The first commandment buy research of selling a house is writ in stone: positive first impressions are of paramount importance.
“Everything has to do with the first impression at walk-in” “If a property is disappointing from the start, prospective buyers will begin to wonder what else is wrong. They stay away from what looks run-down.”
Aside from the known sure strategy of a fresh repaint, in rebooting your house for the sales campaign there are a whole lot of cost-effective tweaks and tricks that can make positive impact.
“Gardens” Vendors just don’t realise the importance of a well presented garden”. Our endorsement is that “gardens don’t take much”. “But we can tell you, “people will buy lovely old gardens even if the house is tired.”
Also the little niceties that add value: “Changing house numbers and letter boxes; changing external and internal door fronts, handles, knobs and knockers. Changing tap ware, towel rails and toilet roll holders … and refinishing floorboards.”
Then what about redoing entire kitchens and bathrooms, under-roof items that don’t need permits? “On a property that is 90 per cent there and is only let down by a dated kitchen, that can be a good thing to do. If the whole place is run-down, don’t bother.”
Litt Projects has a rule of thumb on renovating kitchens and bathrooms, which are are indeed the rooms that can seal the deal on most houses: “If it’s a two-bedroom, dime-a-dozen unit, don’t touch it. Let the buyers do it. If it’s a waterfront property and you can spend $30,000 to make $50,000, then do it.”
Another rules is, “Don’t do it yourself. People are looking for professional quality now and the houses that do get a premium have obvious quality to their presentations. So get the professionals in. It’s worth it. Because when buyers see something of tangible quality that they can move right into, they’ll pay the price.”
On the theme of spending the dollars where they will be seen, if you have enough time and money to continue tweaking consider replacing slumping perimeter or front fencing. New curtains and blinds on the front windows can help.
Garden: Tidying, pruning and prettying up a townhouse from $1000. For a larger garden (including mulch and waste removal), from $1200 to $2000-plus. Pruning to reveal or frame any good view is vital.
Pressure cleaning: Paving and house exteriors $300 to $400 for a half day.
Fencing: Perimeter fences $55 to $100 each lineal metre. Picket fencing $60 to $180 each lineal metre. Gates $600 to $900.
Paint: Interior $8 to $25 each square metre. Exterior $12 to $60 each square metre.
Floors: Re-sanding and polishing floorboards $75 each square metre. New carpet $35 to $159 each square metre.
New vinyl: $65 to $120 each square metre.
Tiling: $120 each square metre, tiles average $30 each square metre.
Bigger changes: Bathroom or en suite $10,000 to $25,000. Kitchen makeover from $12,000 to $30,000.