A house that “sparkles” on the surface will sell faster than its shabby neighbour, even though both are structurally well-maintained. This applies particularly to Older style properties that require a high level of maintenance.
From our experiences, we also know that a “well-presented” house appeals to more buyers and will sell faster, and often for a higher price. Additionally, buyers feel more comfortable purchasing a well-cared for home because if what they can see is maintained, what they can’t see has probably also been maintained. In readying your house for sale, consider:
How much should you spend
In preparing your home for the market, you should consider whether you will recoup the money you spend. For example, although buyers will be impressed by a brand new roof, they may not give you enough extra money to pay for it.
There is a big difference between making minor and inexpensive “touch-ups” to your house, such as putting new knobs on cabinets and a fresh coat of neutral paint in the living room, and doing extensive and costly renovations, like installing a new kitchen. Don’t hesitate to contact me for advice.
Maximising exterior and street appeal
Before putting your house on the market, take as much time as necessary to maximise its exterior and interior appeal. Tips to enhance your home’s exterior and street appeal include:
- Keep the lawn edged, cut and watered regularly.
- Trim hedges, weed lawns and flowerbeds, and prune trees regularly.
- Check the foundation, steps, walkways, walls, patios and verandahs for cracks and crumbling.
- Inspect doors and windows for peeling paint.
- Clean and align gutters.
- Consider cleaning the exterior paintwork.
- Repair and replace loose or damaged tiles.
- During spring and summer months consider planting some annuals, perhaps in pots, near your front entrance.
- Keep your garage door closed.
Maximising interior appeal
Enhance your home’s interior by:
Giving every room in the house a thorough cleaning, as well as removing all clutter. This alone will make your house appear bigger and brighter. Some homeowners with crowded rooms have actually rented storage units and moved half their furniture out, creating a minimalist, more spacious look.
Hiring a professional cleaning service, once every few weeks while the house is on the market. This may be a good investment for owners who are busy elsewhere.
Removing the less frequently used, even daily used items from kitchen counters and cupboards, making these areas much more inviting. Since you’re anticipating a move anyhow, holding a garage sale at this point is a great idea. If necessary, repainting dingy, soiled or strongly coloured walls with a neutral shade of paint, such as off-white or beige.
- Repairing cracks, holes or damage to plaster, wallboard, wallpaper, paint, and tiles.
- Replacing broken or cracked windows, mouldings, and other woodwork.
- Inspecting and repairing the plumbing, heating , cooling, and alarm systems.
- Repairing dripping taps and shower heads.
- Buying new towels for the bathroom, to be brought out only when prospective buyers are on the way, or during home opens.
Of all the rooms inside your home, pay special attention to the kitchen and bathrooms. They should look as modern, bright and fresh as possible. It is essential for them to be clean and odor free.
Tips for Home Opens and Inspections
Before you put your home on the market, there are some things you can do to differentiate your house among the competitors.
Quick tips for opens and inspections:
- Keep counter tops cleared
- Replace all burnt out light bulbs
- Open all curtains and window blinds
- Take pets with you or take them to a neighbour
- No dirty dishes in the sink
- No laundry in the washer/dryer
- Clean or replace dirty or worn carpets
- Put on soft music
- Buy new towels for the bathroom
Always look at your home from the buyer’s point of view. Be objective and be honest.