Tips to Control your Emotions When Selling

It is completely normal to have an emotional connection with your home. However, you can’t afford to let feelings hold you back when you are selling your home.

It doesn’t matter if you are a baby boomer downsizing, an owner-occupier upgrading or an investor aiming to profit. You must keep your feelings in check in order to sell your home quickly and for the highest possible price.

Most people feel that their home is not just an asset. It is a space they associate with family, security, happiness and comfort. This is the reason a mounting body of research states that selling a home can be one of the most stress-inducing experiences of a person’s lifetime.

Depending on your situation, there are various reasons for your attachment but the following are the most common:

It is the place of your childhood memories

Our home is the setting of our lives. It is where we grew up, spending many blissful moments with family and friends. These memories are an important part of your identity and give us the feeling of connection to the place where the memories happened.

It links you to family history

In certain situations, a home has been handed down through generations, or has played a major role in family connections. Thus, some people find it difficult to let go and can feel like they are losing a family member.

It is the place where you celebrated milestones

Celebrations at home are a huge part of life including birthdays, barbeques, engagement parties and even the occupational backyard wedding. We frequently reminisce about these special times with our home starring prominently in the memory.

You made your home your own

It is seldom that people move into a house and not make any changes. Whether it is getting new furniture, applying a fresh coat of paint, or adding a new deck, you may have done something in your property. This brings out a feeling of pride and a powerful connection that can be hard to ignore when it is time to move on.

Use your emotions or ignore them?

Though it seems counterproductive, there are some instances when sellers can channel their love of their home towards helping in finding a new owner by thinking like a buyer.

If you feel pride in your home, you are more likely to pay more attention to it and make sure it is ready before putting it on the market.

Homeowners who are emotionally involved are more likely to choose a real estate agent who cares and will make an effort to highlight all the major features when leading prospective buyers on open inspections.

These are constructive ways to utilise your emotions to get better results, but many sellers will let their emotions get in the way. This could lead to rush decisions that may cost massive amounts of money.

Emotional reasons for selling your home

Death, a serious injury and other major life events in the family are typical reasons for selling a home, often creating more emotional burden for the sellers.

In other instances, family relatives are so advanced in age that they can no longer care for themselves and their home.

Certainly, divorce is one of the hardest situations that can trigger strong emotions. Selling can be made complicated when one or both parties don’t want to move or agree on the price.

However, the emotional toll is not only felt by owner/occupiers. Investors can also feel a roller coaster of emotions when selling an investment property. This is particularly true when there is a deadline they must meet, a tight budget, or the need to offload in a declining market.

Tips to prepare yourself emotionally

The best way for sellers to move forward is through detachment. Say goodbye to your home and begin viewing it as a “product” at the early stage of the process. It is also vital to do market research and to keep an open mind.

Tips to keep your emotions in check when selling:

  1. View your house not as a sentimental asset but as a product
  2. Conduct research to make sure you price it correctly and be familiar with market trends
  3. Bid your house farewell as you prepare it for sale and ensure you are pleased with what you are putting on the market
  4. Use impersonal items for staging your home, so it starts to feel less like your home and more like someone else’s home
  5. Ensure you hire an agent to list and sell the property – it will be far more emotional if you try listing the property yourself
  6. Place yourself in the shoes of the buyer, think about how glad the next family will be in the home you helped build
  7. Be familiar with what the market is doing and be sensible about its time on the market
  8. Make sure not to be around when prospective buyers visit. If it upsets you to hear feedback from prospective buyers, request for your agent to keep details at a minimum
  9. Keep your attention on your new home. Think about the positives and visualise living in the new home.
One Agency Annette Pinkerton

Future lies with individuals, not brands!

One Agency Annette Pinkerton

Competition among franchises for top agents is fierce and it seems they will promise the world and then under deliver!

Now more than ever franchises and independent agencies are becoming more and more irrelevant.  Especially the ones where you see two agents advertised on the one property.  In this scenario, one agent will generally be the listing agent and the other will be the buyers agent.

