by Renee Edge*
When you’re selling your home, you’ve probably heard countless suggestions on how to get the highest possible price.
But most of them have a high upfront cost with no guarantee of a return on your investment.
For instance, you’re unlikely to get back what you spend on renovations. And interior decorating with new furniture and accessories can be money wasted if they don’t match your next home’s décor.
Since it’s impossible to make your property suit every prospective buyer’s individual taste, use this simple strategy: make it easy for buyers to imagine themselves living there.
Common sense? Absolutely!
Here are five tips to maximise your selling price that won’t cost you a cent!
MIA is military jargon for Missing In Action.
To make buyers imagine that they’re walking into their future home, not visiting someone else’s home, it’s best that you’re not there.
When an agent brings people to inspect your property, make yourself scarce. Go shopping or take a walk.
And hide those framed photos of Aunty Meryl’s 60th birthday and your Year 12 Graduation. They’ll make buyers feel like they’re intruding.
According to statistics, 40 percent of Australian families own a dog, 30 percent own a cat, and 30 percent don’t have either (probably because around 20 percent of people suffer from allergies).
Prince barking his head off when strangers arrive won’t endear non-dog lovers to your home. Fluffy slinking around the house won’t impress people who dislike cats.
That’s a large chunk of potential buyers gone in one fell swoop.
So take Prince for a walk during inspections (you’ll be ‘MIA’ anyway!), and let Fluffy run around in the fresh air outside. With any luck she’ll hide during the inspection.
Remember to hide kennels, feed bowls, leashes, ‘Beware of the Dog’ signs and other pet paraphernalia. Pick up ‘land mines’ in the yard, and remove any fur from the furniture.
Make sure that buyers are aware of local amenities and conveniences that make your neighbourhood a nice place to live in.
Leave a small basket on a coffee table or kitchen bench with leaflets from coffee shops, restaurants, takeaways, clubs and hotels, and a rail or bus timetable.
You can make your home look more spacious simply by re-arranging the furniture.
Reposition any items that block the view from one side of a room to the other should be along – or closer to – a wall. Tidying up clutter has the same visual effect.
You can also make your home look bright and cheerful by opening curtains and blinds. Turn on interior lights, especially in rooms that don’t have direct sunlight (a good real estate agent should do this anyway).
These give buyers the impression that they’re getting ‘more bang for their bucks’ when they compare your property to others that have similar dimensions.
This really shouldn’t be necessary, but I’ll say it anyway. Your home should be spotless and neat as a pin.
Floors scrubbed, windows sparkling, carpets, rugs sofas and armchairs vacuumed, timber furniture and skirting boards wiped down, dishes and cutlery washed and put away.
A little ‘elbow grease’ before inspections costs nothing, but can pay a big dividend!
* Renee Edge is a chartered accountant with a passion for helping people to make the best use of their money. Not only accounting for every cent they spend, but finding simple and cost-effective solutions to everyday problems.
Aus Property Professionals director Lloyd Edge holds real estate licences in NSW and Queensland, and has a thorough knowledge of the Sydney and Brisbane property markets as well as key regional areas in both states. Although Lloyd's a qualified real estate agent, he works on behalf of you, the buyer.
Book a free Aus Property Professionals one-on-one strategy meeting in your home or office, or by phone or Skype. Call Lloyd Edge on 0410 411 047 or send Lloyd an email today!