When it comes to selling, nothing beats making a good first impression. So which part of the house should you lavish attention on to ensure the buyer falls instantly in love with your property?
Imagine you have got only $10,000 left to spend on your sales campaign, should you hire a stylist for a display-home look or splurge on a landscape artist for that awesome back yard?
Harcourts Victoria real estate chief executive Sadhana Smiles suggests bypassing the stylist and focusing on revamping either the bathroom or the kitchen.
“Because when you think about it, women are the ones who make the most decisions about whether they buy a house or not. And for most women, the best part of the house … is the kitchen or the bathroom,” Smiles says.
“So if you’ve got $10,000 left, pick one of those.”
However, she says, if the kitchen and living room overlooks the back yard, then give the outdoors a makeover too so “everything flows beautifully”.
She says polished floorboards, environmentally friendly heating and cooling, or an egg-shaped bathtub can all up the ante.
“It goes into the aesthetics of the home that you are selling,” she says.
“People walk into a bathroom and go, ‘Oh! Can you imagine the beautiful nights I will have with the candles lit, and the glass of wine’.
“They can touch it, feel it, look at it and go ‘that’s what I am buying’.”
Not surprisingly, David McLean from Brisbane’s Furnish & Finish Property Styling and Home Staging, thinks a beautifully styled home will boost the likelihood of a quick sale.
He says sellers should let the professionals make over the master bedroom and the living room at the very least.
“In a really competitive real estate market … you want a number of people to bid a little bit more than you hoped for, and property styling gives you that advantage over other places,” McLean says.
“People might decide they want to tear up the carpet, or knock down a wall … but if the vendor walks in and it has all been beautifully co-ordinated with the accessories, the artwork, the mirrors and the cushions, they don’t need to think, ‘what will I do with the space?’ It’s all been done for them.”
But you may not even need to spend $10,000 to make a mark.
Adelaide’s Ray White Para Hills principal Marco Fellegvari says it is the small things that count.
“The best value for money that you can spend to start off with is a building and pest inspection,” Fellegvari says. “It’s only about $450.
“We could do all these beautiful things in the home, but if we sell the house and the building and termite inspection comes through and there are termites in the house … they fall out of love with it.”
He says a fresh coat of paint, tidying up the yard, and trimming trees are other cost-effective ways to ensure a sale.
“It is all about making seem the home is very maintainable, easy to look after,” Fellegvari says.