Selling Your Home?

Railing Replacements to the Rescue

According to a 2011 study presented in Remodeling Magazine, entryway improvements and deck replacements are among the ten improvements most likely to pay back when you sell your home. Furthermore, good-looking entryways, decks and porches add a lot of curb appeal.

vinyl porch railing

New vinyl railing creates a good first impression for potential buyers

Linda Windisch, a real estate agent with Northwood Realty in Wexford, PA, says the entryway is one of the first areas she examines when helping a homeowner get ready to sell. Says Windisch, "I'm encouraged when I see railings, decks, and porches in good condition. It makes it so much easier to bring the house to market."

And why not? An attractive front porch and entryway create the all-important good first impression. An appealing deck helps potential buyers imagine the pleasure of gathering with family and friends—perhaps as soon as moving day! These assets can help give your home that sought-after label: "Move-in condition."

But it's not just about appearances, says Windisch. "Railing, fence, porch, and deck maintenance are really important to the entire sale process," she says, "because they figure heavily in the building inspection." She grades homes into five levels based on their condition. "With each level decrease, you can expect to lose about three percent off the final sale price," she says.

Before vinyl railing replacement

unsafe railings

Missing railings

After vinyl railing replacement

replacement vinyl railing by Penn Fence

Before Aluminum Railing

insufficient railing for the number of steps

After Aluminum Railing

New replacement railing surrounds all steps

The iron railing is sparse compared to the number of steps. New Age Craft aluminun railings accent the entire stair case.

Before Deck Railing Replacement

Unsafe Deck

After Deck Railing Replacement

Deck replacement

Parents of young children might find the railing above insufficient protection.

The new replacement deck above, however, creates a safer and more attractive environment.

Windisch concludes, "I encourage people to always keep their homes current with the market, not just when they're going to sell. That way, they can enjoy those upgrades and replacements while they're living there."

What if you are getting ready to sell and it has been a while since your entryway, deck or porch were installed? Replacement railings, post caps, and vinyl wraps cost only a fraction of a full deck or porch replacement, but can result in a completely updated look. And while you're upgrading appearances, you can also check on the safety and code-compliance of guardrails and handrails. This will help you get past the scrutiny of home inspection.

Railing Safety Inspection: Your railing replacement should be preceded by a safety inspection. Here are five safety points to consider:

1. When the potential buyer or building inspector grasps the handrail, will it feel completely stable?

2. Is the height and length of the handrail appropriate? Does it meet local code?

3. Does the height of the guardrail meet code and provide adequate protection?

4. Is the spacing between balusters (vertical spindles in a railing) too wide? Are any balusters broken or missing?

5. Are there obvious splinters, popped nails, or discolored areas?


Add Finishing Touches to Your Railing Replacement

Vinyl Post Covers:

An inexpensive way to create curb appeal.

vinyl ppost covers


Post Lighting:

Potential home buyers cruise by not only in the daytime, but at dusk and night. Solar post caps are an attractive, inexpensive way to accent your deck and landscape.

solar light post

Post Caps Add the Accent

railing post caps