The property market is alive and buzzing in Spring, with an abundance of buyers and great weather for home inspections. That said, many properties will inevitably make their way onto the market, which means you’ll have a bit of work to do to ensure your investment stands out.
Groom your property for its grand entrance onto the market. Take advantage of the season and give the dwelling a once-over before hitting the ‘For Sale’ board with these 10 top tips for preparing your home for a successful spring sale.
- Tidy the garden
Spring is when everything is starting to burst into life, so it’s the best time of year to capitalise on what nature has already provided. If your garden is overgrown, and if you’re not inclined to get out there in your overalls, then it isn’t expensive to get someone in to give the garden the once-over. Plant some colourful spring flowers near the front door and repair or repaint front fences. Kerb appeal is important, as a lot of people make up their minds about a property before they even enter the house.
Cost: Around $20 per hour for a gardening service
Estimated added value: From $2,000
- De-clutter outside areas
Remove any things lying around in your backyard – they’re either things you want to keep, so give them a new home; things you don’t want but someone else might, so give them away or sell them; or they’re rubbish, so get rid of them!
Estimated added value: $2,000–5,000
- Refresh outdoor entertaining areas
People often forget that an outdoor entertaining area is an extra living space, like another room. If your outdoor furniture is in poor condition, replace it. Remember that you can always take it with you to your new home. If necessary, repaint the deck and repair cracked concrete. Tiling or decking over cracked concrete is usually a more cost-effective solution than trying to patch up the problem.
Estimated added value: $5,000
- Paint interior walls
It’s amazing how much a new paint job can refresh a home. Remember that even if you like bright colours, this isn’t a good selling point. Feature walls are a great idea, but try to keep them in the earth tones – this will appeal to the widest number of buyers and is more likely to suit a potential buyer’s furniture.
Cost: $2,000–5,000 (or just the cost of the paint if DIY)
Estimated added value: $5,000–10,000
- Clean the roof
This is one of the first things people see when they drive up to a home – and something a lot of vendors forget about. Does your roof need pressure cleaning or repainting?
Estimated added value: $15,000–20,000
- Update your kitchen and bathroom
Kitchens and bathrooms are major selling points and if people can see a lot of money has to be spent in these areas, it can put them off buying. Often the carcass of the kitchen cabinet is fine, but the facade is dated. It’s amazing what new cupboard doors and handles can do. Bathroom wall tiles can now be sprayed instead of being replaced and will cost about half the price.
Costs: Kitchen: $500–1,000
Estimated added value: Kitchen: $6,000–8,000 / Bathroom: $4,000–6,000
- Update appliances
It’s worth spending the money updating appliances that are going to stay in the home, such as stoves and ovens. A potential buyer could be put off if they see all the appliances need replacing.
Estimated added value: $10,000 (for an outlay of $3,000)
- Replace worn furniture
Replace tired furniture where possible, keeping in mind that you can take it with you to your next home. Prospective buyers can’t always visualise what a room could look like, so you have to make it look as good as you can.
Estimated added value: $20,000–30,000 (for an outlay of $5,000)
- Replace old carpets and floor coverings
Tired and worn carpets won’t sell a house. New floor coverings will give everything a lift – it is money well spent.
Estimated added value: $25,000–30,000 (for $8,000, full house replacement)
- De-clutter your house
Store your personal items out of sight. You’ll have to pack them up to move house anyway, so why not get a head-start? If you have small children, get large, stylish boxes to put all the toys in on inspection days.
Cost: Nil to approx $200 if you purchase packing boxes or source them from your local supermarket
Estimated added value: Up to $30,000
Source: Your Investment Property