The real problem here for franchises is that they are forgetting that “People don’t list with companies; they list with individuals.”

“People don’t list with brands; it’s the individual agent that is important.”  In the above scenario, sellers list with an agent they like then hardly get to work with them as the buyers agent often is the one working on the listing while the listing agent, the one they like, is out looking for another listing!

This doesn’t happen when an agent is the brand!

Times have changed, especially with Covid-19 in our lives and the traditional model of being part of a brand and in an office to capture buyers and sellers is now a thing of the past.

The internet transformed the way buyers and sellers engage with agents over 20 years ago.  Now, more than ever, if a buyer wants to buy in an area they just get online. They look through the listings, they contact the agent, and they go and meet that agent at the property.

Sellers no longer need to list with a local agency, either. Sellers can now list with the agent of their choice.  So the question we should be asking is, What’s the actual point of the local office now and what is the effect?

The fact is, there is no point to having a local office.  And while agents and properties managers are now working form home, I hope that our industry embraces the remote model I’ve been working since 2013. Let’s face it, it cost money to run an office and the reality is that someone has to pay for it.  Since buyers don’t pay for agents, it’s the sellers who are footing the bill for the expenses relating to the local office.  I’ve personally only had 2 buyers and no sellers come into my office since I started my career 11 years ago, and both were to register for an auction which could be done on line or in a coffee shop if we chose to.

Let’s face it, franchises and independent real estate offices are struggling to pay expenses in today’s competitive and costly world.  While branding is essential the only brand that’s really imperative is the agent’s own brand!  The smart sellers of this next decade will come to realise that the franchises and independent brands that work from an office are aggressively trying to increase their turnover to cover expenses.  They will do best to choose an agent who works on a lower turnover giving the agent more time to get the best result.





What Happens Once You Accept an Offer?

You had been patient as your home went through open inspections, faced a hard bargaining, and finally determined which furniture you want to keep and what to donate. But what really happens once you have accepted an offer?

There are three main processes you need to undergo to complete the sale of your home:

  • Exchange contracts and get the deposit
  • Survive the cooling-off period.
  • Settlement

So what happens at each stage?

  1. Exchanging of contracts

Through this process, you acquire a legally-binding document that verifies the price and conditions of the sale.

The buyer will sign the Contract of Sale document. The document includes the price, the deposit amount, the amount owing at settlement, property details, the settlement period, and other terms of the sale, such as the property being covered by finance.

Other items included in the documents are the buyer’s and seller’s names, and information on each of the party’s legal representatives.

During this period, the buyer transfers the deposit, which is usually 10% of the purchase price but can be as little as 0.25% deposit if opting to exchange contracts with a cooling off period.

This deposit should never be paid directly to the seller; it should be given to their agent to be entrusted in a trust account until settlement.

  1. The cooling-off period

Like what the name signifies, the cooling-off period is the time given to the buyer in case they reconsider their decision and terminate the sale.

The buyer should inform the seller or their lawyer in writing if they have a change of heart during this time. Afterwards, the deposit will be returned to the buyer, less the applicable penalty.

The rules around the cooling-off period differ in each state and territory, including those related to its duration, the penalties that might apply, the property types that it applies to. For example, in NSW, the cooling-off period is 5 days.

Regardless of the location of the property, the cooling-off period doesn’t apply to properties purchased at auction.

Here are the different rules relating to cooling-off throughout Australia:

State Cooling-off period Penalty
Victoria 3 business days $100 or 0.2% of the purchase price , whichever is higher.
New South Wales 5 business days Buyer forfeits 0.25% of the purchase price to the seller.
Queensland 5 business days Seller may keep 0.25% of the purchase price from the deposit paid by the buyer.
South Australia 2 business days Any deposit paid that was over $100 will be refunded in full, but the buyer forfeits any holding deposit.
Northern Territory 4 business days Both purchase deposit and holding deposit will be refunded to the buyer.
Western Australia No cooling-off period applies unless contract specifies a cooling-off period No cooling off period applies unless contract specifies a cooling-off period
Tasmania No cooling-off period applies to any sale of property in Tasmania No cooling-off period applies to any sale of property in Tasmania
Australian Capital Territory 5 business days Buyer forfeits 0.25% of the purchase price to the seller.


