Declutter. The goal is for people to imagine themselves and their possessions living in the space. To achieve this, you’ll need to depersonalize each room, and clear it of any items that evoke emotion or are polarizing to the viewer. Remove all the excess clutter, take down photos and posters. The kitchen should be mostly emptied of appliances bar a good-looking kettle and toaster! If you have only an older, beat up set, conceal them in the cupboard. Empty the top and front of the fridge. Each room should have the bare minimum of furniture, with plenty of space around each object to ‘breathe’. Professional Home Stager Meredith Baer, who has staged properties in the U.S for clients such as Madonna, Christina Aguilera and Jimmy Kimmel, recommends clients ”clear out 75% of their stuff”. That’s how much you should aim to empty your house for it to feel spacious, uncluttered and for people to imagine their things in the space.
Clean. Conduct a thorough, detailed clean of your entire house. Clean the windows, blow the leaves off the front path and clear the roof gutters. Vacuum the door tracks and window runners. Polish the chrome and stainless steel and make sure the kitchen is gleaming. Scrub the walls with sugar soap: we use Sellys Original Sugar Soap, which is low cost and available at Bunnings. Even most older homes can look and smell much nicer when they’ve been cleaned properly.
Invest. Spend a few dollars at cheap places like kmart.com.au. A matching towel and bathmat can go a long way and really unify a bathroom. Throw a few throw cushions in co-ordinating colours on the couch if yours are looking a bit shabby. One ROI will be that you get to take these new homewares to your new place! Although surfaces like tables, benchtops and buffets should be clear of any clutter, a few key items strategically placed will elevate the room and really warm it up. It shouldn’t feel too sterile as this can be unwelcoming. A couple of wine glasses with a bottle of red on the outdoor setting at the best possible vantage point can invite buyers to imagine themselves enjoying the space, and really sell the idea of the lifestyle they will be purchasing.
Style like a pro. A little love can go a long way. Keep colours neutral and softened. White walls are best as they are like blank canvases for buyers to visualise their own art and furniture against it. Simple is best- if you do leave a few things out, a simple glass vase or bowl atop a table is better then anything fussy or detailed. Open the windows to invite breeze and the smell of fresh air into each room. If you don’t trust your own intuition when it comes to styling your home, it might be worth leaving it to the experts and considering a Home Stager. Consult your Estate Agent if you think you may need one.
Think fresh fruit and flowers. A simple bowl of fruit on the table or kitchen bench brings life, colour and fragrance to a home! Double points for a bowl of fruit on a coffee table in the lounge- very chic and elegant! Fruit looks better when it is all the same colour- for example, a bowl of lemons or green apples. Fresh flowers can look and smell fantastic; make sure you refresh the water before each open house. To keep in budget, try sourcing flowers from your local Farmers Markets.
Fix and repair. Ensure any repairs and obvious fixes are made before any visitors arrive. Lights that don’t work, decking that needs repairing and creaky doors are small, relatively inexpensive fixes that can help contribute to an overall positive experience for the potential buyer. The last thing you want is for a small, easy fix to turn off buyers and make them question either your asking price, or if there are any other hidden problems.
Book a Pre-sale Inspection. A Pre-Sale Inspection can help you to avoid any surprises that could negate your optimum property price, and is therefore well worth the cost.
You don’t need to spend a fortune when listing your home for sale. These are just a few of the many improvements you can make without outlaying too much money. A little love can go a long way, so remember to just keep things clean, fresh, neutral and simple, and leave a comment on any ideas you’ve tried that we’ve missed!
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