End of Summer Property Checklist

Preparing for the Season Change

The sun’s starting to set earlier, doonas are coming back onto the bed, you’ll even occasionally have to sleep with the window closed – that’s right, unfortunately summer is starting to draw to a close. That’s going to be exciting news for many of us though, as autumn can bring some incredible moments of undisturbed golden calm and beauty.

Evergreen trees start to stand fresh, tall and proud, while other lawns are covered in a golden blanket of leaves that almost acts like an echo of the shining sun. Before you get right into the swing of autumn though, you should make sure your house is ready!

The weather will change, and the sun may have taken its toll on your property, but let’s look at what you can do to keep your home looking smart as we head into March. We buy houses in Port Orange

Check your Fire Alarms

As it begins to get colder, we’ll all start using fireplaces and heaters. With great comfort comes great responsibility, and that’s why you should make sure the smoke alarms in your house are functioning. The Victorian Metropolitan Fire Brigade recommends replacing the 9 volt battery in your smoke alarms every year when daylight savings ends – that’s the first Sunday of April for those in the states that don’t take part! Also, keep in mind that houses built after 1997 need to have fire alarms connected to 240 volt power mains.

Check for Leaks Inside and OutYou always want the home to be nice and dry for autumn and winter, so now’s the time to check up on all of your windows and doors. Seek out any leaks, and re-seal the gaps! That way you’ll stop any invasive draughts, as well as preventing water leakage when the weather inevitably comes to rain on your parade.

Don’t forget to inspect all your outdoor taps as well and if you have one, your outside shower, for any leaks. These often have a slow drip which can add significantly to your water bill. Fix these as required.

Tidy the Front of your HomeIf you are thinking about selling later in the year, the end of summer can be a great time for beautification works on the facade of your home. Even if you don’t sell over winter, maximising that kerb appeal will make your home catch the eye of anyone nearby. A fresh coat of paint, removing the clutter and maybe getting some autumn-friendly flowers arranged in your front yard or in pots can be just the touch you need.

Decluter the Gutter

This one’s a bit fiddly but it has to be done! Getting up high with a ladder and ensuring your gutters are clean, clear and strong is vital. They’ll be seeing a lot more action over winter so you need to make sure they can hold up to rainwater and foliage.

Keeping those leaks from before in mind, it’s worth checking the roof for any cracking, loose tiles or similar damage as well.

Clean Out Your Vents

If you have air conditioning or other ventilation systems in your home, there’s every chance that bacteria and grime have built up over summer. The humidity forms a fertile breeding ground for bacteria, so going through these systems with appropriate cleaners is a great move before you shut them off.

Think about dehumidifying the home as well! Getting most of the moisture out of the house is great preparation for autumn and winter. Keeping homes dry is a great way to help protect against pesky winter colds in advance. Clean out dryer vents and hoses as well, and your dryer will work more efficiently.

Pet Care

Pets are like us, they like clean beds to sleep on so now is the time to clean and sanitize their bedding and living spaces both indoors and out. Wash and dry their bedding and ensure they have a warm place to settle down for the night, away from draughts and rain that will come with the season change.

Clean Out the Kitchen

Don’t worry, we aren’t suggesting you need to clean out each cupboard, but rather focus on some of the less attractive cleaning tasks…..cleaning the garbage bins! Rinse out the kitchen bin and any recycle containers with warm soapy water. Add a splash of disinfectant for a fresh smell and to kill any lurking bacteria.

Wipe out under the sink and organize all your cleaning equipment. A tidy space will make you feel super organized!

Organise Summer Gear

Start to collect all those summer toys that the kids have been playing with outside over the last few months and give them a good clean with soap and water. Make sure you throw out, or recycle any broken toys.

Before you pack away your beach umbrella and towels check their condition. Is the umbrella still working, are the beach towels badly frayed? Depending on their condition consider throwing them out and take advantage of the any end of season sales to restock your summer necessities – ready for the end of the year.

Sort Through Your Wardrobes

As summer comes to an end, spend an hour or so going through your clothes. If you haven’t worn some of your clothes or accessories all summer and they don’t have any sentimental value, consider donating them to charity or selling them on consignment or on eBay.

Culling your summer wardrobe now is easier as you’ll know what you have worn over the last few months and won’t get carried away thinking oh I might want to wear that …..But never do. The other benefit of clearing space is to allow for any new autumn purchases.

Inspect the Roof

Now is the time to check your roof for broken tiles, worn out seals around vent pipes and damage to chimneys. Finding and fixing these before the weather changes is much easier. This can be a tricky job and certainly one that may be more suited to a professional.

Clean the Laundry

The laundry is one of the most used rooms in the home, but is often over looked when it comes to cleaning. By spending an hour tidying it up thought will help make doing the chores all that more pleasant.

