Give Your Home Appliances A Good Cleaning Before Showing Your House For Sale
I seem to acquire used appliances regularly because they were left in a home we purchased. While these appliances are in usually in good condition and generally safe, they often need to be cleaned, and they need some extra attention to make them shine. Never underestimate the allure of nice, shiny appliances to a female home buyer! We've learned some basic tips over the years, and you might find they come in handy for your own appliances at home, as well as used appliances you acquire when you buy and sell homes as an investor.
We always start by cleaning every appliance thoroughly, which means giving up a few old, familiar toothbrushes and getting new ones! We defrost the refrigerator if there's any accumulated frost, which happens over time even in frost-free models, and we take care to use only cleansers that are labeled as being safe for use around food. Old toothbrushes come in handy for reaching into corners and scrubbing the rubber gaskets around refrigerator doors.
If necessary, the gaskets on most refrigerator doors can be replaced in order to improve energy efficiency. Most home appliances are finished with tough enamel paint and can be cleaned easily with plain, regular white vinegar. Grab your old toothbrush again and use it liberally to dissolve grease around stove knobs, backsplash and burner trays, leaving your stove looking almost as good as new. Buying replacement burner trays adds to the renewed appearance, too.
What follows is NOT for stainless steel appliances only for enamel. Get some spray wax and wipe it all over the top, front and sides of the stove and refrigerator, using a dry cloth. This tip will assure your used appliances look their best.
I should probably mention that we do not recommend using the popular stainless steel contact paper or stainless steel paint to refinish used appliances. While they cost considerably less than buying new appliances, it doesn't take long before they look worse than before either solution was applied, because paint flakes off and contact paper wrinkles. You're better off simply removing the old appliances and selling a home without any appliances than providing some that look tacky.
Now you know exactly how we take extra care with the appliances in our rental homes. Of course all older gas stoves with continuous pilot lights have been removed in order to avoid any possibility of a gas leak, and we inspect the electrical service to make sure it can accommodate future appliance installations. Use of extension cords is not advisable for any appliance.
So, thorough cleaning and waxing, along with basic safety precautions assure your tenants and buyers that used appliances are clean and safe.