  1. Settlement period

When the cooling-off period expires, the sale begins the settlement phase.

Usually between 28 to 42 days in NSW, this period lets buyer arrange their finances, and lets both parties double check that all aspects of the Contract Sale are fulfilled.

Settlement can be delayed by a range of issues, from the buyer not able to complete their loan documents to the vendor failing to provide vacant possession. To ensure a smooth settlement period, both parties should work closely with their lawyers from start to finish.

On settlement day, the buyer’s lawyer will ensure the money to be used to purchase the property is available, before assisting the buyer in getting the title or freehold to the property.

When the final signature has been affixed and the last cent has exchanged hands, it is finally time to pop the champagne!



5 Home Features that Seldom Add Value When You Sell

A rule of thumb that you should aim to achieve when renovating is to add three dollars back from every dollar you spend.

This three-dollar-for-one rule instantly manifests if the money and time you had invested was worth it. So if you want to add dollars to your home’s final sale price, you need to know which items not to spend your money on.

So, what are the home features that add little or no value to most properties. Here is the answer according to avid investors and renovators.

  1. Swimming pools

You have probably heard this before but it is worth repeating: a swimming pool is a major investment, and it will not give you the return you are hoping for.

You may like this feature, but others may see it as a hassle, danger, or expensive to maintain. If you are in a suburb teeming with young families, you may see them reject perfectly nice homes because of a swimming pool, so if your home already doesn’t have one, don’t build one in hopes of making a good sale.

Swimming pools may look like a good idea, but it is an expensive addition. If you are selling, it can turn off a prospective group of buyers, like families, the elderly, and potentially property investors. A pool will not attract these types of tenants because of maintenance, public liability, insurance and local government regulations relating to fencing and safety barriers.

  1. Excessive fittings and fixtures

With so many renovation shows on TV showing contestants being provided with ridiculous amounts of money for renovations, high-end products of all sorts have been introduced to try to win points.

But while the latest stove may be what your heart desires, with a customised backsplash made of cow hide and gold trims, this may not fit the taste of your buyers. Unless your target buyers belong to the rich, the fixtures and fittings, no matter how expensive and extravagant they are, will not give you a high return on investment.

  1. Things you cannot see

Something you can’t see is not likely to increase your return. This comprises wall and ceiling insulation, double glazing, new air-con systems and stumps.

These things are good to add to your long-term home. But don’t put them in as a selling feature because most people assume they are already installed and are in good working condition. However, it is fine too if they are not there.

Air-conditioners don’t add value to a home for sale. In Australia’s sub-tropical regions, air-conditioning is a must. But, installing a nifty split-system priced at say, $1,000, does not boost the price of your home by $5,000 as many home sellers think. This type of features only boosts a home’s marketability, not the value.

  1. Lavish landscaping or no landscaping

You have to find a balance when it comes to your garden.  A lack of a garden is a major turn off, much like a very fancy garden.

Experts advise a basic makeover is definitely the way to get a return on your outdoors expenses. Some lawn and a simple, easy to maintain garden design should suffice. Don’t go crazy with water features, cladding, secret gardens, paving, etc.

And your rare and/or edible botanicals will not boost your sale price either. You may be able to make delicious marmalade from your fruit trees, but you don’t automatically get money for the jam.

Some sellers believe that trees will be a big seller and add significant value to their property. But unless your property is a working orchard, the average buyer will be lukewarm to a guided tour of fruit trees as they’d rather hear and see the benefits and amenities the property actually offers.

  1. Sub-par DIY work

It’s not so hard to get a false sense of what an average person with a hammer and paint can do. What person wouldn’t get excited at the thought of saving lots of money? But this doesn’t mean homeowners can’t DIY minor cosmetic improvements and do a good job of it.