Clean out the dryer vents of any lint, remove any items around the edges of your dryer as it can prohibit ventilation and can be dangerous. Wipe down all surfaces, window sills, tops of washing machines and around the buttons where the washing powder may have fallen. Mop the floor and throw or put away any items that may have accumulated in the laundry or in my case things I have found in my kids pockets like handballs, toys, pencil…you name it

Are you missing anything that would make doing laundry easier? Consider adding a surface for folding clothes, better lighting, a rolling laundry basket with dividers or a garment rack.

This checklist isn’t just for rounding out the summer, it’s helpful preparation for the seasons ahead. Keeping your home warm and dry will make the middle of the year much easier and relaxing. You’ll be able to curl up in front of the fire and not have to worry about certain bits of maintenance at all! You can thank us later on.

Preparing your property for an autumn sale

Autumn is a great time to sell. Buyers have well and truly settled into the year, most people are back at work, kids are in their school routine and those who’ve made a new year’s resolution to buy a new home, are eager and ready to home hunt. But as the weather starts to shift, how do you make the most of your property to help buyers fall in love with it?

Create autumn curb appeal

This step is important no matter what time of year you’re selling. Why? Because potential buyers often do a ‘drive past’ a property before they come in for an inspection – they are seeing if the property looks good and worth their time. This means that first impressions are critical and this starts at the curb.

Check gutters and drainage

If you’re surrounded by deciduous trees you’d know that this time of year your gutters start to fill up with dead leaves. Buyers don’t want to see a roof line overflowing as it gives the impression the home is unloved.

It’s a good idea to get a professional to help you here to clean the gutters and make sure there are no drainage issues. As autumn can bring heavy rain, you don’t want to have to deal with damp or mould issues during open homes.

Check your roof

It’s probably best to get an expert to help you with this job as it can be dangerous. But getting up and checking that the tiles on the roof are all in good condition and not damaged is an important job to do before you open your home for inspections. In most cases, serious buyers will organize for a property inspection to be carried out and if the report highlights issues with the roof it may turn buyers off.

If you have any broken tiles get them fixed by an expert as leaving them can result in more extensive damage to your property especially if water gets in. Also ask the roofer to check the seals around vents and chimneys are not worn out and if they are seal them up.

Tidy up the garden

Much of Australia has been hit by extreme heat over summer, so if your garden has been depleted of water and is looking a bit worse for wear, spend some time giving it love. Water the lawn each day or every second day leading up to the inspections (just make sure you comply with water restriction laws), remove any dead or dying plants and replace with fresh flowering autumn plants. Rake up any leaves and trim larger bushes and shrubs.

If you own a pool make sure there are no leaves floating around and ensure there are none stuck at the bottom of the pool – you want future buyers to feel the pool is going to be super easy to look after and keep clean.

Check heating systems

Make sure your home feels warm and inviting when buyers are inspecting it, you want buyers to see that it stands up to the cold but not steaming hot. Put your heating on a timer so it switches on an hour before they arrive. If it’s cold and you have a fire place or a gas fire ensure these are lit just before the agent arrives. The flickering of a fire can totally change the atmosphere of a room.

Some additional ways to ensure your home feels warm is to ensure there are no cracks around doors and windows and fill in any cracks. Watch out for any older windows as these are the worst offenders for letting in drafts. So spend an hour or so checking and fixing these before the first open for inspection.

Lighting

As the days get shorter and the sun drops down to a lower angle, you’ll need to rely on your internal lights to create the feeling of light and space.

Pull back all the blinds, open the shutters and ensure all curtains are open. Turn on every light in the house, including table lamps and if you have a dark room consider adding spotlights behind furniture.

Bring the season indoors

Autumn is a favorite season for many, so embrace the season and add subtle reminders of autumn around your home to make it seem more inviting. If your home has a fireplace, have a low burning fire during the open home can help to create an inviting autumn atmosphere. Potential buyers will love to envisage themselves lounging by the fire after a long day.

Consider adding a small decorative bowl of branches, berries or even mini pumpkins around the living room as it can give a fresh and subtle indoor autumn experience. Styling your dining room table with small vases of autumn coloured flowers can help create the right ambience. Plus, add some cozy accessories such as chunky throws, some warm toned cushions in heavier wintery material and scented candles. These touches will all help make your room and home feel more inviting and in theme with the season.

Styling to sell

The tips above are Autumn specific, but for a successful sale it’s essential you spend time styling your whole property. To help you get ready for your upcoming sale, here is our easy to following Styling to Sell infographic that walks you through the eight steps to successful styling to sell. Of course your agent is the best person to talk to here so make sure you ask them what they suggest you focus on as every property is different.

We buy houses in Miami Lakes