The biggest myth in home selling is that you have to spend a fortune to increase the value of your home. The truth is that even small tricks can work wonders when it comes to the presentation of your home for sale (both in pictures and in person). And on the flip side, a lack of effort could actually cost you money… ouch!
We love smart investments and doing a lot with less so we thought we’d talk to an expert on how you can create some wow factor in your home and give yourself the best chance of a receiving a great sale price. Robyn Wigmore is a real estate agent with 10 years’ experience in helping her clients present their homes beautifully on a shoestring budget. We got her to spill her top tips on getting homes camera (and open home) ready and we’re excited to share them with you.
1: First Impressions
Most of us tend to decide whether we like the feel of a house before we’ve even stepped in the front door. Go outside and look at your home objectively. Consider replacing the doormat and adding a wreath, cleaning the mailbox, mulching the gardens and doing some weeding so it’s nice and tidy.
2: Home Sweet Home
Most buyers are looking for a home, not just somewhere to lay their heads. Look for opportunities to add homely touches like a lovely silk flower arrangement, a fresh soy candle and a cosy throw rug on the couch. However, keep in mind that they need to feel like it could be their home – not someone else’s – so try to remove the family photos and kids’ artwork as those kinds of things will work against you.
Nothing will turn a buyer off quicker than a messy, cluttered house. The time to declutter is as soon as you decide to sell, not just before moving. Set aside time (as long as it takes – whether it’s a day or a few weeks) to get rid of your excess ornaments, paperwork, toys – even furniture! – and aim to have no more than one decorative item per surface space (even then, choose it carefully). Try to follow a theme and ensure anything on display looks intentional as well as clean and in good order.
4: Have a “junk” room
Your garage (or shed/storage unit) is the one place buyers will forgive you for leaving messy, so take advantage of it. If you need to, start packing early to help minimise the clutter (hey, nothing wrong with a head start on the move!) and if you have any random pieces of furniture that clash with the rest of your home, consider hiding them – at least for the photos.
5: It’s all in the details
Even the smallest of details can be picked up in photographs. One of those is bathroom towels – make sure they match and are folded neatly. Also wonderful in improving the appearance of a room are bedspread covers. If yours are looking old and tired (or don’t match), go out to Kmart and buy some. They’re a small investment but they can really pay off in the long run.
6: Pets? What pets?
You may have the friendliest, most adorable fur buddies on the planet, but they should NOT be part of the sales process. Remove the beds, food bowls, litter bowls and any other evidence for both the photos and open homes, and take them for a walk or to a friend’s place during inspections. You might even want to ask an objective neighbour over to assess the pet smell factor and if it’s a problem, have your carpets shampooed (and invest in a few extra candles).
7: Think like Mary Poppins
Sorry, but a tidy house isn’t good enough. If you want your home to present as “practically perfect” it’s time to get cleaning. Do it yourself, hire someone, get the kids involved – we don’t care how you do it, as long as it’s done. Floors, windows, mirrors, surfaces, sinks, the lot. A sparkling home is a home your potential buyers can visualise living in.
Have any other advice for presenting your home for sale?
Let us know via the comments below and don’t forget to share this with anyone who’s thinking about selling their home – they’ll thank you for it!