How to prepare your home for sale

September 14, 2015
Melinda Halloran

Spring is a popular time of year in real estate, as it’s when buyers are most active. But when the market is so busy, you need to think about how you can make your home stand out from the pack.

To help you get your home ready for sale, I’ve put together some tips that will give it maximum appeal to buyers.

1. Finish off the jobs you’ve been meaning to get around to

If you have odd jobs you have been meaning to do, such as a leaky pipe, cracked pavers or loose doorknobs, now is the time to tick them off your checklist.

When buyers inspect your home, they will make a mental list of everything that needs to be done to the property. If they struggle to find things to put on this list, you will certainly impress them.

2. Clear out the clutter

Buyers want to see your home at its best. Presenting rooms with clutter not only detracts from the appeal of your home, but also makes it harder for the buyer to imagine their own belongings in the space. Go through and remove excess items from each room and put them into boxes, trying to remove as many family photos and personal possessions as possible. You’ll be glad you got a head start on packing when it comes time to move.

If you are concerned about your furniture looking tired, you could consider hiring furniture and artwork from a home staging company. Otherwise, think about other ways your furniture could be rearranged to better highlight the functionality of each space.

3. Repaint the walls

It is amazing how much impact freshly painted walls have. This is particularly important if you have tired paintwork or bold colours throughout the home. The last thing you want is for buyers to be focusing on your red feature wall, rather than the space itself. By repainting in bright, neutral tones, your home will look well kept and appeal to a greater number buyers. 

4. Update kitchen and bathroom fittings

This is an inexpensive way to make your kitchen and bathroom feel more modern. Think about replacing old taps and door handles for greater visual appeal.

While you are at it, remember that these rooms add the most value to a home, so spend time making them as attractive as possible. You may also want consider other inexpensive updates, such as to replacing a dated kitchen splashback or installing a new vanity in your bathroom. Small improvements to these rooms can add real value to your home.

5. Focus on the entrance

Many buyers will make up their minds within a couple of minutes of entering your property, which means first impressions really count. In some instances, a buyer may drive past your home before an inspection, or they’ll have to wait out the front if they arrive before the real estate agent, so it’s important to consider how your property looks from the street. Stand at the footpath and ask yourself: what will make my property more appealing?

Clean the driveway, tidy up the garden and any pot plants, fix the letterbox if it isn’t standing up straight and replace any broken parts of the fence. At the entrance to your home, consider painting the front door, placing pot plants inside the entrance and removing personal clutter such as piles of shoes.

6. Clean and add light

When you clean your home before an inspection, pay attention to small details such as the windows, curtains and skirting boards. Taking care of these small details indicates that the property has been cared for. Also be sure to declutter storage areas such as wardrobes, so they look larger and more organised.

Once you have cleaned and decluttered, consider whether each room has enough light. If not, add in some lamps to make them brighter. 

7. Be mindful of strong odours

Think about this before inspection day, as odours can be off-putting. On the morning of an inspection, try not to cook foods with a strong smell, such as bacon, and remove anything with an odour, such as bowls of pet food or kitty litter. Also think about airing out the property by opening all of the windows and placing fresh flowers in some of the rooms.

Also be wary of burning incense or spraying air freshener, as some people are sensitive to these strong scents and may even have allergies. Instead, try boiling fragrant foods on the stovetop, such as orange peel, lemongrass or cinnamon.

What has worked for you?

Have you sold a property before? If so, what tactics did you find worked for you? Let me know in the comments below.

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Luke Cashin
0419 733 862
Your Garden City Mortgage Broker, Brisbane


Posted in: Upgraders / movers

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