Thinking of Selling?

If you're selling, or thinking of selling your home, read through this helpful list of easy hints on preparing your house for sale and getting the best result.

First Impressions

Once you’ve decided to sell, it’s important to set a good first impression if you want to bring as many potential buyers through your front door as possible. Just by looking after a few simple tasks around the house, you are setting the scene for a successful marketing period.

Street Appeal

There’s nothing more important than presentation, and street appeal is the first thing potential buyers will take note of. Make sure your front garden is always is pristine condition, lawns mowed, footpaths swept and garden beds weeded. If you think the area is all looking a little tired, mulching the beds and planting some fresh shrubs of flowering plants will be a small but wise investment.

A spot of fertilizer and water on the law will bring it back to life while a few potted plants near the front door can also be a nice touch. Remember that your front fence is one of the first and last things a buyer will notice: does it need repairing or a splash of paint? Will your front gate greet visitors with broken or squeaking hinges that could easily be fixed?

Cheerful Greetings

Once a buyer is about to enter your home, avoiding greeting them with a shabby front door and dirty windows. A little paint and some window cleaner could make all the difference. Check all your windows and screens, fixing any crack or holes, and make sure they are all in working order. Don’t forget to also do a sweep for cobwebs and wash down any extra grime or mould and mildew on any outside windows.

Out The Back

Pay the same amount of attention to your backyard, cleaning up unsightly spots or piles of garden rubbish. Make sure that any play equipment, cubby house or outdoor furniture is scrubbed down, in good repair and looks inviting for families who may inspect your property. If you have a swimming pool, ensure it’s clean and the water is sparkling so you don’t give buyers the impression that upkeep and maintenance is too much of a chore. The garage and garden shed are other areas that are often full of clutter. Do yourself a favor and dispose of all excess junk now, not when it come time to move.

Spring Cleaning

If your floors are scuffed or the paint is fading, consider some minor redecoration. A well-placed rug can do wonders for worn carpet and a fresh coat of paint on areas like skirting boards may be all you need.

Don’t let little problems like dripping taps and burnt-out light bulbs detract from all the things a buyer will love inside your home. Buyers would rather see how great your home really looks than hear how wonderful it could be with just a little work. Kitchens and bathrooms are two of the most important rooms that help sell your home so make sure potential buyers go away with a good impression.

In the bathroom, check and repair damaged or unsightly caulking in the tubs and showers. Give everything a good scrub to leave the taps, tiles and floor sparkling. Display your best towels, amts and shower curtains and ensure there are not dirty clothes or towels in sight. It’s also a good idea to ensure the bathroom/s is uncluttered as possible to make the room seem larger.

The kitchen is another room which should be spotless. Buyers will be keen to know how much storage space is available to give your cupboards a quick once-over if they are too full. It’s often a good idea to pack away least-used items not so that your give the impression of more room. Store any packed boxes with a friend or relative.

Colourful bedspreads and clean curtains will make a difference in the bedrooms and a few well-placed cushions on the bed and some fresh prints on the walls will create an inviting atmosphere. Don’t forget that buyers often look in the wardrobes, and the more neatly they’re organized, the larger they will appear. Now’s the time to box up unwanted clothes and donate them to charity.

Helping The Sale

Before spending needles time and money on renovations or repairs, consult your RE/MAX sales associate for their professional opinion on how any plans will improve your chances of a sale or the resulting sale price.

Think safety. Home owners learn to live with all kinds of self-made hazards like extension leads, low-hanging overhead lights and toys on the staircase. Make sure there are not hazards likely to catch uninitiated visitors. Remove any items that your don’t intend to be a part of the sale - a special light fitting for example - before you allow any inspections. Potential buyers often fell like intruders when they enter a home filled with people. Rather than giving your house the attention it deserves, they’re likely to hurry through, so try to keep the number of people present to a minimum.

Don’t turn your home into a second-hand store. When prospects come to view your property, don’t distract them with offers to buy the furnishings you no longer need. You may loose the biggest sale of all.

Keep a low profile during inspections. Nobody knows your homes as well as you do, however RE/MAX sales associates understand the buyers best, what they need and what they want. If you must be in the house at the time of an inspection make sure you keep a low profile.

Your RE/MAX associate will find it easier to discuss the benefits of your home if you stay in the background. When prospective buyers want to talk price, terms or other real estate matters, let them speak in privacy. Your RE/MAX associate has all the necessary skills and qualifications to discuss these important matters with buyer on your behalf and bring negotiations to the favourable outcome.

Open Inspection Day

Check that all rooms have been cleaned and tidied, the beds have been made and that there are not dirty clothes of dishes scattered around the house. Use strategically-positioned fresh flowers to add a little warmth, perfume and colour.
Rock and roll will never die, but it might kill a real estate transaction to turn down the music and switch off the television. Soft, unobtrusive music is the best choice for putting buyers in a positive frame of mind.

Good lighting adds colour and warmth to a home, making potential buyers feel welcome. During the day, pull back your curtains to let the sunshine in and, when showing your home in the evening, turn on all the lights, both inside and out.
Create a welcoming scent throughout your home during inspections. Make sure the house is well aired then put some coffee on to brew, bake something in the oven or maybe display a few bowls of potpourri.

On uncomfortably hot and cold days, use air conditioners, fans or heating to make your home more appealing.
Watch your pets. Dogs and cats are great companions, but not while potential buyers are inspecting your home. Keep animals outside, or at least out of the way, and definitely under controlled supervision. If pets are usually allowed indoors, attend to any animal odours prior to inspections.

For extra security, it’s advisable to make sure all your valuables are lock up and out of sight when buyers come through your home.

Finally, don’t be in the best part of the house during the inspection. Go for a short walk, visit friends or go for a coffee. Stay out of the way and let your RE/MAX sales associate conduct the inspection to talk freely with potential buyers.

Lawns mowed, footpaths swept, gardens weeded

Windows and exterior wall cleaned

Paintwork re-touched

Excess rubbish removed

Kitchen and bathroom cleaned

Beds made

Furniture dusted

Floors swept, vacuumed or mopped

Property checked for safety hazards

Sole exclusions removed

House is aired and well lit

Pets are out of the way

You’ve made arrangement to be out of the house

Let your RE/MAX sales associate do the talking

For some consumer tips - please visit http://www.fairtrading.qld.gov.au/selling-a-home.htm