Show Notes: Prep for a Profitable Home Sale – On the House

Show Notes: Prep for a Profitable Home Sale

By on May 30, 2015


Summer is the time of year  homeowners traditionally sell  homes. If you are planning a home sale and are looking for top dollar, it’s time to roll up your sleeves to prepare you home for sale. Our guest, realtor, Scott MacIntyre, shared his top home improvements and tips  for sellers.

Thank you to our guest, Scott MacIntyre:


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If coming home to a tired and won out house is getting you down, try some easy and inexpensive ways to give your home a quick summer makeover 

Clean the winter dirt build up off the screens

Wash the windows inside and out

Trim all the overgrown plants and clean up the flower beds

Plant some colorful flowers and add colorful container gardens to your porch

Perk up the entry door with a bright coat of paint

Replace the old rusty porch light with a new LED fixture

Paint or replace the mailbox

Throw out the doormat. Doormats are the newest “outdoor décor”, so select something bright and welcoming to compliment your new door color.



Limit contact with flood water

Flood water may have high levels of raw sewage or other hazardous substances. Early symptoms from exposure to contaminated flood water may include upset stomach, intestinal problems, headache and other flu-like discomfort. Anyone experiencing these and any other problems should immediately seek medical attention.

Home or private drinking water wells. Warning – Do not turn on the pump. There is danger of electrical shock and damage to your well or pump if flooded. Do not drink or wash with well water. Water from a private well that has been flooded may be contaminated until it is tested and safe to use.

Do not use the sewage system until water in the soil absorption field is lower than the water level around the house. If you have a home-based or small business and your septic system has received chemicals, take extra precautions to prevent contact with water or inhaling fumes. Proper clean-up depends on the kinds of chemicals in the wastewater.

Note – never try to drive through flood water. Attempting to drive through flood water is a leading cause of flood-related injury and death.


Mold cleanup: Mold can cause serious health problems. The key to mold control is moisture control. After the flood, remove standing water and dry indoor areas. Remove and discard anything that has been wet for more than 24-48 hours.

More about mold from Centers for Disease Control 



Prepare Your Home for Sale on a Budget

Remove Excess Clutter and Furniture

Many homes contain too much furniture. You may benefit from removing 2 to 3 pieces of furniture from each room. Less furniture will make the rooms appear bigger. You can pay about $100 a month to place the furniture into storage or simply stack it neatly in the garage for free.

Remove all personal photographs from tables and walls. Patch holes in the walls or hang non-personalized artwork over the existing nails.

Pack up your bookcases (you’re going to move anyway).

Clean out the closets and store non-essential items.

Rearrange your kitchen pantry, kitchen cabinets and bedroom closets in an orderly manner.

Thoroughly Clean the House Before Selling

You can hire a professional cleaning crew for about $300 or do it yourself for free. Be sure to wash the inside of the windows.

Rent a carpet steamer and clean the carpets. You may find they do not need to be replaced.

Dust the tops of your doorways and window frames.

Polish all wood / ceramic flooring.

Wash all light fixture coverings and ceiling fan blades.

To give your home a more open feeling, consider removing a few doors that open into each other or otherwise block the flow of traffic.

Updating the Kitchen on a Budget

Kitchens are the most important room in the house. It’s the heart and soul of the home. Even if a buyer is not much of a cook, the kitchen is still where family and friends tend to gather.

new granite is out of your budget, consider either re-grouting the kitchen counter tiles, which is surprisingly cost effective, or covering them with granite tiles instead of granite slab.

For wood cabinets, stripping the finish and re-staining or painting will save you more money than re-surfacing the cabinets.

Buy new knobs and / or pulls for the cabinet doors. If you have 40 or so knobs on your kitchen cabinet, at a cost of about $5 per knob, your total outlay for new hardware will be about $200. New hardware will transform the appearance of your cabinets.

Replace a worn kitchen faucet for about $100 to $200.

Buy new kitchen sink basket strainers for less than $25 each.

Consider installing kitchen pendant lights over the sink. Cost: About $500.

Painting the Interior

Professional painters will probably charge you anywhere from $300 to $500 to paint each room, but with a little patience, you can paint the rooms yourself. This is not the time to get creative.

Choose a soft color in a light brown tone (never white), and paint every room the same color.

The painting will go faster if you paint the ceilings the same color, but ceilings really pop if they are a lighter color than the color of the walls. Lighter colors also make the ceilings appear higher.

For a 10 x 10 room, you will need 2 one-gallon cans of eggshell paint. Each one-gallon can of paint should cost no more than $25. For the amount of money a professional painter will charge you to paint one room, you can probably paint the entire house yourself.

Freshening Bathrooms on a Budget

If you have wallpaper in the bathroom, it’s most likely peeling and should be removed. You can rent a steamer to remove the wallpaper or strip it yourself.

Consider replacing the toilet and vanity, especially if they are stained or particularly outdated. A new toilet and vanity will cost less than $500, and it’s easy to replace a toilet.

Buy a two-light wall fixture or a light bar for over the    sink. Cost: About $200.

If the tub is stained, hire a professional to refinish it. Cost: About $200 to $300.

Replace water-stained shower doors or clean them with a lime dissolving detergent.

Buy a new shower curtain and tie it back with ribbons.

Hang fresh towels and lay down a new bath rug.

Place scented candles near a basket of tightly rolled wash cloths to create a spa-like environment.

Stash all personal items under the bathroom sink.


Get The Beer!

Beer Around the Garage and Workshop

If you like to putter around, then you may be spending a good amount of time in the workshop and garage. Besides enjoying a beer when you’re putzing around, here are some ideas for using beer as a tool in your kit.

Flying Bug Catcher. If you like to work free of flying insect, then setting up a trap may be a solution for your workshop and garage. Many bugs are attracted to the smell of beer and you can construct a simple one-way in, noway out trap for flying insects. Punch holes in a metal-lidded jar or plastic lidded tub just large enough for winged insects to get inside. Pour beer into the container deep enough to drown the bugs and replace the lid. The insects will climb in and be unable to escape, creating a no-fly workshop zone for you.

Polish. Beer is an effective polish for metals and surfaces. Dampen a rag with beer and rub down the surface of choice. In some cases you may want to rinse the surface with clean water when you’re done. In other instances you don’t need to rinse the beer from the surface, for example if you are scrubbing garden pots. . Keep in mind that rinsing will help keep critters away from the finished project as well as keep it from being sticky to the touch. The residual sugars in beers will be attractive to our small multi-legged friends so rinse them completely if you’re not interested in making new friends.

Soaking. Do you have an old coffee can or catch-all containers of assorted screws, nuts, bolts and washers? Beer can help dissolve or soften the rust if you want to salvage those priceless project parts. The acidity of the average beer  will help eat away at rust that has developed on metal parts and pieces. If the beer you’re using is still carbonated, thee CO2 will assist in the release of the rusty particles. Pour beer into a watertight container, place the pieces in the beer and set your timer for an hour. Stirring or shaking the pot a few times during their bath will help agitate the parts and get beer into more nooks and crannies to do its work.


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