Maui Real Estate

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7 Things You Won’t Need To Do This October If You Live On Maui

By Bob Vila

Summer’s gone and autumn’s knocking at the door. The month of October brings colorful leaves, cool breezes and Halloween trick-or-treaters. It’s also the perfect time to finish outdoor maintenance projects, brush up on your fire safety knowledge and winterize your lawn before the cold temperatures really set in.

Seal and insulate

While temperatures drop outside, you can still stay warm and keep your energy bills low withproper insulation. Attics are one of the biggest culprits when it comes to winter energy loss, so prep yours for winter by installing loose fill or batt insulation.

Redo the mudroom

October means it’s time to pull out the boots and jackets — but you better have a place to storeyour wet and muddy outdoor apparel. If you have a mudroom, update it with a fresh coat of paint or an added storage bench. If you don’t have one, place a boot rack in the entryway and clean out the hall closet to make room for extra coats.

Get the fireplace ready

Don’t wait until it’s so cold you’re ready to start up the fire: You’ll want to prepare your fireplaceearly for regular use. Check your chimney for chips or cracks, and make any necessary repairs. Inspect the door gaskets for a tight seal, then clean soot buildup or call in a professional chimney sweeper.

Winterize the lawn

If you tend to your lawn now before it goes dormant for the winter, it will grow back better than ever in spring. Spread a thin layer of fertilizer — too much will burn the grass — and fill in thin patches with “cool weather” grass seed. Also be sure to aerate your lawn to prevent thatch buildup and keep air, moisture and nutrients flowing to your lawn’s roots.

Reverse your fans

You’ve probably heard heat rises. That’s why it’s a good idea to change the direction of your ceiling fan so that it turns clockwise, thereby pushing hot air down and helping it circulate throughout the room. This is simple to do with newer models of ceiling fans, which usually have a switch to reverse the blade direction.

Clean your carpets

Carpeting can harbor a lot of dust, dirt and even mold. As you seal up your house for winter, make sure you’re retreating to a clean environment. Give your carpets and rugs a deep steam cleaning, or hire a professional to do so. If your carpets are beyond repair, you might want to replace them — or consider hardwood or vinyl floors.

Check for peeling paint

Inspect your home exterior for damage to the siding, foundation and paint. Correct peeling paintbefore the cold and ice sets in. If you don’t, those bare patches could be susceptible to water damage and cost you lots more in repairs down the line.

Install smoke detectors

October is Fire Prevention Month, so take time to educate yourself and your family about cold-weather fire risks. Install smoke detectors on each floor of your house, and test them monthly. Additionally, keep a few fire extinguishers throughout the house, especially in the kitchen and near the fireplace.

Clean up fall leaves

There’s more than one way to clean up fall leaves: Mulch them with your mower, use a lawn vacuum or invest in ergonomic rakes or leaf scoops. As long as your trees are healthy, their fall leaves are great food for your compost pile. You can even add oak leaves in moderation, despite their acidic reputation.

Pick out a pumpkinPick A Pumpkin

With Halloween on the horizon, pumpkins are everywhere — maybe even in your backyard garden. Whether you paint them, carve them or leave them bare, they’ll really welcome fall when placed on your doorstep. Power tool fans can get be part of the fun with a Dremel or other pumpkin carving tool.


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Does Your Home Have Too Much Personality?

Many sellers love their homes. They’ve made some of their most important memories there, and their home is literally where their heart is. When these homeowners took on improvements, from painting rooms to kitchen and bath renovations, they likely did it with the idea of adding “personality.” And then, when it’s time to sell, those same homeowners sit across the dining room table from their real estate agent and wonder why, after three months, their home hasn’t sold.Too Much Personality-

What went wrong? Usually, it’s because the home has too much personality. The problem with personality is that buyers see you, and not themselves, in the home you’re hoping to sell. If you’re serious about selling your home and you want to achieve the highest value, you need to make the home as neutral as possible. Here’s how.

Remove family photos, heirlooms, diplomas and personal items

Buyers don’t want to feel like they’re walking through someone else’s house. They want to feel that they’re walking through a home that could potentially be theirs. The more neutral the home, the easier it will be for them to imagine themselves there. As proud as you may be of your college degree or of little Susie’s first footprints, they don’t need to be on display when your home is for sale. The process of putting these items away may bring up emotions, but that’s part of the process. Cost to do this: $0.

Repaint rooms with personality

You may have taken some time to choose the deep red color for your dining room, the heavy oak paneling in the family room or Johnnie’s jungle wallpaper. While these were personal choices for you and may have served your time there well, they may be off-putting to a potential buyer for any number of reasons. Before you sell, paint these rooms a neutral color and take down the heavy paneling. These are not big or expensive projects, but the return can be huge. Cost to do this: less than $1,000 depending on the size and number of rooms.

Show the rooms as they should be used

The room off the kitchen is unmistakably the dining room. But if you use it as a home office, it throws a buyer off. Likewise, if you’ve used a small bedroom as your child’s toy room/your closet spillover, the same thing will happen. In the visual age of the Internet, Instagram and Facebook, people need to visualize what each room is. Some people simply don’t have the imagination. No matter how obvious it is that the dining room is the dining room or the third room upstairs is the third bedroom, the buyer needs to see it used that way, not the way you use it. Cost to do this: $0.

Detach yourself emotionally

Ultimately, when you go to sell, it’s time to stop thinking of your property as your home. Instead, think of it as an investment, and you need to get the best return on your investment possible.

To do this, you must turn your home into a product on the market. This means you must emotionally detach from the home you love. If you’re not ready to do that, you may not be ready to sell yet. You may not want to take out the personality you added, and that you love. That’s OK, but be aware it will probably result in a smaller pool of interested buyers and a lower sales price. And the more neutral you can make the home, the wider the base of potential buyers you’ll have.

For more ideas about how to sell your home faster and how to add more value to it, call me at (808) 870-7162