Preparing Your Home For Sale
It’s been said that ‘a house sells itself’. We tend to agree, but presentation is key.
First Impressions can make or break the sale of your property. Common sense, right?
Just in case this is news to you, here are a few things to consider when preparing your home for sale. Your first goal is to have your home looking it’s best for when you host your Open for Inspections.
- Landscaping – You want your garden to be as charming as possible. Your front yard is what welcomes potential buyers to your home. So, give them the welcome they deserve.
- Shine Bright – No one likes a dark home. Dazzle potential buyers by turning on the lights, opening the windows and letting the light shine in.
- Appeal to the Senses – Make sure your home smells good! Air the place out to rid of un-inviting smells. You may even wish to light a fresh, light-scented candle to make your home feel cosy.
- Freshen Up – Give your property a face-lift by painting any fences or walls that might need some tender loving care. If you’re into bold colours, do your best to remember it’s not everyone’s cup of tea. Play it safe by turning your property into a blank canvas – opt for a lovely, neutral colour palette.
- De-clutter and Un-personalise – Give your property the ultimate Spring Clean. You’ll have to go through all your belongings when you move houses anyway, right? Pack up your family photos and that shrine of your great-aunt May on display in the living room. Keep stairways and hallways clear of clutter and remove any excess furniture to open the property. Try creating a sense of space and freedom.
You’ve ticked off the presentation piece of selling a home. It looks great – it’s clean, it’s fresh, it’s neutral. Well done! But what happens if your potential buyer peels back those layers and takes a closer look?
Think Like a Buyer
The best thing you can do as a vendor is to consider all the things you’d be concerned about if you were a buyer. If they have done their research, they’ll want to know about all the nitty-gritty details of your property before they sign on the dotted line.
When was the last time you saw your property through fresh eyes? Perform a mock inspection – walk through your property with your “buyer hat” on and keep a critical eye.
Have this questionnaire on-hand to guarantee you’re ticking all the right boxes.
- Doors and Floors
- Are the floors sloping or ‘bouncy’? This could mean the stumps below need replacing.
- Do your doors open and shut freely without hitting the frame?
- Walls and Ceiling
- Are there cracks in the walls or are they buckling?
- Is there any mould or damp patches along the walls or at their base?
- Is the ceiling sagging? This could indicate past roof leaks with possible ongoing maintenance or expensive replacement costs.
- Is water running properly? If so, are there any leaks around the shower or under the sink?
- Is your shower, bath and sinks all sealed with grout or sealant? Is the grout clear of unsightly mould?
- Is there an exhaust fan in the bathroom? If so, does it function properly?
- Flush the toilet and wait for the cistern to refill and stop. Does it refill properly?
- Check behind the toilet when the toilet is flushing. Are there any leaks or excessive sealant? This could indicate past or persistent leaks.
- Are there damp stains around the sink or on the splashback?
- Are there any leaks you should be aware of? (think: sink, fridge, dishwasher, etc.)
- Check the seal between the laundry trough and the wall. Is there a seal? Is it tiled?
- Check the overflow drain pipe in the laundry. Is there any rust? Is it secure?
Call in the Pros
If you find it tough to stay impartial by criticising your property, it might be worth engaging a certified home or building inspector. They will be able to complete a building report on the property.
A professional inspector will be able to find things that your untrained eye may miss. They’ll help you identify areas of improvement, which will help you assess whether they need your immediate attention. You’ll want to tackle anything that could jeopardise the sale of your home.
Your condition report will include:
- A list of faults in the property
- An assessment on whether the faults can be fixed
- The cost of any repairs that may be required
- A list of any unsafe or unauthorised renovations or extensions
Do your best to ensure you’re fully informed and ready to answer the tough questions. Know what costs your buyer might incur and use that information to your advantage when negotiating the sale price of your property. After all, knowledge is power!