How to Get Your home Ready for Sale

How to get the inside of your property ready for sale

Before you sell your house, it’s important to remember that first impressions are everything; transforming from family castle into a showroom for prospective buyers is a major part of attracting the highest sale price. Carrying out just a few touch-ups alone can go a long way in making your home stand out in the eyes of potential buyers and of course, make selling your property more probable. You’ll want to create an immaculate canvas that invites prospective purchasers to dream about what’s possible with your property.

It’s time to put on your buyer’s hat and step through your home as if it’s the very first time you set foot inside. Carrying a notepad with you is great idea; making notes on what buyers might notice. This will give you a list of actionable items, allowing you to make necessary repairs, maintenance or adjustments on whatever points you’ve noted. Remember that if you’ve noticed it, someone looking to purchase your home probably will too.

Thoroughly clean your home to as close to original condition as possible

 Arguably the most important step, you’ll want to carefully clean every crevice of your property before beginning the process of selling your property. Make sure you thoroughly clean the power points, fan blades, door handles and light switches. In addition, we’d suggest a polish clean of appliances (like your microwave and kettle) and give the windows a thorough scrub. We all lead busier lives than ever, and you might not have time to get it all done yourself, in which case we’d highly suggest an end-of-lease clean from a professional.

Pay careful attention to any unpleasant scents and smells

Scientists have discovered that of all the senses, smell triggers the most powerful emotions and memories. We don’t often notice our own scent, or don’t mind smells we enjoy, however strong odors such as freshly cooked bacon or curry can often seep their way into your home’s paint. It might taste great (I mean, who doesn’t love a healthy dose of Butter Chicken?) but when trying to appeal to a variety of buyers it’s probably best to avoid smelling like your local takeaway. When it comes to eliminating odors, vinegar is your best friend. Boil it with water in the kitchen, pour it down smelly drains and load it up in your dishwasher (in a dishwasher safe container, of course). The vinegar smell will disappear after a few hours, taking those nasty smells along with it.

Repaint any brightly painted walls with neutral colours

Try to limit the use of very bright or obscure color combinations, particularly in the common areas such as your dining room or lounge room. As we all have individual tastes and preferences, those bright pink cornices you love so much might turn away that buyer willing to pay the most. Paint can be relatively inexpensive in terms of the return on investment a fresh coat brings when selling your house. Repaint rooms with neutral colors such as tan and white. This alone will enable buyers to focus solely on the spaces in the home rather than colours of the walls.

Avoid over-the-top or exotic decorations and artwork

You might be getting the gist of this article so far, but the key to drawing in as many buyer’s for your property as possible is keeping things neutral. Whilst your partner might enjoy that “tasteful nude” portrait discretely hung inside your bedroom, it may not be to everyone’s tastes. You want new homeowner’s to be able to visualize a future of their own inside your home. This alone can play a huge part in sealing a sales deal for the property.

Remove all personally identifying knick-knacks

It’s time to archive some of those personal knick-knacks and mementos. Removing personal belongings such as family photos in the hallway or your kids’ artwork on the fridge is a smart move. Most buyers want to be able to envision themselves in your home, since the home may possibly become theirs in the future.

Welcome prospective buyers into your property with a new door mat

This might be one of the most neglected aspects when it comes to getting your home ready for sale. Buyers always like to feel loved and welcomed and the simple gesture of placing a floor mat tagged “Welcome” can work wonders in enticing interested parties into the sales process.

Allow as much light into your home as possible

One of the beautiful things about well-lit spaces is they give the illusion of being bigger than what they are, seem more inviting and create a cheery atmosphere. Always make sure the blinds of the home all kept open to let natural light brighten up the home interior. In rooms without large windows, simply adding an extra lamp or two can help to achieve the same effect.

Spice up your interior with some strategically placed colour

Placing colourful vases with easy-to-maintain or faux plants in them can be mind-blowing, especially when they are placed in strategic locations throughout the home. Drooping and sick plants will have the opposite effect, so if you’ve decided to use the real thing it’s important you keep them watered and free of bugs. If the thought of having to keep something other than yourself alive gives you nightmares, sticking with fake flowers might be the better option.

