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Preparing your home for sale

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Selling your home this autumn

Get your property in-shape to attract buyers and maximise your selling price.

With March signalling the start of the Autumn home selling season, many owners are looking to get their property in-shape to attract buyers and maximise their selling price. But with competition rife and the cost of labour high, most buyers will be looking for changes that are affordable and easy to implement.

1. Put your buyer’s hat on.

As an owner, you’re probably attached to your home and the memories it holds. It’s important that you put your ‘buyer’s hat on’, and effectively complete a walk-through of your property with a notebook and pen. The point of this exercise is to try and pick-up as many faults with your home as possible; a dirty carpet in the entry-way, stained vanity units and jammed doors. You should keep in mind that potential buyers have no emotional attachment to your home, what you consider to be unique ‘quirks’, may be considered undesirable faults.

Once you have your complete project list, work out the price of repairing or replacing each item. Agree on a set budget and select the items from the list that you and your real estate agent, think will make the biggest difference to your sale price. If you’re lucky, it might just be a deep-clean of your carpets. In other scenarios, you may have to opt for a whole new coat of paint for the walls.

2. Consider renting out a storage unit.

It’s critical that when you’re opening your home to prospective buyers, it does not appear cluttered and cramped. People inspecting your property will look through cupboards and drawers to get a feel of storage space. If your pantries and cupboards are full to the brim, they’re going to get the impression that the home isn’t big enough for their requirements.

If this sounds like your home, it may be worth renting a temporary storage unit to hold unnecessary items, or additional pieces of furniture that are bulky and infringing on space. Prices can start from as low as $250 per month for a garage-sized lock-up unit.

You can make simple changes, for example, if your dining table is cramped, consider taking away two chairs and just leaving four, to create the illusion of more space.

3. The importance of light.

As we head closer into Autumn, the days begin to get shorter. This can be a problem if your home already lacks sufficient lighting. An easy and affordable fix is to get familiar with different lighting options to help create richer, crisper and more vivid spaces.

There are a range of different coloured globes to help create ambiance in your home, ranging from yellows through to blues. As a general rule of thumb, you should be using a soft white (yellowish range) for bedrooms and living areas such as the lounge room. Warm White (yellow and white range) or Bright Whites (white to blue range) are best for kitchens, office spaces and nooks, as well as bathrooms.

Once you deal with getting the right artificial lighting in place, the next step is to maximise your home’s natural lighting. Make sure that all windows and sills are properly cleaned to remove dust and grime build-up. This also applies to curtains and shutters, wash and wipe these thoroughly so they allow in as much light as possible.

4. Let your home’s personality shine (not yours)!

This is one thing sellers often get wrong. They confuse their home’s personality with their own. When opening your property for inspections, make sure all personal effects, such as pictures, heirlooms and grandma’s comfy chair are removed. People want to be able to picture their own family in the home – not yours!

However, this doesn’t mean you should remove your home’s personality. This refers specifically to the period in which your home was built. For example, the Victorian decorative railings, or the Californian bungalow casement windows and interior hallways, if executed well, can bring a whole new level of charm to your property.

5. Give each room a purpose.

It’s important when trying to sell your home that each room has a purpose. This might sound simple enough, however, the ‘spare room’ which is currently being used as your walk-in wardrobe will need to change to maximise your selling potential. Instead, look at converting this back into that additional bedroom, or alternatively a functional office.

By showing each room’s individual potential, you’re creating more for the buyer to think about.

If you’re presently looking at getting your property ready for sale, and don’t know what it could be worth in today’s market, why not request a FREE property valuation report from Gateway?

I want a FREE property report

Your free report will detail comparable, recent sales in your areas, as well as an estimate of the potential selling price of your property.


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