“What doesn’t bankrupt us makes us stronger,” writes Josh Garskof, a serial remodeler and contributing writer and/or editor for Money magazine, “This Old House,” and Martha Stewart Living. Philadelphia Main Line property owners who have attempted a remodel anytime recently are likely to find the humor – and the truth – in his wisecrack.
With the spring selling season just over the horizon, this would be about the right time for Main Line – area homeowners who are considering bringing their property to market to finalize plans and firm up any remodeling arrangements. Whether the project is just to freshen up a bathroom or re-landscape a whole backyard, Garskof offers the following tips:
Plan to Overspend – Yes, we all hate to acknowledge it, but surprises happen with predictable regularity. If you don’t allow for that cushion, you may find yourself in a tight spot when your contractor discovers a missing drainage system under the house.
Magnet Sweep – If you’re planning exterior work, have your team do a magnet sweep of the outdoor space when they are finished. Dozens of old, rusty nails can find their way into your lawn and into the mulch – nothing you want bare feet to encounter when summer comes (and the last thing you want potential visitors or agents stepping on during Broker’s Tour!)
Permits – Be sure to secure copies of your township’s code clearances from your contractor before you issue the final payment. It’s one way to help ensure the work is safe, up to code – and to have the paperwork handled when a sale is being finalized.
PA Home Improvement Consumer Protection Act – Contractors in Pennsylvania who perform $5,000 or more in home improvements per year must register with the Attorney General’s office. You can check with the Attorney General’s office by visiting their Registered Contractors Web Site or by calling their toll-free hotline @ 1-888-520-6680.
If you are preparing for spring and plan to do some remodeling before bringing your Main Line property to market, Lone and I hope you will feel free to consult us before spending a single dollar. We’re here to help our clients save money where they don’t have to spend it -- and make money where they can. Especially when it comes to property improvements on The Main Line, knowing today’s homebuyers can make a real difference. Email us today!