Remove bulky and unnecessary furniture

Because your furniture needs to fit the scale of your room, make sure you get rid of extra items that could make your space look smaller than it really is.

Keep your wardrobe organized and well presented

Always remember that storage spaces, such as walk-in or large wardrobes, are a massive selling point. If your wardrobe is over-occupied, buyers may assume they’re lacking in space. Create space for a few boxes and possibly add in some dividers, which will make your belongings seem a little more organized.

Renovate without the renovation

Very small tweaks have a huge impact on the overall feel of a room. For example, if the kitchen is looking a little bit dated, replace the fixtures, faucets, and hinges. If the furniture of the master bedroom is not in the best condition, throw some slipcovers over it and all will be fine. The key here is to keep it inexpensive, and it’s the smaller touches that often make the biggest difference.

Keep the toilet door closed

Even if your loo is clean enough to eat off of, always keep the door closed. This is important especially whilst photographing the interior of your home for sale. It’s a simple little trick that can make a surprising difference.

Give a unique purpose to every room in the property

Selling your property for top dollar relies on attracting buyers with an emotional attachment to your home. One of the best ways to create that emotional attachment is by helping them to picture what living in your property will be like and creating a specific purpose for each room. Pick a use (home office, guest room, crafts room) and clearly stage the space to highlight that purpose.

How to get the outside of your property ready for sale

When it’s time to get your house ready for sale, make sure to set time aside to for your exteriors. It’s easy to get caught up with the interiors. Whether it’s the blistering summer Sun or those ruthlessly frosty Winters that our Canberra is famous for, the last place you probably want to be is outside.

But what’s the first thing any potential buyer is going to see?

The front of your property!

They say you judge a person within the first 6 seconds of meeting them, and your home is no different. If people see an untidy garden or broken furniture they might even assume the worst – that the things they can’t see (such as your wiring or plumbing) are in the same condition.

Is cleaning the outside of my home really that important?

Cleanliness is important because even people who don’t mind a bit of their own clutter will usually notice other people’s. When purchasers view your house, they’re going to be judging every little detail in order to decide what your property is worth, so make sure you nail that impression first time round.

Before you put your home on the market, stand out on your street and take some time to look at your property from another person’s perspective. This is what your potential buyer’s will see. How does your house measure up?

Quick tips to get the outside of your property ready to sell

  • Get the broom out – give the footpaths (and your deck too, if you have one) the sweeping they deserve
  • Make sure you clean out your gutters, as well as your window frames and eaves
  • If you have any outdoor furniture it’d be a good idea to give it a wash – especially when it’s colder and you haven’t used it for a long time – or if it’s beyond repair it might be worthwhile investing in rental furniture that suits your property
  • Don’t forget to do a thorough tidy up of any loose bits and pieces (such as broken kids toys or old plant pots). Remember that an interested buyer will want to see EVERYTHING, even the parts that you might not use often
  • Ensure that any half finished home projects are dismantled and removed, as much sentimental value as they may have your prospective buyer’s will want to see a clean slate to start with
  • If your house is made of brick, use a high pressure hose to get rid of all that grime and moss that’s built up over the years – this will really get those exteriors shining
  • Invest in some fresh mulch for your garden beds to help add a little colour and give your yard a fresh, new feeling
  • Add some colour to your property in places that people will pay attention to – a really good way to do this is with a few well placed (and inexpensive) flower pots or decorative features – but if you’re adding flowers just remember that droopy plants are worse than no plants at all, so don’t forget to water them!
  • A fresh coat of paint on your fascia with a neutral colour scheme will give your home an edgy modern feel to it, especially if there’s paint that is starting to crack or peel

And remember, it’s the little details that make the biggest difference. A few small investments (with either time or money) in getting your house ready to sell can make the world of difference when it comes to getting the best possible price when selling your home.

If you’re considering selling your property, why not speak to one of our senior agents? Our agency principal, Peter Tolhurst, has over 25 years experience and would be happy to perform a free, no obligation market appraisal at a time that suits you.

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