The preparation you put into getting your property ready for sale can be the difference between getting a standard price and a great price. The best part is, it’s not hard, time consuming or expensive. Whatever your motive for selling, the process should be stress free. The good news is that you have the ability to choose the riht agent to ensure that this is the case.
There are only a few major steps in the selling process from start to finish. They are:
- Choose the right agent for you
- Decide on the method of sale and selling strategy
- Set a price or price range for your property
- Develop a marketing plan
- Market and showcase your property
- Negotiate and accept an offer
- Sign the contract for sale
- Wait for settlement (usually 6 weeks)
- Plan your move
Now take time to consider what’s for sale….
Now is the time to get really clear on what you will be including in the sale. Many fixtures and fittings can easily be removed without causing damage – such as precious light fittings, curtains to match a bedroom suite, garden pots, birdbaths etc.
The exclusion of select items from a sale usually won’t impact on the final price achieved when everyone involved is perfectly clear on what to expect BEFORE negotiations commence. So if there is anything you want to make certain moves with you, it must be written into the contract for sale. We will discuss what to include and exclude with you further when you meet.
Buyers for a property can be found all year round however it’s not often that a purchaser for your home is out there, just waiting for you to put your home on the market. Timing, presentation and advertising are all required to bring buyers and sellers together for the best result.
Spring is often considered to be the best time to sell. It’s a time of optimism and with the weather clearing, more potential buyers will be out and about. It is also a time when more sellers will put their homes on the market so there will be more competition. Winter usually presents fewer buyers, but the buyers are usually more focussed on purchasing and traditionally there will be fewer homes on the market to choose from.
Prior to placing your home on the market, allow an additional two weeks to prepare both the property and the marketing material.
A tidy home says “Welcome”. Your home should be kept neat and tidy during the period of inspections. It should not necessarily be a “show place” but appear a comfortable home in which to live. Fresh flowers or indoor plants always brighten up a home. While you’re cleaning, think about each room and what furniture really needs to be in it. Rooms look smaller when they are crowded. Clear out anything that’s not needed to create a feeling of spaciousness. Make sure that all minor repairs are completed. Sticking doors and windows, loose door knobs, faulty plumbing, or peeling paint may affect your sale. Let plenty of light into your home. Nothing improves atmosphere more than brightness. And on a dull day switch on some lights prior to arrival of prospective purchasers. A warm comfortable heated home on cold days adds a feeling of cosiness; on a hot day don’t forget to turn on any air conditioning or fans (or simply let the breeze flow through).
Some general points to consider…
Make the property feel inviting
Buyers (even investors) like to imagine they’d enjoy living in a property, so make it easy for them to feel good about your place. Gentle music, a fragrant oil burner and a few scattered cushions can make all the difference on inspection day. The power of emotion is amazing, even with the most astute purchaser. Perhaps even hire some modern furnishings, or whatever suits the style of your property to create that perfect package.
Less is more
Clear the clutter. It will make it easier to keep the property tidy for inspections and rooms will feel more spacious to buyers.
Let the sun shine in
Everyone loves sunshine when they are looking to buy, so open up blinds and curtains for inspections. After 35 years in real estate, we have never had a buyer complain of too much sun.
Fix outstanding repairs
Especially visible ones. Even the smallest of problems can make buyers wary about other less obvious issues. So its best to fix what buyers will see and make the property appear well cared for.
Clean up lawns and gardens plus remove rubbish
This may seem self explanatory, yet it’s often the garden that is last on the list of things to do. If you’ve spent time and money with your property’s presentation, a small investment in finishing off gardens can be extremely worthwhile.
Remember we live in a beautiful part of the world where the outdoor areas can be just as valuable as indoors for many buyers.
Your choice of marketing methods…
Following is an outline of the three most common methods of marketing property for sale. Property marketing has become quite sophisticated in recent years, so your choices are almost endless. You may select one of the methods below or even a combination of all three.
A public auction is generally a 5 week strong marketing campaign where all interested parties gather at the conclusion of the campaign to bid publicly for the property’s purchase (offers can be made and accepted prior to the auction date if the seller desires). Now this can be the best or worst way to market your property for sale. If you have a property with broad market appeal, then it can be ideal. If you are searching for a specific type of purchaser, or have varied needs yourself – such as an extended settlement, then it may be too limiting for you.
Many agents will suggest an auction campaign, regardless of the property or owner’s needs as they are relatively easy to manage and provide a result in a specific time frame. We will discuss the auction process with you in greater detail so you can decide if it’s the best path to follow.
A private treaty sale offers plenty of flexibility. You can advertise with or without a price, use a price range, plus you have no limitations concerning time. It may take a week, or months – depending on your requirements. Similarly, there is often no sense of urgency for buyers. Again this is a very effective method of marketing for the right property, under the right set of circumstances. Once we discuss your needs in more detail, we can explain the real benefits if this method is more suitable for your property and circumstances.
The mistake sometimes made with private treaty is thinking that this allows you to “save” money on advertising and property marketing. This can have the very real and opposite
effect of costing you both time and money. At John Flood & Co. we have a saying…”It’s hard to sell a secret.” Poor or no marketing investment can see a sluggish buyer response to your property. This can cause a timeframe “blow out” and a “what’s wrong with it” buyer view if your property “hangs around” too long on the market.
Expressions of interest
Expressions of interest or tender marketing asks the buyer to put forward their highest and best offer – almost like a “closed door” auction. Sometimes there is a deadline for
submissions, sometimes not. Tender arrangements are reasonably common for development sites and commercial purchases, however not so with residential sales. The result can be
tremendous as buyers may offer a higher price in exchange for amended terms of sale, such as a delayed settlement, or lesser deposit. Everyone has different needs and this method identifies exactly that. As it’s not a common marketing method for residential property, it can frighten potential purchasers – so again this method is suitable for some properties but not others.
It depends on your most likely buyer profile and your specific needs.
Remember, the name of the game is to make it easy for purchasers to buy. Every marketing method has its place. Your agent will explain the most suitable method to your individual situation.