stained cupboards, and imported Wolf appliances that money can buy. At some point, very high-end appliances can even be a turn-off either because the buyer is not familiar with them or is too familiar and knows just how hard it is to get parts when they fail. Basements are also tricky. A spacious rec room is undoubtedly a draw, but often will not be counted as living space in an appraisal, nor in the square footage in the property listing (most homes' square footage is based on levels above grade). People also tend to have their own ideas of what a rec room should look like. If your basement is still unfinished or you plan to leave in less than five years, it is best to either leave it alone or simply put up walls along the outside of the space. Then you can install cheap but attractive carpet and inexpensive drop ceilings, allowing the buyers to customize to their own tastes. It is also essential that you do not overlook the basic systems. For example, when people look at a home, they do not expect to find leaky pipes, a non-functioning furnace, or electrical outlets that pop a breaker as soon as someone plugs something into an outlet. These and other issues like mould, a leaky roof, or stained and damaged carpet will generally turn off a buyer, regardless of how amazing the kitchen and bathrooms may be. Some of these, especially less visible issues like an aging furnace or water heater, may seem like a waste of money if you plan to sell soon. But they are critically important. A buyer may overlook such issues on an initial walk-through. But even if they make an offer and you accept it, it might not be the end of the story. Appraisers and inspectors will almost certainly be coming through the home as part of the process, and issues like these can derail a sale. An appraiser will notice


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