Tips and Traps for Selling

Tips for Selling your Property at all Times

  • Don't break the bank: You will probably find there is some work to be done on your property in order to present it properly. Make sure you don't break the bank by doing so, because this will be a deduction off the selling price you receive. Stick with the simpler and less expensive repairs and improvements. Stay away from the major work you thin may be needed.

  • Watch your curb appeal: Your curb appeal is important. This is the first impression the buyer will have. Make sure the lawns are neatly trimmed and weeded and look at the exterior of the home and repair any wear or damage, such as peeling paint, cracks on the sidewalks, etc. Clean the outside of the home and the windows. If necessary, give the home (especially the front door) a fresh coat of paint to spruce it up.

  • Watch your price: Be careful that your price is not too high; otherwise buyers will not consider looking at it. If your price is too low, you may be cutting into your profit. It's a good idea to get an appraisal of your property, prior to setting your price because this appraisal will also include the prices of similar properties around your area that were sold in the previous 12 months.

  • Make sure the interior and exterior of your property looks brand new: It's amazing what a professional cleaning company can do to you property, just by giving it a water blast clean or touching up with paint. It's absolutely necessary because it will make the home sparkle.

  • Clear the clutter: When your home is being shown make sure every area is uncluttered and warm. Open the curtains to the sunshine and if possible have some fresh cut flowers around. Everything inside the home must be tidy, because buyers do not want to fall over things lying around. Watch your kitchen because this is a big selling point and make sure your bathrooms and toilet areas are clean and sparkling.

  • Keep out of the way of agents: If a real estate agent is selling your place they may prefer you not to be present. They will also ask you to remove your pets, so they do not distract or scare away the buyers. Do everything you can to assist your agent in presenting your property at its best.

Focus on the Kitchen

If you are selling your home, your best chance of cooking up a sale will be in the kitchen. For today's homebuyer the kitchen is typically the most important room in the home. It is the area where form and function are equally important.

Buyers, especially women buyers, will view the kitchen as the area that needs to perform many functions. It is where the meals are prepared and shared, the mail is sorted, the bills are paid and generally where the family hang out.

A recent overseas survey revealed that 85% of respondents said the condition of the home's kitchen is a major consideration when making a buying decision. A major kitchen overhaul probably doesn't make sense because of the cost when you are selling, but you should do all you can do make the kitchen look its best.

Some things to do to make your kitchen shine include:

  • Think paint: Putting on a fresh coat of paint is an easy, inexpensive way to brighten and revive the kitchen. It's best to stick to neutral colours, such as off white or white because you never know the preference of the potential homebuyers.

  • Freshen up the counter top: If your counter top is old, grungy and outdated, think about a replacement. Most counter tops of the 60's, 70's and 80's era (the tile variety) look pretty bad in the year 2004. Replacing the counter top can be inexpensive and should be done, especially if you don't have much counter space. Try and keep the colours neutral, although it may be tempting to go for strong colours.

  • Get rid of the old stainless steel faucet - update it with a sleek stylish replacement. This doesn't cost a lot of money and the new ones come in assorted ranges of materials and colours.

  • Curtains - While you are in the bathroom looking at the taps, replace the bathroom curtains etc.

  • Knobs - Look at the knobs on the drawers and replace some of the old boring knobs with some new polished ones.

  • Kitchen Clutter - Get rid of the clutter in the kitchen: Keep it clean. Put all your cookbooks, paperwork, and old takeaway menus into a cupboard so they are not seen.

  • Bring in the light: Make sure the blinds are opened and that there is plenty of light coming into the kitchen and dining room. The patio and courtyard area should be included in this.

  • Display it: If your kitchen includes a desk space where you home a computer, it may be a good idea to move the computer into a different area to give the kitchen and family room more space.

  • Check appliances: Make sure that all your appliances have been maintained well and are working property. Also, give them a good clean.

  • Bake: Some agents have suggested that it's a good idea to do some baking at the time you have an open home. There's nothing like an enticing smell coming from the kitchen to make people feel at home. Some say that this is now "old hat" but it still works.

In summary, just use common sense when presenting your home and bear in mind that the kitchen area that can often make or break a sale.