For all homeowners, adhering to a regular maintenance schedule and making repairs as soon as they are needed are effective ways to avoid costly disasters. When your home is on the market, however, it is particularly important to resolve problems before they escalate. Damage to the appearance or structural integrity of the property is every home seller’s worst nightmare.
Although there are some fixes – like updating appliances or adding a fresh coat of paint – that are not urgent, other maintenance issues could become dangerous if not addressed. Here are a few home repairs that you need to deal with as soon as possible:
- A leaky roof. If you’ve noticed your ceiling leaking when it rains, your roof is most likely in need of repair. Not only is a leaky roof a nuisance, but it can cause mold growth and structural damage, and could even start a fire if water makes contact with electrical wiring. At the very least, you could face water stains on the ceiling or walls when trying to show your house – a glaring red flag for buyers. Even if your roof is not yet leaking, it may be a good idea to have it inspected for problems like damaged or missing shingles. Storms and wind can compromise shingles, causing leaks and other problems in the future.
- Faulty electrical wiring. Seemingly harmless problems like flickering lights or outlets that are warm to the touch may indicate serious threats to your home. If you notice these signs, it may mean that your electrical system is overtaxed or the home is wired improperly – which could cause an electrical fire. Call an electrician immediately.
- Clogged gutters. Keeping your gutters clean may seem overwhelming, particularly if your home is surrounded by trees. However, if the gutters become full of leaves and other debris, they will be unable to serve their intended purpose of directing rainwater away from the home and preventing damage to the walls and foundation. In addition, prospective buyers may notice the clogged gutters and assume that your home is not properly maintained. Avoid these problems by cleaning out gutters twice a year, and then using a hose to ensure that water properly flows down the drainpipes and away from your home.
- Pest invasions. Common insects and other pests can cause significant damage to your home. For example, insects like termites can devour wood framing, while rodents can chew through insulation or even wires, creating a risk of fire. Furthermore, the waste left behind by pests may be hazardous to the health of the home’s occupants. If you see, hear, or find damage from critters, assume that you may have an infestation and contact a pest control company.
- Gas leaks. A gas leak is an imminent emergency, since it could lead to fire or an explosion. If you notice a rotten egg-like odor – particularly in the lowest level of your home – get out of the house and call your gas company immediately.