Two weeks ago we sold our house for $100,000 more than what we bought it for seven years ago. Not a bad profit, is it? Especially in the current property market.
So how did we do it, you ask? I’ll give you some tips to sell your house with ease.
1. Choose a reputable real estate agent
We went with a real estate agent who had been in the area for many years and had a good track record at selling houses and a great reputation. He is also with a national real estate chain. Just my opinion, but I think smaller real estate agents don’t have the scope of clients a big chain does. Also, their commission tends to be higher. Most real estate agents charge 2-3% of the sale price of the home. As larger real estate agencies have a lot of houses on their books they tend not to charge as much for selling the house.
2. Don’t go with all the bells and whistles
Real estate agents will try and sell you all the upgrades of selling a house. a) you don’t need a photo board on the front of your house with lighting etc. A simple real estate agent branded ‘For Sale’ sign will suffice. If a potential buyer is interested in the property, they will look at the pictures online or will come to an open for inspection.
Definitely go with online advertising of the property (ie listed on realestate.com.au or domain.com.au) . Nearly 80% of homes are viewed online before an inspection of the property. It might cost a bit but it is worth every cent.
When the agent is discussing advertising costs etc think “Do we really need it?”.
2. Don’t over price yourself.
When we were looking at buying our new house there were so many houses priced far above the average selling price for the area we were looking in. Those houses have now been on the market for six months or more. A lot of them have been taken off the market as they just aren’t selling.
Go through listings around your area and get an idea of how much similar houses are selling for in your area and have a price range in mind before talking to a real estate agent. I have noticed a lot of agents are overpricing houses at the moment, I guess the more they sell the house for, the higher their commission.
3. Presentation, Presentation, Presentation
Presentation is everything when it comes to selling your home. First thing I suggest you do, is walk across the street and have a look at your house. The front of your house is the first point of call for any purchaser, so it has to be appealing. What can you do to grab their attention? Tidy the garden of weeds or overgrowth, clear up clutter, clean off cobwebs, maybe even paint around the windows?
As I said before, we looked at many houses before we picked our new home and there were so many sellers who hadn’t done anything to their house to appeal to buyers. One house in particular we quite liked had weeds in the garden, overgrown miniature roses, pealing paint on window sills and masts. It was appalling, as the house was only a few years old. Another house we looked at was nice from the front but had holes in the walls, power points hanging out etc. it really was shocking and they wanted $60,000 more than the average home was selling for in the area. I noticed yesterday while driving past they had taken it off the market.
We painted the whole house through and put new carpet in before we listed it. We used a neutral colour throughout and neutral carpet. Bright coloured walls and feature walls really don’t appeal to a lot of people, so go a neutral colour such a beige/ light brown/ white. The buyer may want to change the colours later but when selling you want to appeal to as many people as possible. Not a lot of people want to paint or renovate and just want to move into a house without having to do a lot to it.
If painting or new carpets are not in your budget, clean the walls with sugar soap and get the carpets cleaned. You will be rewarded once you sell the house. This really is an instance of “Spend money to make money”. Although, don’t spend a lot on doing things around the house as you may over capitalise when you don’t need to.
You want the house to look as open and the rooms to look as large as possible, so clear out any furniture you don’t need. Clear off ornaments and any clutter off the top of tables, desks, drawers etc. Think of your house as a display home!
I cannot stress how important it is to have your house sparkling and spotless. As I said before, presentation is key! As well as cleaning the house throughout, we also tidied the garden and bought new crushed rock for the paths and pine bark to freshen up the garden beds. All for $50 and it made a huge difference to the overall look of the front and back yards.
So there you go. There are my tips for selling your home. Good luck!