Preparing to List Your Home for Sale? Start with the Basement
If you're hoping to sell your home quickly and for a good price, you can't overlook the importance of staging. But while making the living areas look bright, spacious, and comfortable is an essential start, not everyone pays the same level of attention to the basement.
This is a mistake, as savvy buyers know that a basement can reveal a lot about a home, and showing it in a bad light could easily cost you that sale. Here are six things to cover before thinking about listing.
1) Check the Heating System
Your home's heating system not only needs to be in good working order, but it needs to inspire confidence in a potential buyer. Make sure there are no unusual odors or noises coming from the furnace, and that the control panel and other visible surfaces are clean and look well maintained.
It's also a good idea to bring forward a routine service for the system, so that you'll have a recent certificate to show viewers as an extra selling point.
2) Electrical Control Panel
Similarly, if your home's electrical panel is in the basement, give it a quick clean to make sure it looks fresh and well looked after. Replacing a home's electrical system is an expensive inconvenience that any buyer will want to avoid, so make sure the panel looks in reassuringly good condition.
3) Inspect the Pipework
Pipework is often concealed in other parts of your home, but in the basement it's usually on full show. Check all the joints for any signs of rust or leaks, and also check the walls and floor nearby for lingering evidence of any old bursts.
4) Signs of Pests
From rodents to termites, pests in the basement can often go relatively unnoticed. However, an alert viewer will soon pick up on any signs of an infestation. Check for droppings, chew marks, or other tell-tale signs, and remove any bait or traps you might usually leave down. Don't give a potential buyer any excuse to suspect a pest problem.
5) Damp and Mold
It's normal for a basement to smell at least a little musty, but any clear odor of damp or mold will be a quick turn-off for a buyer. Also check for visible water marks or stains, even from a previous damp problem that's since been fixed, and deal with any patches of mold that may be lurking in the darker corners.
6) Deep Clean
Lastly, while a basement is usually a functional space rather than an area for daily living, it's still important that it's as clean and welcoming as possible. A deep clean to remove cobwebs and dust from every nook and cranny will give a much more positive impression, and will also help to clear up any stale odors that are inevitable in a closed, subterranean space.
When you're preparing to list your home, you'll probably spend hours on improving curb appeal and staging the main rooms. But even though your basement might not be a main selling point for your home, any problems that meet a viewer could quickly scupper their interest. Don't overlook the importance of making your basement look the part, and you'll reap the rewards with an easier sale.
About Main Line Homes
Are you interested in hiring a real estate team that is experienced in home selling throughout the Philadelphia Main Line suburbs, including Montgomery County, Delaware County, and Chester County? Janis Peterson, Realtor®, GRI, ABR, SRES, CSP, Main Line Homes, specializes in offering exceptional service to Philadelphia Main Line Buyers and Sellers since 1994. Contact us today for a home valuation and comparative market analysis (CMA), to determine the value of your home.
Janis Peterson, REALTOR®, GRI, ABR, SRES, CSP
Long and Foster Real Estate, Inc.
355 Lancaster Ave. Suite 100
Haverford, PA 19041