Most owners understand that presentation can have a big influence on their final sale price. When it comes to optimising that presentation aspect, owners naturally jump to the spaceswhere they spend the most time, like kitchens and bathrooms when deciding where to spend money.In reality though, if you want to maximise your return on time and money invested, there areother areas of the home where you should be focusing first.
Kitchens and bathrooms can certainly make or break a home, but they are also the most expensive areas to renovate. Meanwhile, you might be able to add far more value, in proportion to your budget, in other areas.
Let’s explore the possibilities…
Value add no.1: Sort out any outstanding consents.
Make sure all your paperwork is up to date. You can have the finest kitchen in the world, but if there is an outstanding consent registered against your home, or work that hasn’t been permitted in the first place, then that could seriously affect your sale price.
So your first job as a seller, before you renovate anything, is to check the status of your property with your local council to make sure everything is up to date.
If you do find an issue, seek advice from your solicitor, local council and any tradespeople involved in the work to find out what needs to be done to complete the sign-off process.
We are also happy to discuss your options with you and this is often part of our pre-listing process.
Your natural reaction at this point might be:
“Why worry? We bought it like this?”.
The problem is, these days banks often won’t lend on properties with serious outstanding consent issues. It doesn’t matter how nice your kitchen is if your buyer can’t borrow money to buy your home in the first place.
Value add no.2: Make overdue repairs to ensure a smooth building inspection process.
Completing the boring maintenance jobs is often where you get the best bang for your buck.
Nothing slows down a real estate sale process more than contracts crashing over a bad builders report.
So before you sell, remove any potential hurdles by sorting problems before they getflagged by the inspector. One option is to pay for your own inspection, so you can find out what needs to be done and hopefully get the work completed before you go on the market.
Buyers are going to get an inspection done, so you might as well know what they are likely to find well before the deal depends on it.
Value add no.3: Sort your section.
Stand on the street outside your property and view your home like a buyer would, visiting for the first time. What stands out to you? What would attract their attention, good or bad?
Focus on making this first impression as welcoming as possible by clearing and cleaning any paths, trimming hedges, painting fences and adding colour (flowers) and plants wherever you can to create a welcoming feel.
Now go through the same process in other key areas of your home. Sometimes a few targeted paint touchups and a few potted plants are all you need to make a house feel like a cherished home.
Value add no.4: Paint for profit.
Speaking of painting, when it comes to adding value, you are unlikely to find anything that provides a better return on investment than painting. Focus on key areas that develop wear and tear like doorways, window frames, steps and fences. Go for neutral, light tones.
Value add no.5: Let’s talk kitchens and bathrooms.
Now that you have tackled the key areas, you can move on to spaces like your kitchen and bathroom, but try to remain objective. Understand that sometimes it’s better to provide a clean, working canvas for your buyer to have fun with, rather than a full complete renovation in a style they may not like.
Sometimes a coat of paint is all you need.
Sometimes new fixtures can make a big difference. These areas should be tackled on a case by case basis as every home is different. Part of our service is helping you decide how far to go in your pre-sale renovation, so please don’t hesitate to get in touch to book a consultation at your property and we can talk through the options together.
At the end of the day, there are lots of ways you can add value, but often the most effective options are the slightly boring ones: Solving problems before they come up and making sure your potential buyer’s initial first impression is a good one.