Today’s tip of the day is from my 10 Low Cost Indoor Real Estate Fixes guide and focuses on ways you can improve your bottom line by paying attention to what’s beneath your feet. For additional guides please visit my Illinois Real Estate website.
1. Look Down, Look Down
This is an important factor for many buyers – what type of flooring you have and most importantly, what its condition is. I’ve literally seen buyers walk away from a home simply because the carpet was overly dirty. You can prevent negative appearance or outright rejection by making sure your floors look their best. If you have carpets, rent a steam cleaner for the weekend and put it to use. They are rather inexpensive and can really rejuvenate carpets, especially older carpets. Or better yet, hire a cleaning service like NLZ that has a truck-mount. This is great for heavy carpet soils and stains and will often get out much more than a do-it-yourself carpet steamer. If you have laminate or hardwood, sweep or vaccum (particularly if you have an hardwood floor with beveled edges that can collect dirt). Make sure all scuffs and marks are removed (I know it sounds weird but try rubbing them with a tennis ball and if that fails, try a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser) then use a floor cleaner and when it dries, a no-slip floor polish. Make sure you do this in advance of any showings or open houses – you don’t want the house to smell like the cleaning isle of your grocery store. If you have a tile floor, make sure they are freshly mopped prior to your showing. Grout can be a big turn-off if it’s stained. You can try a grout pen or bleach but if it’s heavily stained, you may need the help of a professional who can remove the stained grout. Make sure for showings you leave signs requesting your visitors remove their shoes or leave a basket of foot protectors. If it’s during the winter, leave a mat or towel by the door where visitors can put wet shoes and keep your floors looking clean.