas that look rough. If you find peeling paint, you can scrape, sand, prime then re-paint to maintain an even surface.
  • Outdoor caulking and sealing. Windows should be checked inside and outside for possible leaks or cracks. With cold weather just around the corner, leaks or cracks could mean higher heating bills. Have leaks and cracks sealed with caulk, then look at the trim around each window-if any pieces are pulling out, check for mold or rotting, then replace or reattach wood.
  • Patio and deck maintenance. On wood decks, rotted boards should be replaced, painted or stained as needed and debris cleared. On brick patios, you should replace any missing bricks, level off areas where tree roots have pushed up the bricks and re-grout any areas where weeds or weather have degraded the hold between bricks.
  • Concrete and asphalt patching. If your home features an asphalt driveway, it can be repaired with asphalt patching material. Asphalt should be sealed every other year. If the driveway or walkways are concrete, cracks or holes can be repaired with epoxy patching material.
  • Landscaping. Keep landscaping clean and attractive. Weeds should be pulled, dropped fruits and nuts removed from under trees to deter animals, and trees and bushes trimmed so they don’t scrape the side of the house. Many landscaping companies offer affordable fall clean-up packages for homeowners who don’t want to or can’t do the work themselves.

If your home is still on the market leading into the holidays, you can spend the colder months doing interior cosmetic upgrades, such as replacing floor coverings, upgrading cabinet hardware and interior painting. With a prioritized list, you will feel more confident in your ability to finish interior updates before the start of the 2015 real estate season!