Preparing to Sell Your Home

Home sale prep in Vancouver WA

Home sale prep in Vancouver WAPreparing to Sell Your Home

One-tenth of a second is all it takes for a first impression to be cemented in our brains. That first impression makes a lasting mental image from which all other thoughts and feelings are born.

When you’re preparing your home for the market, curb appeal is vital. You want prospective buyers to see themselves living there as soon as they pull up to the house. Last year we wrote about ways to boost your curb appeal. Now let’s dig deeper into preparing the exterior of your home.

The Portland and Vancouver real estate market
Is the Portland real estate market slowing down? Are we following the national trends? If you’re thinking about creating curb appeal, then you’re probably also researching the Portland real estate market.

Portland is a city of change and adaptability. Home buyers of all types are fulfilled by the Portland real estate market. They want sweeping mountain views, artist studios, urban farmland, spacious floor plans, and ADUs. The property want list can be endless. And Portland provides.

Preparing your home’s exterior
While people living in Portland, or moving to Rip City, might appreciate a certain collective appeal when it comes to lifestyle, people want clean sight lines around the home. Everything from your roof to your driveway influences curb appeal, so let’s take a top-down approach to preparing your home for the Portland and Vancouver home shoppers.

Clean your roof and gutters
No one wants to worry about a roof when they’re going through the home-buying process. Put prospective buyers at ease by clearing debris, moss, and stains from your roof. Your roof cleaner will also be able to notify you of any roof repairs that may be needed, possibly saving you when it comes to the official home roof inspection.

Roof cleaning goes hand-in-hand with gutter cleaning. Even if you don’t have tall trees near your gutters, leaves, dirt, and other debris find their way into your gutters. Cleaning the gutters will not only improve property value, but it will also alert you to any blockages and leaks.

Refresh your home’s exterior
Repainting a home is a big deal, so refreshing the exterior may be a more reasonable approach. Hire a professional, or DIY. Bob Vila, an American home hero, shares some great tips on how to maintain and clean your siding. While you’re working on the siding, wash those windows inside and out.

Declutter the outside your home
Gnomes are cool and shoes hanging from trees hold memories, but prospective buyers don’t want to connect with your oddities. Stash the recycling bins, store the bikes, pack away your gardening supplies, and pick up small bits of litter.

Make your front door sparkle
If your home doesn’t need a new front door, then it most definitely needs to be washed. If your front door is painted, mix dish soap and warm water to scrub the door, then dry with a rag towel. If you have a stained door, use wax or polish to make it shine. Inspect your screen door to see if it needs to be replaced before you wipe it down.

Add color to your porch or stoop
Lush greens, pops of in-season flowers, and complementing containers can make any home feel lively and well-loved. Search websites for ideas that fit the style of your home and landscape.

Mow the lawn and lay fresh mulch
If it’s summer, consider watering your lawn so it turns green. If it’s winter, you’ll probably need to get out there when the grass isn’t too wet and give it a trim. Shape your shrubs, pull weeds, and add some mulch to make everything look maintained and fresh.

Remember the deck, driveway, and sidewalk
Pressure washing is what will get everything looking fresh. A pressure washer removes moss, debris, old paint, stains, and graffiti. It’s a finishing touch to your property and is worth the investment.

Sound like a lot? Don’t worry, make a list of your specific tasks and start working. Call for estimates from professionals and tackle the rest yourself. With this guide, the exterior of your home will be ready for the next Portland homebuyer.

Clean the Slate – Tile Roof Maintenance

Tile Roofing in Vancouver WA

Tile Roofing in Vancouver WA

Clean the Slate – Tile Roof Maintenance in Portland

A brief history of tile roofs

Tile roofs became popular in 16th century America as part of fire code safety in densely populated cities. By the 1900s we saw a decline in tile roofing, as lighter materials that were faster to produce took over.

Tile roofs today

Modern roof tiles are sometimes made of Portland cement (plus sand and water), while other tiles can also be made from sand (these do require an asphalt roof underneath).

Out here in the Pacific Northwest, we see plenty of homes with the distinct terra-cotta orange clay tile roofs. They always catch the eye and stand out in any neighborhood, whether the sky is overcast or blue. Other tile roofs in the Portland and Vancouver metro areas are the cement variety and come in an array of colors and styles.

Besides curb appeal and fire safety, clay and concrete tile roofs are made to last.

In the Portland, Oregon area, roof tiles can last over 50 years as long as moss, mildew, and lichen prevention is in place.

When tile roofs become brittle due to age and weather, they can break easily. Roof tiles also break when fallen tree branches hit the roof and with sharp temperature changes, especially if the tile was already cracked. Replacing broken tiles is necessary since water can seep through the cracks, causing damage.