But it can cost you a lot to do a below-than-average job. Defective tiling and painting is easy to see at open homes. The value of a house decrease with half-finished jobs.

Even if you don’t hire a professional in order to save money, if you don’t have the confidence in doing the job it can end up taking you longer to achieve the desired results. That delay will mean a delay in getting your property to market.

Electricity and plumbing will also require the sign-off sheets from tradespeople for the works completed, so before you start determine what jobs you can do competently.

Things That Turn Off Buyers

There is no right way to sell a house, but there are wrong ways to do it.

All agents have their own way, and each buyer will react uniquely to their sales pitch. But those varied responses don’t give agents a free rein.

Though prospective buyers will all be different, they will be influenced by human nature. This means there is still some type of rulebook when it comes to selling a property.

Buyers will be turned off by dirt, bad odours or clutter. So you have to make an effort to help them visualize themselves living in your home.

Having said that, here are nine things that could possible turn off prospective buyers. Ignore them at your own risk.

  1. Clingy vendors

It cannot be easy letting go of a home where you have spent years making memories. But when you have decided to sell, you need to commit to see the process through.

Allow your agent to do their job, and provide prospective buyers the space they need to get attached. Sellers who hang around during an open home, or entertain prospective buyers with family stories, normally turns off buyers instead of attract them.

Even if you are quite entertaining, don’t forget that selling a home is a business deal. You have to remain as detached and neutral as possible, and let the buyer imagine themselves moving in and living in your home.

  1. Dirt

A property that is not well presented can often break a deal. Buyers will leave if they see dust, dirt and other mess. So get the services of a professional cleaner, a home stager, or both to put your property in order.

Clean the whole house from top to bottom, including those spaces that are not often seen, with special attention on the living areas, backyards, bathrooms and toilets. 

Moreover, do something about evidence of wear and tear. Small maintenance problems might not be a big deal, but buyers may see them as a sign of much bigger, underlying problems.

  1. Smells

There are different opinions about which smells help sell a home. However, most property experts say that the easiest way to a buyer’s heart is a reliable supply of fresh air. That is because buyers have different smell preferences and because there are those who assume sellers are trying to hide a bad smell when they use air freshener heavily.

So instead of trying to look for the right incense or candle, work on getting rid of bad smells instead. Open a lot of windows hours before the open inspection, and avoid cooking as well.

  1. Clutter

There is no reason for a house to be cluttered on open inspection, so you have to do more than a cursory cleaning before you put your home up for sale. Think strategically and systematically when de-cluttering. Begin in areas that will be used by the buyers the most. You may be able to excuse an untidy garage, but you will not find it easy to explain a messy living room.

If you are feeling overwhelmed, hiring a professional organiser is worth considering. A professional will view your mess in an objective manner, launch quick, decisive measures to eliminate your excess, and stow away the rest out of your sight.

  1. Temperature

It is what we call the Goldilocks effect: If a home is too warm or freezing, your buyers will not be happy.

It may not break the deal completely, but buyers will not be pleased if they don’t experience your home at its optimal comfort levels, and will ask pointed questions regarding the heating and cooling system. So, be ready with an air conditioner and heating when needed.

Preferably, you want the temperature at your home between 22 degrees and 26 degrees. Doing this may increase your monthly energy bill slightly, but the amount that you will pay to achieve the optimal temperature for your property will be nothing compared to the amount that you will receive from the purchase price.

  1. No price

Your listing is typically the first time potential buyers will look at your home, so it should contain as many important information as possible to catch their attention.

First, your listing should state the asking price. If they don’t see it, buyers will quickly dismiss your property, and jump to the next one that fulfils their requirements.

Buyers have budget in mind all the time. Pining down a specific dollar figure is not always possible, but not putting at least a price range in your listing will most likely turn off buyers, who may presume the home is beyond their budget (even if the truth is the opposite).

Keep your property in contention by allowing buyers to determine whether they can afford it or not.

  1. No photos

Are you willing to purchase a product without seeing it first?

