Tips on preparing your house for sale

Selling Tips

You may have heard the phrase; you don’t get a second chance to make a good impression.

Creating a great first impression is what counts if achieving a premium price for your property is your goal.

A great first impression is easy to achieve if you have an eye for detail and allow some time to prepare.
Careful planning and knowing how to professionally spruce up your home will send buyers scurrying for their cheque books. These tips are just a guide to help you achieve your outcome.

The preparation you put into getting your property ready for sale can be the difference between getting a standard price and getting a great price. And, the best part is, it’s not hard, time consuming or expensive.


People collect an amazing quantity of various unwanted items. Consider this: if you haven’t used it in over a year, you probably don’t need it.

• If you don’t need it, why not donate it or throw it away?
• Clean off everything on kitchen counters.
• Put essential items used daily in a small box that can be stored in a cupboard when not in use.
• Think of this process as a head-start on the packing you will eventually need to do anyway.

Rent a Storage Unit

Almost every home shows better with less furniture. Remove pieces of furniture that block or hamper paths and walkways and put them in storage. Leave just enough furniture in each room to showcase the room’s purpose and plenty of room to move around. Re-arrange furniture if need be to create a maximum feeling of space. You don’t want buyers scratching their heads and saying, “What is this room used for?”

Remove/Replace Favourite Items

If you want to take window coverings, built-in appliances or fixtures with you, remove them now. If the chandelier in the dining room once belonged to your great grandmother, take it down. If a buyer never sees it, they won’t want it. Once you tell a buyer they can’t have an item, they will covet it, and it could blow your deal. Pack those items and replace them, if necessary. It is a good idea to put valuable items in a safe place during the inspections.

Make Minor Repairs

• Replace cracked floor or wall tiles.
• Patch holes in walls.
• Fix leaky taps.
• Replace cracked glass.
• Replace broken fly screens.
• Fix doors that don’t close properly and kitchen drawers that jam.
• Consider painting your walls neutral colours, especially if you have grown accustomed to purple or pink walls. Don’t give buyers any reason to remember your home as “the house with the orange bathroom.”
• Treat stained carpets

Make the House Sparkle

• Wash windows inside and out.
• Rent a pressure washer and spray down sidewalks and exterior.
• Clean out cobwebs.
• Clean the swimming pool and remove the Kreepy Krauly.
• Tidy the garage to create more space.
• Remove mould from walls.
• Hang up fresh towels.
• Lid of toilet down.
• Wipe over showers.
• Clean grout in bathrooms.
• Polish chrome faucets and mirrors.
• Re-caulk tubs, showers and sinks.
• Clean out the refrigerator.
• Don’t leave dishes in the sink.
• Empty all bins.
• Polish sink and taps.
• Clean oven and hotplates.
• Wash floors.
• Clean all vents and exhaust fans in the home.
• Dust furniture, ceiling fan blades and light fixtures.
• Replace worn rugs.
• Make all the beds.
• Clean and air out any musty smelling areas. Odours are a no-no. Consider burning essential oils.
• Open all curtains and blinds to allow as much natural light in as possible.
• Remove all ashtrays as a smoker’s home isn’t appealing.
• Ensure all light bulbs are working.
• Remove kitty litter and pet bowls and bedding.

Vacuum Daily

• Steam clean carpets.


• Go outside and open your front door. Stand there. Do you want to go inside? Does the house welcome you?
• Linger in the doorway of every single room and imagine how your house will look to a buyer.
• Examine carefully how furniture is arranged and move pieces around until it makes sense.
• Leave all the internal doors open to create a feeling of space.
• Make sure window coverings and paintings hang level.
• Tune in to the room’s statement and its emotional pull. Does it have impact and pizzazz?
• Does the home smell nice?
• Is there a lovely ambience created by music, fresh flowers, a pleasant temperature and cleanliness?

Check Kerbside Appeal

If a buyer won’t get out of their car because they don’t like the exterior of your home, you’ll never get them inside.

• Keep the sidewalks cleared.
• Mow the lawn and trim the edges.
• Ensure the front gate and door are appealing and working correctly.
• Paint faded window trim.
• Plant yellow flowers or group flower pots together. Yellow evokes a buying emotion. Marigolds are inexpensive.
• Prune any overhanging branches.
• Ensure gardens weeded.
• Lawns raked and paths swept.
• Letter box empty.
• Remove oils spills or stains from driveway and garage floor.
• Exterior windows are clean and cobweb free
• Make sure visitors can clearly read your house number.


Buyers for good quality property can be found all year round. With the marketing process having become far more sophisticated than in previous times, the issue of timing is less critical today than in the past. However, there are some important points you may wish to consider.

The time required to sell property that is accurately priced will take in the vicinity of 4 weeks. Prior to placing your property on the market, allow an additional two weeks to prepare both the property and the marketing material in consultation with your agent.

Method of Sale

When it comes to selling your property, there are two most popular methods to choose from:

• Private Treaty (Sale)
• Public Auction

Each has its own advantages and it is advisable to speak to your agent about the benefits of each method.

Our company has successfully utilised both methods, however we have found sale by Public Auction to be the most effective method for properties located in the top 50 suburbs, achieving for vendors a competitive sale price and a 30 day sale.

Also, where a property is likely to attract more than one qualified buyer in the marketplace, auction allows competitive bidding to ensuring the best sale price.