Replacement tiles can be costly and if the roof is very old, tiles may no longer be mass produced. This requires a special tile order that is expensive and takes time.

What about tile roof maintenance in Portland?

Safety, first.
Anyone walking on a tile roof needs to be a professional — trained and skilled in how to maneuver on fragile tiles. That includes people who will be up there to clean windows, trim trees, and especially roof cleaners.

Gutters and downspouts.
Gutters and downspouts that are filled with moss and debris can cause water overflow to move under the tiles, resulting in mold, rot, and deterioration. A tile roof requires a reinforced roof deck, and replacing or repairing this because of water damage is costly.

Roof valleys.
And remember tile roof valleys. This is where roof planes meet to form a valley that allows rain to wash down the roof. When the roof valleys are filled with debris and moss, water dams build up causing water to spread under the tiles resulting in water damage.

HOA regulations.
If your tile roof is in an HOA development then you are required to maintain your roof on an annual basis. When it comes to tile roofs, DIY is not recommended. Hiring a professional who is trained and experienced with the intricacies of tile roofing is a must.

Homeowners insurance.
Your homeowner’s insurance will not renew your policy if there is too much moss on your roof. If your tile roof has damage due to moss, homeowners insurance will not cover these damages. Moss is considered an avoidable event due to improper maintenance or negligence, something that is prevented with annual maintenance, and therefore insurance companies leave it up to you to pay for the damage.

How we handle tile roof cleaning

  • We ensure all workers, plus their equipment, are under the weight limit for a tile roof edge. This prevents breakage when we are cleaning tile roof tiles.
  • Mildew, lichen, and moss can live on tile roofing materials. To remove these unwanted visitors, we use low psi (around 2,000) with a turbo nozzle tip.
  • Gutter cleaning is usually needed to prevent water damage underneath the tiles, and we always include this service in our estimate.
  • Ground cleanup is often the most overlooked, yet vital, aspect of tile roof cleaning. That’s because of the amount of debris and dirt that washes down the house to the ground. We ensure your home’s walls and the landscape looks just like it did when we arrived.
  • Most tile roofs in the Portland-metro area average 3-5 broken tiles. We can replace those tiles if you have them on hand.

A tile roof is a lifetime investment and can be a pretty spectacular aspect of any home in the Pacific Northwest. When it’s time to clean your tile roof the right way, trust professional roof cleaners to do the job with care and attention.

5 Ideas to Boost Your Home’s Curb Appeal

Curb appeal in Vancouver WA

Curb appeal in Vancouver WA5 Ideas to Boost Your Home’s Curb Appeal

We’ve all had the experience of passing a home that looks gorgeous and has great curb appeal. There was just something or many things about it that struck you and now every time you’re in the area you can’t help but to look at it.

What’s even better than admiring a well decorated home? Making your home look even better. If you’re into the DIY side of life, here are 5 things you can do to boost your home’s curb appeal…

1) Take Care of your Landscaping

This may seem obvious but mowing your lawn and planting can go a long way to making your home look spectacular. Often people think that landscaping can be expensive but if you’re creative, thoughtful and consistent it doesn’t have to be!

When landscaping, make sure to pick a theme or style like evergreen, Mediterranean or tropical. A personal favorite of the author’s is Zen garden!

2) Upgrade your Front Door

This isn’t emphasized enough when it comes to curb appeal. Think of your home as your kingdom and the front door its gates. Whenever someone is walking by or enters your home, your front door is often the first thing to be noticed.

Not only does it make your home look great and attractive but having a nice front door can also increase its value. A recent study has shown that upgrading the front door to a house increased its value by $8,000! So if you’re thinking it may be expensive you can expect to get your money back.

3) Organize and Hide Unsightly Objects

If you have items like hoses, garden pots and tires (hopefully not) lying around your yard clean them up and put them in their rightful places. You can also hide other things in your yard like A/C units, trashcans and recycling bins with surrounding them with wooden screens or panels.

You should try to make everything blend together and leave nothing sticking out like a sore thumb.

4) Update your Windows

Make your windows pop by adding shutters, window boxes for plants and trim. These things are easy to build or buy from the store and install. All can be designed to your liking and provide a finished look to your home.

5) Update Your Mailbox

This tip is simple but can make a lot of difference. If you have an old and warn out mailbox then it’s time for an upgrade. Go for something that really matches your home and its style.

The Bottom Line

Taking care of the little things can go a long way for your home’s exterior and curb appeal. Start today by following the tips laid out above and make your home the one you admire.