The months of October through February are brutally tough on vacant homes. Most of the time people take the “it won’t happen to me” attitude and decide to leave things up to chance. If your house is listed on the market, and it is vacant, it might be a good idea to do a few simple tasks to protect your home from the winter weather.
Before we start the countdown through all 7, it is important to remember that having a list is extremely beneficial to protect yourself from missing things. If you are wanting to sell your home in today’s real estate market, you will have to make sure it is as presentable as possible during all showings.
1. Plumbing -
Plumbing is the first step because it is the most important. A vacant home left with water in the pipes during 5 degree weather is a pipe bomb waiting to happen. Make sure to turn the water off OUTSIDE the property, and open all faucets, drain all tubs, sinks, toilets, appliances, everything! You will want the water to be emptied out of the house.
If your property is vacant, having a gas line on is pretty much pointless. But, if you are looking to keep the internal temp at a reasonable level (hopefully above freezing). Make sure the water heater gas line is turned to off.
3. Unplug Appliances-
If you are not there, and it is during the winter, it is recommended that you either shut the main electric completely off, or unplug appliances. If there is a showing and the buyers want to know if they work, just let them know they are unplugged for winterization purposes.
4. Outdoor Furniture-
Since the home is vacant, the exterior should be as well. Outdoor furniture left in the elements soon becomes an eye sore and decreases the curb appeal of the home. It is the best option to just store the outdoor furniture, especially during the winter months.
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