Preparing Your Home For Sale
First impressions count…
Selling your property is an exciting and busy time. PRD Jens Gaunt has a wealth of experience in selling properties, so we know what buyers look for. We know they start forming an opinion even before they walk through your door at the very first inspection.
To achieve the best possible price for your home, you must ensure the features that make your property unique are highlighted and distractions are kept to a minimum. Buyers look for negatives to give them bargaining power in negotiations, and the cost of minor repairs soon add up.
This should not be a costly exercise. It is the little things that count. Your PRD Jens Gaunt agent is there to provide you with advice and recommend small inexpensive changes.
This booklet contains some inexpensive and effective suggestions on how to prepare your home for sale, to ensure you achieve the best possible price in today’s market. However, always consult with your PRD Jens Gaunt agent to ensure you don’t over-capitalise.
If the inside of your property is inviting it will generate an emotional response from a potential buyer. Set aside some time to refresh the interior of your property. Consider what you would be looking for if you were the buyer.
• Fresh Paint
A coat of paint is a quick and cost-effective way to brighten your property. A neutral colour scheme makes it easier for prospective buyers to visualise themselves and their furniture in your home. Ensure you repair any chipped or damaged areas.
• Floor Coverings
Steam-cleaning carpeted areas is a must. It eliminates pet smells, brightens the house and often enhances your home by making rooms appear larger. Consider revarnishing floorboards and tiles to add instant value to your home.
• Storage areas
Storage space is important because it determines whether a buyer’s possessions will fit in your property. Eliminate clutter by re-organising kitchen cupboards, wardrobes, and storage areas for a more spacious environment. Consider external storage options during the selling period.
Furniture affects the mood of a property. It can be worth hiring furniture to show off rooms to best effect, or removing large items temporarily throughout the marketing campaign. You’ll be surprised what a difference it makes to the look and feel of the property.
The kitchen is often one of the main factors that influence a buyer to make a decision. Buyers look for space, cleanliness and functionality in this important room. Make sure cupboards are neat and tidy. The less clutter the larger the space appears. Fresh fruit always brightens a kitchen.
A sparkling, sweet-smelling bathroom, with neatly folded towels and a few personal touches, makes all the difference. Ensure this room is as neat and clean as possible.
• Lounge and Media Rooms
This is where the majority of time is spent in the family home. You need to create atmosphere in this room that reflects the essence of your home. The style and location of your home is a good guide on how to maximise these rooms. For example, beach-houses tend to be light and airy, while cottages are warm and cosy. City living is all about style and maximising space.
• Smokers Beware
Avoid smoking inside your property. Non-smokers can detect a smoker’s house a mile away and this will be reason enough to put them off a property.
Repair any damaged walls, floors, windows and doors. Ensure plumbing, heating and cooling is in working order.
With the increase in outdoor living, the exterior of a property has the potential to be a unique selling point. Stand in the shoes of the buyer and see your property for the first time.
Painting and fixing cracked roof tiles adds instant impact on the first inspection. Unblock and clean drains, buyers also perceive it as one of the more costly renovations, so it will be well appreciated.
Paint adds value to the property instantly. Use colour-matching systems from large hardware stores to select the perfect colour scheme to match the style of your property.
Garages are often the most neglected part of the family home. Ideally, they should be clutter free and highly organised environments. Buyers rate a well-maintained garage highly on their checklist, as it gives the impression that the seller has maintained the property. Always keep your garage door closed.
Clean windows not only look great from the street, but they let more light into your home as well. Ensure windows are spotless inside and out.
A clean and clear pathway is both inviting and impressive – and a vital part of the entrance to your home. Neaten edges, lawns, and shrubbery or designer grasses and eliminate weeds. Make sure toys or sporting equipment is stored out of sight.
Renovation programs have demonstrated what a difference a welcoming garden can make to the sale price of a property. Ensure your garden is looking its best.
Blooming flowers and shrubs at the entrance to the property add colour and style to your home. Choose varieties that will bloom at inspection times. Trim any large overhanging branches especially around windows and doors to allow natural light into the house.
• A green lawn
Feed and weed your lawn so that at inspection time potential buyers see the true value of the property’s surrounds. Keep the lawn trimmed and neat – nothing beats soft cushy lawns.
• Garden Features
Does your garden have something unusual to excite a buyer’s interest, or is it in a more traditional style? A garden with atmosphere can dramatically increase emotion. An area to entertain, a seat to relax, or a safe place for the children to play are features sought by the potential buyer. Adding style to the garden is the latest trend in the home renovation market. However, consult your professional PRD Jens Gaunt real estate agent to ensure you don’t over-capitalise — their advice could save you dollars.
When the inspection day arrives, there are a few last minute touches that can add atmosphere and increase interest in your property.
• People often use fresh flowers, brewed coffee and baked bread to generate interest and emotion in prospective buyers. Be sure to utilise these tools if you feel that adding such finishing touches will add value at your open inspection.
• Arrange for pets such as cats and dogs to be off-site on inspection days. Potential buyers could be allergic or more often frightened of the family pet lazing in the back yard.
• Last minute tasks like storing toys, tidying bedrooms, clearing dishes and removing washing from the clothesline creates space and the sense of cleanliness.
• Fill the house with natural light and turn on airconditioning or heating when required.
• Switch off televisions and radio. Soft music may be suitable.
• Ensure you secure all valuables.
• Your PRD Jens Gaunt agent will arrive before the inspection to collect keys and have a final once-over of your property before showing buyers through.
It’s best for you to leave during inspection time — buyers might be put off knowing the owner is nearby. Take the time to go for a walk or enjoy a coffee in celebration of your hard work.
When you return, your PRD Jens Gaunt agent will provide an overview of how many groups attended your inspection, and which parties expressed a keen interest in your property. The negotiation process will begin when interested parties make an offer, and all your efforts in preparing your property for sale will come to fruition.
You can improve the value of your home and increase your selling price by presenting your home in an attractive way. Here is a check list to help you.
¨ Mow lawns (and council strip)
¨ Rake leaves/sweep paths
¨ Weed garden/add potted plants if more greenery is required
¨ Plant small flowering plants
¨ Prune trees and shrubs
¨ Clear gutters and drains and paint if necessary
¨ Remove toys and yard clutter
¨ Remove bins
¨ Wash windows and flyscreen
¨ Clean away cobwebs
¨ Wash the exterior of house and touch up paint
¨ Clean doorways
¨ Clean or replace front door mat
¨ Clean pool if you have one
¨ Paint and touch up interior walls if required
¨ Make necessary repairs/replacements eg. shower curtain, leaky taps, peeling paint.
¨ Clean carpets/polish floors professionally to remove stains and odour
¨ Clean curtains, blinds, shutters
¨ Organise/tidy garage
¨ De-clutter rooms - remove bulky furniture if necessary, take down family photos, and put away knick-knacks
¨ Clean bathrooms thoroughly - get rid of mould and water stains
¨ Polish/dust furniture
• Inspection Days
¨ Clean, make sure the house is spotless!
¨ Eliminate clutter - kitchen bench tops and bathroom vanities should be clear and clean
¨ Open curtains - create a feeling of space and light
¨ Open windows to ensure there are no bad odours
¨ Make your place smell good. Burn essential oils or bake bread or brew coffee
¨ Vacuum and mop floors
¨ Make all the beds and replace bathroom towels
¨ Put on air conditioning if hot outside or heating if it is cold
¨ Select the best time of day for sunlight. If you do show it at night, make sure the house is well lit
¨ Create the mood - soft background music will help create a sense of ease
¨ Remove any animals/pets from the property