If you’re selling a home, there are several things you can do that can help increase curb appeal. Good curb appeal means more potential buyers when your house goes on the market.
However, exterior cleaning can seem insurmountable if you’re unprepared. But getting prepared doesn’t have to be very complicated if you’re organized. But where do you begin?
Keep reading if you’re overwhelmed about cleaning your home’s exterior. We give you a complete rundown on exterior cleaning, from prepping your home to pro cleaning tips.
Prepping Your Home for Exterior Cleaning
Before you can begin, your first task will be preparing your home for cleaning. Don’t worry; it’s not as complicated as you might think. Let’s take a look at what you need to do:
1. Choose the Correct Day
As much as we’d like to get the task out of the way, you need to be selective about the day you choose to clean. You want to select a warm day with as little wind as possible. Choosing a windy day can wreak havoc on tasks requiring tools like a high-pressure hose, causing spray to come back on you as you work.
2. Put up Protection
Depending on what cleaning tasks you expect to complete, you need to lay down some protection before you begin. First, you want to ensure windows and doors are closed and sealed up.
Cover all vents, electrical outlets, and light fixtures. If you have any furniture in the way, now is the time to move them out of the way. Finally, cover any plants that you don’t want to be damaged.
3. Remove Small Stains
Even if you’re using a high-pressure hose, you want to go around your home and, using soap and water, clean all the more minor stains that you can reach by hand. It helps save water if you’re not using the pressure washer for everything.
4. Remove Mold and Mildew
Finally, using either a homemade mold removal solution or store-bought cleaning products, go around your home and scrub any mildew you see until it’s gone. Make sure you wear proper protection when working with bleach.
- Pro Tip: For tougher stains, create a cleaning solution by combining 1/4 pound of oxygen bleach, one gallon of water, and 1/8th cup of dishwashing liquid.
Tools and Equipment Needed
Now that you know what to do to prep your home, let’s look at some of the equipment and tools you’ll need for everything. Of course, you may not use everything, so only gather what you think you’ll need or what you have access to.
- Garden hose
- Various cleaning solutions
- Brushes and scrubbers
- Plastic and tarps
- Pressure washer
- Vacuum cleaner
The first job you want to tackle is cleaning the walls. This is where you may want to use a high-pressure hose or a pressure washer to do some of the heavy work for you.
If you’ve never used one before, test the washer on a small section of your home before you begin. This is especially essential if you have a particularly old house that may be weakened in areas. If the pressure washer causes any damage, switch to something less powerful, like a standard garden hose.
When you are using the pressure washer, you want to ensure you’re working in a downwards direction. If you go in the opposite direction, you risk pushing the dirt into any of your home’s siding seams or cracks.
Cleaning Windows & Window Screens
No one enjoys cleaning windows, especially if you have a large house; however, if you get some family members to help, the job can go much faster. Therefore, when looking at how to clean exterior windows, you want to start with a cleaning solution made for windows.
Spray the solution onto the glass and use bunches of newspaper to wipe the solution off the windows. When choosing a window cleaner, get one that advertises no drips, making your cleaning job much quicker.
If you have window screens, you can use your vacuum cleaner to remove dirt, pollen, and dust. To clean, first, remove the screen from your window and run your vacuum over each side of the screen.
It’s essential you use a soft-bristle brush attachment so as not to damage the delicate screen material. If you have heavy build-up on the screens, you can use a soft detergent and water to wash them lightly.
Roof and Gutters
Your roof and gutters can gather debris very quickly, depending on the season, so you want to give them a good clean before any prospective buyers come to view your home.
Using a ladder, climb to where you can see and reach the gutters inside and clean out any leaves, dirt, etc. You can use a brush to get the dirt out if needed.
Not performing regular gutter cleaning is one way you risk damage to your home, as wet debris can keep moisture where it can penetrate the roof if left unattended.
Outdoor Light Fixtures
Finally, it’s time to clean your light fixtures. Light fixtures are dust magnets, so it’s highly recommended to include this step in your home exterior cleaning process.
For light fittings that can be removed, do so to give them a proper clean. Have a handy bucket filled with warm water and, using a cloth, give each fixture a good wash before drying them and refitting them.
For light fittings that can’t be removed, use a cloth or foam paintbrushes to get into the areas you need to clean.
Increase Your Curb Appeal Today
With these guidelines, you should be well on having a lovely clean property to show prospective buyers. Exterior cleaning doesn’t have to take days if you get other people involved to help, so don’t be shy to ask family and friends. Making sure you have everything ready before you begin also ensures the job is handled quickly and efficiently.
We hope you’ve enjoyed reading this article and found it helpful. Our site is filled with more articles like this, so we encourage you to check out our Real Estate, Landscaping, and Home Decor categories.