Add These To-Dos to Your Presale Checklist

Homes for sale in Berkeley County, WV

Before booking your market evaluation appointment to discuss listing strategy, here are a few things you can do to prepare for a speedy sale.

Handle Repairs – Take care of easily fixed repairs that may be potential red flags for buyers. Common quick fixes include repairing drywall, repainting walls and oiling hinges.

Declutter – Take this opportunity to get rid of those seldom used itemsthat are cluttering up your home. Remember, it costs to move them so now is the time to let them go!

Start Packing – Store out-of-season clothing, sports gear and small appliances you know you won’t need before the move. Too much stuff crammed into cupboards and closets will make your home seem small.

Downsize Furniture – Consider removing extra or large pieces of furniture that make your home look smaller. You may want to stage specific rooms to highlight potential uses for the space.

Depersonalize – Tuck away family photos, collectibles and any other personal items. It’s important to make your home a “blank canvas” for potential buyers to imagine themselves in.

Check Curb AppealPlant colorful annuals along sidewalks and in containers, and remove any debris or clutter from around your home. Many buyers will preview a home from the outside before deciding whether or not to schedule a showing.

Homes for sale in Berkeley County, WV

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9 Ways to a Greener Home

Homes for sale in Berkeley, WV

Trying to reduce your environmental footprint? Consider integrating these green design principles into your home.

Net Zero: The idea is to balance the energy your home uses with an equal amount of renewable energy created. Not to be confused with living off the grid, net-zero homes may use energy from the grid one day and then sell an equal amount back the next.

  • Solar Power – Find out if solar power makes sense for your home with this solar cost/savings calculator.
  • Solar Hot Water – Upgrade your hot water tank to a solar system for considerably less than solar power.
  • Real-Time Monitoring – Install a smart energy monitoring system that lets you optimize your energy savings.

Energy Efficiency: Net zero works by minimizing the energy requirements of the home. This is done by eliminating costly energy leaks and switching to high-efficiency systems.

  • High-Efficiency Heating – Upgrade your heating or cooling system to a high-efficiency system.
  • Energy-Efficient Windows – Install energy-efficient windows to minimize heat losses or gains.
  • Insulation Upgrade insulation to support your heating and cooling system.

Water Conservation: Strictly speaking, conserving water does not contribute to your net-zero profile, but it does follow the same principle of minimizing environmental impact by reducing consumption.

  • Low-Flow Water – Install low-flow showerheads and faucets, and switch to dual-flush toilets.
  • Rainwater Collection – Conserve water by harvesting rainwater for use in the garden.
  • Xeriscaping – Minimize your water requirements by planting drought-tolerant plants.

8 Steps to Prepare for Shifting to a Smaller Space

Homes for sale in Berkeley, WV

Shifting to a smaller space means scaling down your stuff. If you only have room for half or even a third of your belongings in your new space, some major downsizing is in order. Use these tips to make the process less intimidating and stressful:

Start Early – Give yourself three to six months to gradually scale down your stuff to avoid the temptation to pack up everything during the last-minute rush as you count down to moving day.

Avoid Overwhelm – Pace yourself! Set aside an hour or two every day to go through each drawer, closet and box to decide what to get rid of.

One Space at a Time – Instead of whirling through the entire house pulling things out of closets and dumping boxes, be systematic. Always finish one area before moving onto the next.

Sort Smart – Use the three-bin system: label three bins as “keep,” “sell” and “donate” to allow you to quickly organize items as you go through each room.

Be Ruthless – Think hard about what you actually need, especially in rooms like the kitchen that tend to accumulate duplicates. Then, purge everything else.

Plan Your Space – Get a copy of the new floor plan, and measure and place your furniture to see what you can realistically fit.

Donate to Charities – Find out what your favorite local charities will take as donations. Most list on their websites what they are currently in need of and what they absolutely do not want.

Sell What You Can – Take valuables to an antiques dealer or auction,list desirable everyday items online and hold a garage sale for smaller household goods. You might even turn a profit from your move!

Homes for sale in Berkeley, WV

5 Potential Gaps in Your Insurance Coverage

Did you know that despite the name, all-perils or comprehensive coverage insurance policies do not cover every possible risk?

Often homeowners need to add special addendums or supplement with a separate named perils policy to fill the gaps in their home insurance.

Better to find the gaps in your coverage now instead of when your claim is denied. Here are some options to consider.

Broad Coverage Exclusions — Check your current policy for specific exclusions. Common ones include war, earthquake, flood, hurricane,wear and tear, plumbing problems and government action.

Homes for sale in Berkeley, WV

Limitations on Temporary Housing — Find out if there are limits on how much or how long your policy will cover temporary housing while you repair or rebuild your home.

Replacement Cost — Confirm your coverage is adequate in the event your home is completely destroyed; policies often place a cap on replacement cost. Find out from a local builder if there have been substantial increases in materials and labor costs.

Changes to Building Codes — Consider adding ordinance and law coverage to avoid situations in which you aren’t covered for required upgrades to undamaged parts of your home to meet the current building codes.

Extended Absence Coverage — Review your policy to find out if your extended vacation could potentially void your policy. You may need to take additional steps to protect against damage while you are away or obtain special unoccupied property insurance.

Homes for sale in Berkeley, WV

Luxurious Home Spa Ideas Inspired by 5-Star Hotels

Imagine having a luxurious spa retreat in your own home inspired bythe best spas in the world. Spa luxury evokes images of tranquil colors, crisp linens, sparkling elegance and, of course, personal pampering.

Here’s how to design your own luxurious home spa.

Homes for sale in Berkeley, WV

The Design Inspiration — Stick with a neutral or pastel color palette, integrating a variety of textures and materials, like an ultra-smooth glass wall tile with tumbled round rocks for the shower.

The Spa Centerpiece — Use an oversized bathtub as the centerpiece of your home spa. Options range from air baths to more traditional whirlpool baths with massaging jets. Consider upgrading to include music or chromatherapy.

The Shower Experience — Turn your daily shower into a full spa experience with a relaxing raindrop shower head, massaging body sprays and soothing aromatherapy steam.

The Mood Lighting — Create different moods with dimmable lighting. Don’t forget to create his and her vanities complete with a shaving mirror and makeup lighting.

The Fireplace — Give your spa-inspired bathroom the feeling of warmth and comfort with a fireside lounge area where you can enjoy a glass of wine or relax with a book between spa treatments.

The Spa Service — Don’t forget to include plenty of open shelving for displaying neatly rolled towels and other spa necessities. If space allows, integrate comfortable benches for sitting.

The Extra Little Touches — Pamper yourself with extra spa details like a heated tile floor, towel warmer and plenty of conveniently hung hooks to hang your plush spa robe while enjoying the amenities.

Homes for sale in Berkeley, WV