Essential Home Repairs to Make Before Listing Your Lake of the Ozarks Property

Dated: January 20 2024

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Essential Home Repairs to Make Before Listing Your Property

When it comes to selling your home, ensuring you get the best value for your property requires some proactive measures. Real estate experts unanimously agree on the importance of addressing specific issues before listing your home for sale. Here are the top problems that you should absolutely repair:

1. Water Damage and Mold

One of the first things to tackle is any form of water damage, including visible signs of mold or mildew. I always recommend homeowners prioritize fixing any remnants of water damage. Water damage not only poses a significant problem for a home but also raises concerns for potential buyers about the overall condition of the property. Cosmetic repairs after a repair has been made are a necessary final step! Water stains after a roof have been repaired or leaking dishwasher has been replaced can create unneeded stigma in the eyes of a buyer.  Signs of water damage trigger worries about hidden issues, whether proper repairs were made, the presence of mold, and why the homeowner didn't address such a crucial matter. Condo owners this means you too! If an upstairs neighbor had a leaky drain that caused a water-spot on your sealing fix the stain! Buyers may think the complex is not managed well allows items to fall into disrepair.

2. Faulty Smoke Detectors

This is an easy one, but many times is overlooked! Safety is paramount for all occupants, whether you're selling or buying a home. It's crucial to ensure that smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, and radon systems are in working order. I always emphasize the importance of safety and recommend following local guidelines and codes for installing and testing these devices.

3. Busted Plumbing

Plumbing plays a crucial role in a safe and functional home. You would think this is obvious but I have gone on listing appointments where a small leak under a sink has resulted in a bucket being placed in the cabinet rather than the pipe being fixed! Addressing leaks promptly is essential, as they can lead to more damage and increased water bills if left unchecked. Always rely on a licensed plumber for any plumbing repairs. The Real Estate Professionals at Marr/Elliott & Associates can make recommendations of qualified service people to help you address repairs! 

4. Malfunctioning HVAC Systems

A functioning HVAC system is a must when selling your home, as it directly impacts comfort and livability. I always stress that regular maintenance is key to avoiding major repairs. Simple steps like changing HVAC filters every 30 to 90 days and scheduling biannual tune-ups can ensure your HVAC system remains in top shape. Keeping records of the regular service is always a plus! Buyers will appreciate documentation that a potential "big-ticket" item has been regularly maintained.

5. Structural Issues

Issues that imply structural problems, such as leaning walls, sagging roofs, and cracks in walls, ceilings, and fireplaces, can deter potential buyers. Addressing these structural concerns is crucial as they suggest significant issues lurking behind the walls. This can be a very large expense if the seller cannot afford repairs at times a home can be sold "As-is" with all proper disclosures made. Material defects are required to be disclosed to potential buyers but remember, I can still sell your home! Sometimes structural repairs can be negotiated to be paid for at closing, that way payment will come from a sellers proceeds rather than upfront before a home is listed.

6. Foundation Problems

A solid foundation is the bedrock of a good home. I advise checking for cracks wider than 1/8-inch or those actively expanding, as these could indicate shifting in the ground around your home. Consult a foundation expert when significant damage is identified, as foundation problems can be a red flag for buyers. Always remember small hairline cracks can be very normal but its important to rely on an expert to make that assessment.

7. Roof Damage

A poorly maintained roof can lead to extensive problems for your home. Look for missing, worn, or damaged shingles when inspecting the roof from the ground. Trim trees that overhang gutters or rooflines to prevent further damage. Check with your insurance provider if weather damage is present. Many times repairs can be paid for by your homeowners insurance with you only paying a deductible rather that out of pocket! 

8. Bulbs and Light Fixtures

Fixing broken light fixtures is a simple yet effective way to enhance your home's appeal. Ensuring that all lightbulbs are working not only brightens rooms for staging but also assures buyers that the electrical system is in good condition. This is easy and can make a very big difference on how well your home shows once we list it!

9. Broken Appliances

Nonworking appliances can raise concerns among buyers about the overall maintenance of the home. While replacing a broken appliance is relatively affordable, in some cases, buyers may prefer to choose their replacements. Offering an allowance or price reduction can be a solution for addressing broken appliances but this is not always the best choice. Call me and I can help you decide!

10. Dock Permits and Dock Electrical

This one is important for waterfront properties but specifically Lake of the Ozarks. Buyers will want to know that the permits are current and the dock electrical is up to current code! Visit this helpful page from Ameren Missouri and check out their recommendations and standards. I can suggest a qualified electrician to address any updates needed!  Many people choose to have the local fire department inspect beforehand to get ahead of any items that could be gigged by an inspector.

By proactively addressing  key issues, you can increase the appeal and value of your home when listing it for sale. Prioritizing these repairs ensures a smoother selling process and instills confidence in potential buyers. Call me Sophia Marr with Marr/Elliott & Associates at RE/MAX Lake of the Ozarks and I can guide you though the process! (573) 692-4082. I am a Certified Residential Remodeling Specialist so I can recommend vendors, service people and local experts to help in any repairs or updates!

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Sophia Marr

Sophia Marr with Marr/Elliott & Associates is a top producing Realtor® in the Lake of the Ozarks area with a true heart for service to clients. She came to the Real Estate industry with a degree in P....

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