Photos are the most effective way to encourage a prospective buyer to make an enquiry or take a look at a property. People either have to envision themselves living in your home, or they have to gain a realistic impression of how it will fare as an investment.

Ask your agent for help in creating a series of photos that will showcase your property in the best light. Failing to do this will narrow down your target market significantly.

  1. Personal photographs

Never forget that you are not the person purchasing your home.

The things you like may not be the same for buyers, so you must try to create an empty canvas for prospective buyers to let them envision living in your home. Remove provocative pieces of artwork, paint your home in neutral colours, and store any personal photographs. Moreover, hide any evidence of you and your family’s occupation of the property.

Your property should still look and feel homey, but all notes, documents or certificates that show your identity should be stored away, as they can hinder a buyer’s efforts to connect emotionally to your property.

  1. Your agent

Your agent can make or break a sale by being sloppy or underwhelming with the advertisement description of your home. Make sure to choose an agent who has experience in marketing properties across a wide range of platforms by asking questions and doing a little research.

Compare marketing campaigns of agents in your short list, and find one with a comprehensive knowledge of marketing. Focus your questions on their experience and how they will go about promoting and selling your home. View and study how they promote other listed properties and show up at their open inspections in order to observe how they engage with buyers.

Your chosen agent should be able to design and recommend a good marketing strategy to attract targeted buyers, and should possess the skills needed to turn a promising lead into a sure sale. 

Even the best negotiator is never going to be able to sell your home if they can’t market it and get the buyers to turn up!  

Tips for Buying and Selling at the Same Time

In an ideal world, you should have no problem in selling and buying property simultaneously and you finalise all the paperwork on the same day. However, this doesn’t happen a lot.

What actually happens is that people have to purchase first and sell second, which comes with the risk of paying two mortgages, or sell first and purchase second, which can force the homeowner to sell very quickly, move out just as quick, and accumulate thousands in rent.

However, selling and paying at the same time does and can happen. The key is you have to be proactive to achieve this goal. And you also need to ask Lady Luck to smile upon you.

Here are some tips on how you can buy and sell simultaneously:

1. Evaluate the market

The market situation will not change your objective of buying and selling at the same time, but it will impact how you go about achieving it.

The general recommendation when the market is strong is that buy first and sell second. This will allow you to buy at a lower price and sell at a higher one. During this time, there is also less chances of you failing to sell your property because it is a strong market.

When you purchase first, you can have the time to decide what property you want to purchase. However, if you are unable to sell your home before you can buy a new one, you will be paying two mortgages every month. And if you sell at a lower price, you can end up seriously out of pocket. This is the reason why some agents suggest floating your property off-market first, to assess how much it would sell on a much later date.

But in a downturn, the general recommendation is to sell first and buy second. This eliminates the risk of you paying two mortgages and also minimises the pressure of you accepting a bad offer, and gives you a set budget for your new home. However, you might have to rent while you search for your new home, or hurry your purchase to prevent this from happening.

2.  Lengthen the settlement period

The best way to boost your chances of settling at the same time is by extending the settlement periods. However, this will depend on the other party’s flexibility.

To further explain this, selling first would require you to persuade the buyer to acquiesce to an extended settlement as a condition of the sale. Three or four months should be adequate, as six to eight weeks should be enough time for you to find a new home and six to eight weeks to sign contracts and settle.

However, if you purchase first, your offer would need to be subjected to an extended settlement period, which may not benefit the seller, particularly if they had already purchased a home and have to sell fast.

3. Add “subject to completion of sale” to your offer

If you like to take a little risk, or simply unable to settle the sale and purchase of a property at the same time, add a condition of “subject to completion of sale” to your offer.

This condition in your contract means your offer will only become binding when you have sold your home. Simply put, you are not required to settle on the home you agreed to purchase until you have settled the sale of your new home.

Remember that this needs quite a bit of negotiations to arrange, as it can hinder the seller from purchasing another property.

