Your Spring Checklist
May is the perfect time to prepare your house, inside and out, for warmer days and more time spent outdoors. Whether it's cleaning the grill, maintaining air conditioners, organizing the garage or touching up paint, each item on our checklist this month will help you get your home ready so you can sit back and enjoy the good stuff — barbecues with family and friends, a gentle breeze flowing through the screen door or the simple pleasure of sitting on your porch and watching the world go by.
· Service air conditioners
· Touch Up Paint - Interior, exterior or paint a room for a new look
· Clean or replace entry mats
· Check safety devices - smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, _+ check expiration dates on fire extinguishers
· Clean the washer and dryer
· Wash curtains and slipcovers
· Stain decks and fencing
· Clean the grill - thoroughly
· Clean out the shed and garage - throw out anything you haven't used in years
· Enhance your curb appeal - Do 1 small thing & be amazed
Pretty up Your Porch
Experts say potential buyers make a split-second decision the moment they pull up next to your house. If your home exudes curb appeal, you’re already more than halfway to "Sold." But if it doesn't, you’ve got an uphill battle convincing potential buyers to buy. Your porch plays a huge role in setting the scene. Even if you're not planning to sell this year, a porch makeover will enhance enjoyment of your own home. Want to put a smile on your face anyways.
Hide your recycling boxes
Add easy to care for Plants
Update your hardware - mail box or numbers
Paint your door
Upgrade your lighting
Add a seat and/or a cute bistro table
OTHER SMALL TIPS
• Toss any trash or flyers that have found their way onto your porch steps
• Sweep dirt, dust or leaves from the porch
• Replace light bulbs as needed
• Clean smudges from hardware or glass
• Water and deadhead plants in porch planters or urns
• Straighten doormat
How to Create an Outdoor Space
Create the space
With only four short months – at most – of warm weather, we Canadians know how to delight in every outdoor minute, but do we take advantage of every inch of outdoor space, too? No matter the size, think of your yard as an extension of the indoors. Picture the components that make up your living and dining rooms: floors, walls, furniture, rugs and decorative accessories. But how do you create these spaces under the sun?
Questions to ask before you buy
1 Consider your needs and lifestyle. How do you use your outdoor space? Do you entertain outside during the summer? Do you have kids?
2 Be realistic about the space you have. Do you have a large backyard or a small balcony? Do you have enough room for a complete outdoor living and dining room set or just a small bistro table and chairs?
3 Go out with a plan – make a list. What do you need? How much are you willing to spend? Are you starting from scratch or updating what you already have.
5 key outdoor staging tips that won’t break the bank
All of these have a Rate of Return of 80% to 100% ! ! !
1 Front lawn
• The most cost effective way to spruce up your front lawn is to cut and trim it regularly, using a fertilizer and weed control program and topping off any bare patches with dirt and grass seed. Average cost: $10 to $100
• If your lawn is really not in good condition, you can completely re-sod it. SURPISE ! An Average cost: of just $300 to $1,000.
2 Front door, lighting and porch
• Your front entrance needs to be warm and inviting. Try putting a fresh coat of paint on your door, using a strong accent colour. Make sure the colour you select blends well with the fixed elements of your home.
• Add a pot of flowers for colour or in the winter, use an urn with greenery. Average cost: $20 to $200
• If your door and lighting are out dated or in need of a repair, replace them.
• Add a bistro table or a couple of chairs if you have space on your porch. Average cost: $800 to $1000
• Make sure a potential buyer views a well cared for, low maintenance property. Clean out all the weeds, do any necessary trimming and add some coloured mulch. Average cost: $30 to $60
• If your garden is either non-existent or is very sparse, make sure that the flowers, shrubs or trees that you add are more mature to give a finished look. Average cost: $200
• Your driveway covers a large percentage of your front yard so make sure it’s in good condition. If it’s paved, consider adding a top coat of sealer. Average cost: $50 to $200
• If the driveway is gravel, consider paving, installing interlocking stone or stamped concrete. Average cost: $1,500 to $5,000
• Your backyard should be appealing and inviting for entertaining outside. If you currently have a deck or patio, pressure wash and stain the deck in a clear coat or neutral semi-transparent stain. Adding pots of flowers around the deck or patio will give it more appeal. Average cost: $100 to $300
• If your deck or patio is not in good condition, repair or replace it. If you currently have nothing in your backyard, create the outdoor entertaining space buyers are looking for. Average cost: $2,000 to $5,000
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