How to prepare your property for a successful sale
Property is a hot topic. Like most of us, you’ve probably found yourself around the backyard BBQ discussing house prices, interest rates and local demand.
But we don’t tend to move that often – more than half of us have been in our present house for over five years¹. So if you’re selling your house it’s important to get it right.
Here are some tips to help put you on the right track – all the way from putting your property on the market to securing a successful sale.
Get the right agent—Shop around to find a real estate agent that you’re comfortable with. Talk to previous clients, go to auctions and check out recent sales. Negotiate on commission but remember, cheapest isn’t necessarily the best. And ask the right questions:
- Are they experts in the local area?
- How do they recommend marketing your property?
- What advice can they give about presenting your home?
Decide how to sell—Auctions tend to be more common in suburbs where there is strong demand. Outside these areas, you find more private sales. Your agent can help you make the right decision for your property.
Do the research—Don’t set your sights too high. Check out trends in your area. If you go in with unrealistic expectations in a falling market, your property could end up on the shelf.
Get the marketing right— In our digital world a printed flyer might seem an expensive luxury. But scrimping on photographs and adverts can be false economy. You’d be surprised how many prospective buyers can come across your property while flicking through the paper over their weekend latte. Sometimes it pays to cover all the bases.
Get the prices right—Talk to your agent about setting the right price. The advertised price should encourage interest without being misleading. The reserve is the price at which you’ll make the property available.
Organise bridging finance—If you need to buy before you sell, you might need to service two home loans at the same time. Check with your home loan provider about a ‘bridging loan’ to tide you over.
Sweat the small stuff—Small things can make a big difference. So clean the windows, paint the walls and get busy sanding, patching, mending and repairing. Consider hiring professionals to make your place spotless. It could make all the difference on the day.
Think less is more—It’s amazing how much stuff we accumulate. But the more you have, the smaller your rooms can appear. Declutter and put excess furniture into storage.
Avoid the personal touch— If your taste is too individual, it could put people off. You want to make it easy for people to imagine living in your house.
- If you have a room painted in an unusual colour, consider repainting in neutral tones.
- If you have obvious signs of pets, consider giving them a short holiday.
Get the look right—If your sofa has seen better days, you can hire quality furniture for the viewings.
Get the mood right—Moderation is key. Make sure the rooms are well lit but don’t overdo it. And depending on the time of year, you might need to set the timer to heat or cool the house. You don’t want prospective buyers turning up to a sauna or an icebox.
Do up the front—It’s your shop window and it’s what prospective buyers are going to be looking at when they make a bid. So you don’t want small things like untidy lawns, dead trees and cracked paint to put them off.
Work out a plan B—Auction day will be stressful enough without last-minute surprises. So talk to your agent about exactly what will happen and when—from their opening remarks through to contingency plans for rain and the paperwork at the end…and what to do if you don’t make your reserve.
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Produced by AMP Life Limited and published on 2 June 2015. Original article.
© AMP Life Limited. This provides general information and hasn’t taken your circumstances into account. It’s important to consider your particular circumstances before deciding what’s right for you. Although the information is from sources considered reliable, AMP does not guarantee that it is accurate or complete. You should not rely upon it and should seek qualified advice before making any investment decision. Except where liability under any statute cannot be excluded, AMP does not accept any liability (whether under contract, tort or otherwise) for any resulting loss or damage of the reader or any other person.