Was that summer? Did I miss it? Oh well…Fall happens to be my favourite time of year anyways and hopefully you will find ways to enjoy it as well. The cooler nights, fresh, crisp days, fall fairs. Great cooking with fresh harvest produce grown at farms locally and in Ontario. It's also a great time to spruce up the inside and outside of your home or cottage so you won't have so much to do in the Spring. Here's a page from our Seller's Guide that helps Sellers prepare their home or cottage for sale. I find it's a handy checklist for maintaining our home so that it's fresh and clean and in good repair year-round. So I can enjoy it more. You don't have to wait to sell your home to get it in the shape you want it. Do it now and you'll feel the joy of living without the next thing that has to be done prompting you out of your armchair by the fire. Enjoy!
Remember the sixty-second rule: that’s all the time you have to create a good first impression! Mow the lawn, rake leaves, trim trees and shrubs that keep light out of the house, and remove dead plants. It will probably be easier to sell your house if the buyer can see it, outside and in. Pick up tools, garbage cans, hoses, toys, and building materials and store them neatly in a storage area. Replace broken or missing roof shingles, and straighten and clean the gutters and downspouts. Clean all windows and mend torn screens.
Paint your house, if necessary. This can probably help improve curb appeal more than any other fix-up! If you decide against painting the entire house, at least consider painting the front door, window frames and shutters. Shine front door handle. Seal or resurface the driveway and repair broken steps and walkways. Paint or replace your mailbox and post. Dress up the front yard with some simple landscaping.
Clean, Clean, Clean
Step back for a moment and look at your home as if you were seeing it for the first time. Every room should be neat, spotlessly clean, dusted and uncluttered. Steam-clean the carpets and wax the floors. Wash the walls, windows and light fixtures. Tighten loose stair railings and clean all woodwork. In the event that you feel a project of this magnitude is better left to a professional, ask your real estate agent to recommend a professional cleaning service.
Use bright light bulbs in the foyer and throughout the house. Fill the house with a pleasant aroma, such as berries in the summer or cinnamon in the winter, or some other fresh scent.
Replace the carpet if its old or worn. It costs money but you may find that you will more than recoup that cost then the house sells and you will feel better living in it. Patch cracks and nail holes in the walls, and repaint wall in neutral colours. Nail down creaking boards and stair treads. Lubricate any sticking or squeaking doors. Open all curtains, and replace them if they are getting old. Add lamps and lighting if the house is dark. Set out fresh flowers.
Rearrange or move furniture to make your rooms look more spacious. Discard worn furniture and move extra furniture to a storage unit. Remember, too much furniture and too many knick-knacks makes rooms look cluttered and small. One or two decorative items per surface is plenty, so pack the rest away, including some family pictures. Less is more.
Kitchen and Baths
These rooms should sparkle! Clear off counters, and clean all appliances and fixtures. Scrub the floors and walls. Re-caulk tubs and showers. Clean these rooms thoroughly, and be sure they smell fresh!
Take those things to Goodwill that you’ll have to discard anyway when you move. Organize shelves and straighten shoes. Be sure that sliding doors operate smoothly on their tracks and knobs on kitchen drawers are secure.
Dust and wash off lint and spills from the washer and dryer. Dust and wash off the water heater. Organize any shelves and empty all trash.
Light and Bright
Do everything you can to brighten the interior. Replace wallpaper with neutral paint and repaint shabby or dark walls. Open the blinds and replace broken windows and window seals. Always maintain a comfortable temperature inside the house.
Happy Fall in Muskoka!