When it comes to opening your home for inspection, first impressions count. Present your property in the best light possible with these top tips from our expert property advocate team.
BEFORE THE DAY
1. Clutter and clear any junk
First things first – remove any rubbish or junk inside or outside of your house.
Potential buyers will be looking in every nook and cranny of your property so it’s important you get serious about decluttering the space.
If your storage cupboards are a mess take a trip to Officeworks or IKEA and get some clear boxes or handy boxes and store loose items away. Take larger items out and consider if you need them anymore or not. If you don’t – donate. If you do, consider this your incentive to get packed early and pack them away!
Areas you don’t want to miss:
- Under stair storage
- Back sheds
- Spare bedrooms
- Storage and linen cupboards
2. If it’s broken – fix it!
A smart potential buyer will be looking for ways to negotiate a lower price, so take a good look around and fix anything that’s not in good working order. A little bit of love goes a long way here. We’re not talking a total renovation, but it’s worth taking the time to fix anything you can within your budget.
Areas to consider:
- Outside lights, footpaths, fences and gates
- Cupboard hinges, door handles and hinges, rotting or split windows and door frames
- Dents and bowing in any areas of the property
- Lightbulbs and any special interior fittings
- Gas burners, ovens, built-in appliances
- Pool and spa pumps, buttons, air conditioning & heating installs
- Bathroom and kitchen tiles, taps, hooks and fixtures
- Plumbing – make sure those drains flow properly and tubs are securely sealed!
3. Simplify your style
Just because you love that hot pink chair in your living room that Aunt Edna gave you, does not mean others will. A real estate might tell you that buyers can look past furniture and see potential, but unfortunately that’s not always the case. Make it easy for your buyer to fall in love with your home by choosing styling and furnishing that’s inviting, unobtrusive and cohesive.
Simple is best when it comes to design. Remove any items or furniture that aren’t required in rooms and take a look at whether your decorations are enhancing or detracting from the space. If this isn’t your area of strength then get in touch. We specialise in helping provide advice prior to sale and can even recommend a stylist or interior designer if appropriate.
Questions to ask about the space:
- Art & colour choices – are they loud? Cold? Clashing? Complementary?
- Furniture placement – does it enhance the space or make it feel crowded?
- Texture and furnishings – does the space feel warm and welcoming? Calming?
4. Clear the way
Make sure you provide clear access to key appliances and areas of the property that potential buyers will want to check out. This includes heaters, electrical boxes, hot water system, air conditioning units, attics, garages and any other locked areas.
If areas are located behind locks, be sure to leave a key with your agent so they can provide clear access on the day.
5. Clean it up
Now is the time to get the gloves out and get the house looking clean as a whistle.
Give the garden and yard a tidy up. Trim overgrown trees and plants, clean gutters, hose footpaths, sweep and remove leaves. Remove any dead plants if necessary and ensure the garage and driveway is clean and free of debris.
Inside the house you’ll want to do a thorough Spring clean too. Dust and wipe down walls, clean and replace light fittings, fans, exhaust fans and vents. Clean the oven, wipe the inside and back of cupboards and remove any paperwork or magnets from the front of your fridge.
Treat pests and remove any infestation of bugs or ants from the property. Anything that looks even remotely like a termite will affect your property’s appeal.
ON OPEN DAY
Make sure the property is spick and span, and put Milo and Otis into a boarding home or drop them to a friend’s house for the day.
Open the blinds and let as much natural light into the property as possible. Buy fresh non-scented flowers and place in a nice vase in the centre of the dining table. If the weather permits, leave a couple of windows open.
Lastly, take yourself out of the property at least 30 minutes prior to inspection time. While it may be tempting to want to stick around and see who inspects, it’s honestly best not to. Having an owner hanging around is off-putting for potential buyers.
Final tip: If the property isn’t currently occupied make sure the utilities are left connected after move out date. Potential buyers cannot inspect a property properly without electricity and gas!
If you’re selling your property and need further advice on how to maximise your sale price and prepare for inspection day, get in touch!