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Prepare your home

Running repairs

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In an ideal world, you would have the time to fix or replace everything as soon as it breaks, clean everything as soon as it becomes dirty and never let things get out of hand. But we don't live in an ideal world and most of us are simply too busy to get even half of the things done that we would like to.

When it comes to getting ready to sell your home, it is definitely worth carrying out any minor repairs that are outstanding. Pay attention to detail - it's the little things that get on peoples' nerves and put people off.

So get your toolbox, it's time to do all those little odd jobs you've been putting off for ages. Below is a list of things to check and fix if possible. They won't add value to the property, but they'll help create a good overall impression:

  • Treat any serious problems such as damp or dry rot.
  • See to faulty door latches so that they shut properly and do not stick.
  • Oil or replace squeaky door hinges.
  • Make sure all your windows open smoothly.
  • Empty or mend guttering so that rain actually flows down the drain rather than pouring over the edge.
  • Fix any loose roof tiles and replace any that are missing.
  • Replace any dead light bulbs, preferably with soft lighting.
  • Put new washers into any dripping taps.
  • Mend loose or broken handles.
  • Make sure that all the cupboards and drawers in the kitchen open and shut OK.
  • Check that the doorbell works - if it doesn't, get a new one or replace the battery.
  • Replace any damaged glass anywhere on your property. This will make the place look quite run down.
  • Get some adhesive and stick down any peeling dog eared bits of wallpaper.
  • If it's winter, bleed your radiators and make sure that there are no noisy airlocks in your boiler pipes.
  • Make sure that you fill any small cracks with a thin layer of filler and sand them down before you do any painting.

If there are any minor defects that can't be repaired, you could be a little sneaky and try to hide them. If you can hide the problem in a way that is not obvious, then the new owner will be able to as well, so you shouldn't feel too bad about doing it. For instance, if you have stains on the carpet, hide them with your furniture. Marks or damp patches on the wallpaper can be covered by moving your pictures, or hanging new ones. However, if expressly asked about these things, don't lie or try to hide them any further, you will eventually get found out.

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