add more to the list, and the oven debate

March 25, 2009 at 10:25 am | Posted in Moving | 9 Comments

Sigh.  We’ve got a few more chores to add to the list (in red below).  Minneapolis requires a city-approved inspector to tour your home before you even put it on the market, and the items in red are the most common reasons for failing the inspection (i.e., no CO/smoke detectors, no vacuum breakers, leaky plumbing, etc).  And, since they typically charge $200 to do the first inspection and another $75 to come back and check whether you’ve made repairs, we’re hoping to just do it right the first time.  It’s going to be another busy weekend!

The updated to-do list:

  1. Scrape peeling paint from bathroom walls and re-paint
  2. Paint vanity in upstairs bathroom white, replace rusty heating vents on either side of the vanity.
  3. Replace curtains in study with white sheer curtains.
  4. Paint 3rd bedroom and set up like a bedroom (put the futon down like it’s a bed)
  5. Wash all windows
  6. Hang up pictures
  7. Move dresser out of master bedroom.
  8. Remove curtain separating Jen’s closet from master bedroom.
  9. Remove shades in master bedroom.
  10. Get bed frame for bed in master bedroom (how embarrassing is it that we’ve been sleeping on a matress/box spring on the floor for the last 10 months?).
  11. Minimize coats on the coat rack, or remove completely and hang a picture in it’s place.
  12. Repaint/patch ceiling in butler’s pantry (there’s a small damaged area that was there when we purchased it… must have been old damage that was repaired poorly).
  13. Stage main floor bedroom as a bedroom.  Remove boxes, set up bedframe/air mattress.
  14. Kitchen: fix falling ceiling tile, add a stove, hide dish drying rack.
  15. Get rid of old washer/dryer.
  16. Get rid of cobwebs in basement rafters.
  17. Sweep/vacuum basement floor.
  18. Tidy up storage area in basement.
  19. Organize laundry area.
  20. Replace side screen door?  (Not sure about this one)
  21. Add woodchips to new planting beds created last year (instead of the mud that’s currently there…).
  22. Change HVAC filter
  23. Test smoke detectors
  24. Install 2 CO detectors (they must be within 10 feet of each legal bedroom… meaning we need one on the main floor and one on the second floor)
  25. Check to make sure extension cords are not being used to plug things in.  We’ve got to get rid of one in the living room, one in the basement, and one in the kitchen.  I’m not entirely sure how we’ll plug the fridge in without an extension cord (the fridge cord does not reach to the nearest outlet).  We may have to get creative here.  (Or call an electrician).
  26. Check gutters/downspouts to make sure that things are draining properly.
  27. Put vacuum breakers on exterior water spouts and laundry room sink.
  28. Fix laundry room faucet (we’ll be calling a plumber for this one.  Jason tried to fix it, but I think the piece that’s leaky is actually welded to the rest of the pipes, so it’s time to bring in the professionals).

I should also mention our current oven debate.  I’m curious to hear your thoughts on this.

Our Realtor suggested that we get an oven.  We’ve since determined that it will cost approximately $500-800 to install said oven, even if we buy something used on Craigslist.  We’d need to buy the oven, have a plumber out to install it, and then have an electrician out to put in a new 3-prong outlet in the corner where the fridge would go (there’s currently only a 2-prong outlet there).  (Alternatively, we could buy an electric stove, install it in the corner opposite the fridge and just have an outlet installed, foregoing any gas hook up expense).  We’re not really wanting to put that money into the house, since we are likely not to get it back (our relocation package will not reimburse us for any capital improvements made on the house – if the house sells for less than we bought it for, we will be reimbursed for the difference – if the house sells for more than we bought it for, we will keep the profit, but I think this is an unlikely scenario).

So, we don’t really want to spend the money.  On the other hand, if buying a stove will make this house sell faster, it might be worth the investment.  But, wouldn’t you walk into our kitchen thinking, “oh boy, this needs to be renovated” regardless of whether there was a stove present?  Or is it better to at least have functionality – even if that functionality isn’t pretty?

To complicate things, the house across the street from us was just put on the market.  And even though it is smaller than our house (2 bedroom/1 bath vs our 4 bedroom/2 bath), they clearly have a nicer kitchen than ours…  I’m guessing a lot of people will go from one house to the other when house-hunting, and I really just want our house to be the one they choose!

Alright everyone – time to sound off:  Should we install a stove?  Or skip it?  Would YOU buy our home?  Or any home without a stove?



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  1. Let’s not forget that any reorganization of the kitchen to fit a stove in will also narrow the already narrow entrance way to the basement/back door even more.

    It’s not just a matter of putting one in. There are many factors to consider.

  2. Is there something wrong with the gas line for the stove as it is? While everyone responsible will tell you that you need to have a plumber install a gas line, it’s perfectly within the realm of any do-it-yourselfer.

  3. Ack! I meant that everyone reasonable will tell you that you need to have a plumber hook up a stove! A plumber is a must for a gas line.

  4. I vote “no” to the stove; it will just look crazier in there. A stove will not help you sell the house. Some people don’t leave appliances, but take them with when they move. Plus, an electric stove will most likely need 220 wiring (not your standard outlet) which is really expensive to install in a house that does not have it yet. You may even have to increase your electrical service (bigger circuit board) to handle that. Guaranteed anyone who buys the house will have the intention of doing a complete remodel!!!

  5. How was the last seller able to put the house on the market with all these issues?

    • They changed a bunch of rules in the past year and a half. Also, Jason and I are crazier than the average home buyer. 🙂

  6. Hmmm, that is a tough one. I think that a lot of people don’t have the creativity or ability to see beyond something that is “less than optimal” (and some don’t want the hassle). However, it will be REALLY crowded in there if you try to stuff a stove in the corner. Perhaps a saws-all would take out a chunk of your cabinets… 🙂 BUT then you are still left with having to hire an electrician to upgrade your service and wire the kitchen for a stove (sounds like big bucks to me). If you do go for the stove, I know someone who bought a VERY BASIC scratch and dent one for just under $200 at Appliance Smart in St. Louis Park. If you opt out of the stove idea, I would suggest leaving the almost-remodeled kitchen plans and some nice magazine photo ideas for prospective buyers. Could you possibly even give out the name of the carpenter you have been talking with? I’d probably put my efforts into spiffing up the house with paint/curtains/etc. like you have done. Then you can just “WOW” them with the rest of the house.

    • I agree.

      I’m going to try and work on getting a nice computer drawing of our kitchen plans together with a couple different options available. This way people could see the *vision* as you have to be insane to live in that house with the kitchen the way it is.

      Our other option would be to put the fridge in the basement and the stove where the fridge is, then you have your triangle….it just involves a flight of stairs. I’m sure everyone will love that.

      • So, a three dimensional work triangle… may have just come up with a great new design idea. The “food pyramid” takes on new meaning…….I’m thinking that the spiffy new kitchen across the street better just watch out. (but then again, I am no realtor)

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