Need to Sell Your Home Fast, Then Make It Look Its Best

June 23, 2011


These fixes do not have to break the bank but you will want to be sure they are performed correctly and do not cost you or the new owner more because of the work that is done.

Pressure washing or power washing, as it is sometimes called, can do wonders to improve your homes curb appeal. And even though words like pressure and power are in the names, not all exterior cleaning needs much of either to do the job well or correctly.

Take a look at your home from the street with a fresh eye. Is the landscape clean and neat, meaning bushes trimmed, grass cut and flower beds colorful? Are the walk ways and driveway clean and bright, meaning free of oil spots, mold and mildew? Are the roof shingles the color they were when they were installed, meaning can you see ugly black mold or algea streaks running down them or worse, have moss growing on them, over flowing clogged gutters or stopped up drains?

All of these things can cause a would be buyer to not even stop or step out of their car when they pull up or drive by to look at your home. Or worse yet, have offers come in under your asking price just due to the outward appearance of your home. You could be losing thousands of dollars.

So let’s look at what a pressure washing contractor and a few hundred dollars can do for you.

First you have to find a company to work with and you want to be sure the company you hire is insured and has a good reputation. Ask for referrals from friends, neighbors that have property you admire (they probably do not keep it that way themselves) or by checking with web sites that deal with qualified or sometimes even pre-screened business. Try sites like your free local BBB, you can find yours at, paid services like Angies List at, or other free services like Service Magic at, or groups within the pressure washing business community like the,, and New sites with local home town company interest are also available such as MerchantCircle at or Kudzu at

Now that you have a contractor what type of work can you expect to be done?


First many types of cleaning can be performed with just hot water or high pressure alone like for hard concrete surfaces, but the bests results usually come from a combination of chemicals, heat and pressure and can also be the safest for you and your property. Heat will reduce the amount of chemicals and time it will take to remove dirt and stains. But in some areas like a roof, low pressure with just tepid tap water is all that is needed. The asphalt shingle manufacture association has put out a technical bulletin that states that they recommend a mixture of professional bleach with a little surfactant to remove the black algea staining from the surface of shingles. In fact many manufactures will void your warranty if they find improper cleaning methods have been used and have degraded the surface of the shingle. To protect yourself and be sure of the method your contractor plans to use when roof cleaning.

With house washing high pressure is also not recommended especially with textured surfaces like stucco or with vinyl siding, since high pressure can damage the surface or force water under siding strips and cause unwanted moisture and possible future mold growth or other damage that can not be seen. If you have a lot of wood or decking you might also consider restaining if cleaning alone dose not bring back the color of the wood. This too should not be a high pressure job since strong tight streams of water can erode wood and cause firing of the wood fibers leaving a rough uneven texture of the wood surface. Chemicals not pressure should be used to clean the wood surface. For long neglected wood, a new stain and sealing coat should be considered after a proper cleaning. Outdoor livable areas can add twice or more to the value to the home that it cost to build them, but only if they look like new.

Make sure the chemicals and stains your contractor will use will be safe for you, your plants and your pets. Even strong chemicals can be use safely if proper measures are taken, like flushing extra water on and around plants, using plastic or fabric coverings, or using the proper neutralizers after certain chemicals have been applied. Just be sure to inform your contractor of any thing they should look out for, like a Kio pond, pet water and food bowls, etc.

Pressure washing can add value back into your property that it may have lost over the years, right when you need it the most and want to get the best return on your investment. Be sure you find that extra money by showing off your homes exterior beauty with proper cleaning.

Article provided by Soap Warehouse distributor of high quality, highly concentrated products for the professional contractor. Visit for a complete catalog listing of over 90 items in 7 different cleaning categories or call 1-800-762-7911.

Linda Chambers, Brand and Sales Manager, Soap Warehouse, 1-800-762-7911,


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