Keeping your home in optimal condition is essential in maintaining property value. Whether you plan to sell your home this summer or not, there are a few essential things to check, repair and or replace after every Minnesota winter. As a REALTOR®, I often have to show properties that have not been properly cared for. Throughout Anoka County, Chisago County and northern Washington County, the areas where I work extensively, I have seen houses with interior ceiling damage from leaking roofs, cracked driveways and unmaintained decks that can be downright scary to walk on.
Surprisingly, these are not all foreclosure homes. While I understand it can be frustrating to have to make repairs just prior to selling your home, not making the repairs means being priced to compete directly with foreclosure homes for thousands less.
If repairs had been made in a timely manner and the home properly maintained, this expenditures before selling might have been avoided.
With hindsight being 20/20, I often hear sellers lament about how they wish they had chosen to keep the home in better condition all along and had more of an opportunity to enjoy the benefit of a well maintained home. It is much more beneficial and cost effective to assess your property for required repairs on an annual basis than to be hit with everything at one time when you sell.
Here are 6 spring maintenance tips that will not only beautify your home, but also aid in retaining your home’s value for years to come:
Roof—Walk around the exterior of your home with binoculars if necessary and check for any missing shingles that may have been blown off during a winter storm. If any are missing or you see other concerns, bring in a contractor to assess the damage and make repairs before you have water damage on the interior of your home.
Siding—Power wash debris buildup from vinyl or aluminum siding. Buildup can stain siding overtime.
Deck Settling—Check for any settling or worn boards on your deck especially if it is several feet off of the ground. If the supports of your deck appear to be pulling away from the home or if the boards are weather-worn, have it reviewed by a professional before that first summer barbeque.
Paint and Stain—Did the harsh winter sleet, snow and ice cause the paint or stain on your siding, trim or deck to start to peel? Now is the time to assess the damage.
Gutters—Gutters filled with leaves? Take the time to clean out to prevent water backups. Keeping water away from the foundation is the best way to keep water out of your basement. If your gutters are clogged, they cannot do the job and the rains will pour right over the clogged-gutter’s edge near the walls of your home. Consider adding screens or guards to prevent leave buildup in the future.
Driveway—The winter’s freeze and thaw cycle can do damage to an asphalt driveway. Cracks need to be filled or they will get worse. It is recommended that blacktop driveways also be seal-coated every 2 years when there in an open area with extreme sun exposure to extend the life of the driveway.
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