The more listed homes I have seen over the years, the more I have come to realise that there are a few preparations that really should be tackled due to their big impact on the presentation of a property, but for some reason, are frequently overlooked
This post is all about sharing with you my 3 big impact preparation pointers that sellers most commonly overlook when getting their homes ready to sell, along with why they are so crucial.
It is commonly accepted that some degree of preparation is required before placing a property on the market and it doesn’t matter the particulars of the property in question, this is always the case.
The types of issues that should be given our attention have been discussed and written about, to the point that it is tiresome. General topics such as curb appeal, de-cluttering and cleaning, just to name a few, are constantly mentioned in generalised terms, but here are some specific things that you should check off your property presentation list to ensure that your property has the edge over it’s competition.
Check the Lights & Light Globes
The photos used in the marketing of a property are obviously the first point of contact a prospective purchaser has with a property and are ultimately what entices them to inspect the home, or not bother, as the case may be.
A lot of focus is placed on presenting the home in terms of furniture, artwork and accessories and this is quite rightly so. What is rarely, if ever emphasized is, assuming you have the physical presentation right, what can you further do to enhance the quality and appeal of your real estate photos.
"The answer is incredibly simple and equally inexpensive..."
The answer is incredibly simple and equally inexpensive.
Any photographer will tell you that lighting is a vital component of capturing a great shot, and in real estate photography the principal is no different.
Therefore, all that we need to do is ensure that we are providing the best possible lighting for the photographer to work with.
Firstly, check that all light globes, in all light fittings are actually working. Nothing screams lack of home maintenance (and a low care-factor) louder in a photo than a blown globe in a multi-globe light fitting.
Next, and very important, is to remove & replace all energy saving globes for the duration of the sales campaign (you can always re-install them afterwards, if you prefer), ensuring that all globes used are the standard, incandescent style. You will not believe the difference this step alone makes to the final images.
This obviously does not apply to specialised globes such as down-lights.
"Bonus Tip: Don’t forget the outside lights, particularly the one at the front of the home."
Bonus tip: Don’t forget the outside lights, particularly the one at the front of the home.
Finally, layer your lighting. Adding floor and or table lamps to every room will enhance the lighting dramatically and is a step that really should not be skipped.
For the photography session and at each inspection, ensure all lights and lamps are switched on, irrespective of the time of day.
Wash the House
So, your photos look fantastic and your buyer has driven by your house and likes what they see. It’s all looking good.
Your house may look great from the street, but as your prospective purchaser is standing on the front verandah, how does it look to them then?
The fine film of dust and dirt that builds up over time on paintwork serves to make it look worn upon close inspection and it also alludes to the fact that the property may be unclean inside & unmaintained throughout, even when that is not the case.
"You don't want to put a purchaser into this frame of mind..."
You do not want to put your purchaser into this frame of mind, before they have entered the house, especially when you’ve worked so hard in getting them to this point!
At a fraction of the cost of painting, pressure washers are inexpensive to hire and very easy to operate. The task is not overly strenuous (but can be messy!) and the reward is immense.
On so many occasions, clients, agents and purchasers have commented that homes look freshly painted as a result of this exercise and that is a great advantage to any seller.
Fresh Air & Natural Light
It is so often overlooked that prospective purchasers utilise all of their senses when inspecting a property.
During the cooler months, when our homes are closed up more often and we also spend more time indoors, it can be difficult for us to detect how our homes smell.
In preparation for all inspections, open windows and doors to allow fresh air into the property and to disperse any odours that have accumulated from cooking, pets, incense, air fresheners or damp. Ideally, the building should smell like nothing.
"Ideally, the building should smell like nothing..."
To complement this, ensure that heating or cooling is operated and has sufficient time to return the temperature to a comfortable level before any scheduled inspection takes place.
Similarly, having natural light entering a room opens up the space and makes it feel cleaner and fresher. Always ensure that all window coverings are opened and whenever the view out the window is pleasant, ensure the window panes are fully exposed.
What do you think? Do you have a 'must do' tip for people preparing their homes for sale? Please share your ideas in the comments.
Jo Powell is the Director of 3 Pea's Property Styling. Combining her creative skills with her accounting background to assist her clients to achieve the best possible outcomes in the sale of their property.