Preparing Your Home for Sale
Preparing your home for private viewing and show days
When preparing your home for a sale, first impressions count. Prospective buyers should feel at ease, comfortable and free to voice an opinion. For this reason we recommend that if possible, a Seller is not present at the time of viewing. The agent knows the prospective buyer’s requirements and can best highlight the attributes of your home. Do not discuss anything concerning the sale with the prospect directly and never apologise for anything regarding your home as it only accentuates faults or detracts from the value. Also, never try to sell furniture to a prospective buyer before the deal has been concluded.
The following professional hints are designed to assist you in the preparation of your home so that value and opportunity are optimised: –
The Exterior – Kerb Appeal:
- The first impression is crucial. It defines the outcome – whether you have a sale or not. The garden and the outside appearance of your home are therefore very important.
- Ensure that all exterior paintwork is in good condition.
- A neat and pretty garden creates a good impression. Ensure that flower beds and lawns are trimmed and weed-free.
- Roofs, woodwork and gutters should be in good shape.
- Your front entrance needs to be inviting to visitors.
Many a prospective purchaser has overlooked a property because it lacked visual appeal. The fact that the accommodation, position and price suited him is negated.
- Make it as bright and light as you can, open all curtains and blinds and if good weather prevails, open all patio doors.
- Keep the house neat, clean and uncluttered at all times. Pack away any small loose and personal items.
- Steam clean carpets and freshen paintwork, floors and doors.
- Replace any broken tiles.
- Polish wood floors to accentuate the beauty of a natural wooden strip floor. If necessary, replace Novilon flooring in kitchen and bathrooms as minimal spend yields maximum results.
- All lights should be working, globes replaced where necessary.
- In the kitchen, the stove, refrigerator and sink should be spotless and all work spaces clear and clean.
- If basins and bath tubs cannot be spring cleaned, re-enamelling is relatively inexpensive and adds value to your home. Replace broken tiles, fix leaking toilets and dripping taps and repair damaged putty around the bath, basin and shower. A new set of colourful towels and a few flowering pot plants in the bathroom make a positive difference.
- Tidy cupboards – any untidy or overcrowded cupboards suggest inadequate storage space.
- Place fresh flowers in a vase.
- Repair any hairline wall cracks, damaged window panes, broken light fittings and kitchen counter tops. Ensure that windows are clean and that curtain rails are firmly attached to walls. Curtains should be clean and properly hung.
- Check doors and wash paintwork, Polish handles and locks, oil hinges and tighten door knobs, if necessary.
- Pets and pet odours can elicit a negative response from buyers. If necessary, put a few drops of vanilla essence in a hot oven as this helps mask unpleasant odours.
- Tidy the garage and ensure that the garage door works.
- With respect to the garden, keep it neat and tidy. Plant a few trays of flowering annuals to enhance the garden and if a sprinkler system is part of the special features of your home, ensure that it is in good working order. Also check that water features are clean and operational.
- Cut back trees and creepers in front of windows and along the drive and walkways.
- Clean the driveway of any grease and oil marks.
- If there is a carport, make it presentable.
- Make the patio, paths and pot plant containers attractive. Plant fresh, colourful flowers if necessary.
- Attractive outdoor furniture is an advantage. Keep all outdoor steps clear of hazards.
- On a show day, make sure the visitors are able to view all the outbuildings and that they are clean and tidy.
- If you have a pool, keep it pristine so that it sparkles and complements your pool and patio areas. Any algae growth that has stained the marble coating should be removed and treated by pool experts.
THESE FEW HINTS WILL MAKE A POSITIVE DIFFERENCE TO THE PRICE
REMOVAL CHECKLIST – TRY TO GIVE 30 DAYS NOTICE IN EACH CASE
✓ Has your removal date been confirmed?
✓ Has your insurance been arranged?
✓ Have you defrosted your refrigerator?
✓ Has your outside radio and TV aerial been disconnected by a qualified technician?
✓ Have you anchored the drum of your automatic washing machine by attaching the shipping brackets?
✓ Have you arranged to have your stove professionally disconnected (where applicable)?
✓ Have you cancelled your newspaper delivery?
✓ Have you arranged for the disposal of any unwanted furniture with the auctioneer?
✓ Have you put aside the bits and pieces you don’t want to take?
✓ Have you arranged the cancellation or transfer of your telephone line?
✓ Have you sorted out any gas, water or electrical issues?
✓ Have you cleared out the bathroom cabinets and safely disposed of any expired medicines?
✓ Have you tightened the lids on all jars containing liquids?
✓ Have you arranged to have your M-Net or DSTV disconnected?
✓ Have you returned any garden tools, books, DVDs or CDs you may have borrowed?
✓ Have you asked your doctor and dentist to refer you to someone in the town or area to which you are moving?
✓ Have you kept aside jewellery, money, firearms, insurance policies and documents of high value?
HAVE YOU GIVEN NOTIFICATION OF YOUR CHANGE OF ADDRESS TO:
✓ The Post Office for re-direction of mail and transfer of radio and TV licence?
✓ Your bank so that they can transfer your account?
✓ The electoral officer?
✓ Your motor licensing authority?
✓ Your hire purchase service providers?
✓ Your insurance company (motor, household etc)?
✓ Your life assurance company?
✓ The school principal of your children’s school?
✓ Have you requested a letter regarding the status of your children in school?
✓ The municipality regarding your rates and taxes?
✓ Any publications to which you subscribe?
✓ Any lodges, clubs or benefit societies?
✓ Stores where you hold accounts?
✓ Relatives and friends?
✓ Your solicitors and/or accountant?
✓ Your church or place of worship?
✓ Your launderers?
ONE FINAL CHECK…
✓ Have you left anything behind?
✓ Is the geyser switched off?
✓ No taps left running?
✓ Any gas taps turned off?
✓ All lights switched off?
✓ Windows and doors all locked?
✓ Surrendered old house keys?