4. Secure bridging finance

If you purchase first and have difficulty selling your home, you probably need to obtain a bridging loan. Usually interest-only, this is another loan that you obtain in addition to your existing home loan to allow you to pay for two mortgages at the same time.

To qualify for the loan, you usually would require a fair amount of equity in your present home. Because of this, you have to talk to your lender whether you qualify before purchasing a new home.

Compared to regular loans, bridging loans typically have higher interest rates, but you can save this way because the total expense of two moving days and a few months’ rent for your temporary home is often higher than the additional interest you would pay for two home loans.



Etiquette in Open House for Sellers

It is important to remember that buyers have to build an emotional connection with a property to truly consider purchasing it. So sellers should exert all efforts to make the process hassle-free as much as possible.

Some of the things you can do are clean, remove your pets temporarily, and keep personal belongings away. You should also avoid doing certain behaviours.

Check out below for a few open house etiquette for sellers:

Before an open inspection:

Focus on the “three Ps” before the date of the open inspection – price, presentation and attracting the right people.

There are, however, a different set of rules on the day of the open inspection.

      1. Remove animals

There shouldn’t be pets or animals present during an open inspection. Banish them and clean up their mess.

Some people don’t like cats and dogs, and it can turn off those who might have an allergy, enter the house, take a whiff of a dog or cat, and begin sneezing non-stop immediately.

  1. Get rid of your personality in your property

Prospective buyers need to be able to see themselves living in the home for sale, and too much personal belongings can make this difficult.

Experts recommend “de-personalising” the property by doing things such as removing family photos off the mantle and taking down any polarising artwork.

  1. Bring in plants

Many sellers fail to realise the influence of greenery in bringing in warmth and appeal to a home. Experts recommend using floral arrangements, large chic plants, newly planted garden beds to create a fresh and inviting atmosphere to a home.

  1. Keep up appearances

On open inspection, the property should look exactly as advertised in marketing materials. When you’re residing in the home while it is for sale, don’t forget that it must look the way that you would expect a hotel room to look like after the cleaning staff has been through it. The most effective way to attain this look is to hire a cleaning service between open homes.


Things you shouldn’t do at an open home

Here are a few things that sellers should not do during an open house:

  1. Linger in the home or send dispatch spies

Sellers loitering around during an open house or sending in people to spy on prospective buyers is not okay. Agents don’t want sellers when they are showing the property simply because they want buyers to feel like they are in the home on their own terms.

The situation is similar to a retail store assistant following wherever a customer goes. A seller following a buyer around could be a lot worse.

  1. Bother the agent

Sellers should let their agent do their job for the duration of the open house. A huge part of an agent’s job these days is to facilitate open houses to get as many prospective buyers to attend as possible, and sellers should maximise that.

  1. Let junior staff take the lead

Sellers should assert that the lead agent be there during open houses, not the junior staff. There are agencies that let junior agents man the front door, take names and numbers with the tablet. But they are often clueless on the important details, like the land size, the date when the owners purchased the property, or the reasons they are selling.

Conservations of that nature with prospective buyers could make or break a deal, so the lead agent should be present for that.

It may seem like a no-brainer, but if car parking is available, leave the slot for would-be buyers when holding an open house.

A buyer’s open inspection experience in general should comprise of minor things like having parking available and the manner they step inside the home, so it is common sense to simplify all things, to make the experience as pleasant and optimistic as possible.



Reduce Time on the Market by Hiring a Prestige Stylist

A part of the prestige property market that is truly thriving is professional styling for sale, which says that it can cut a maximum of four weeks off a property’s time on a weakening market and boost its price by up to 20%.

In 2018, houses in Newcastle take an average of 273 days before selling and the average time for a unit to sell is 42 days. (

This makes good styling vital in order to cut the time it takes to sell and to increase the sale price.

A lot of sellers are styling their homes now with the help of property stylists. However, you have to pick the right style for your market, your home, your personal taste and what you are aiming for. Property stylists say that for each dollar you invest in styling, the return is $2.

Actual costs

The costs of property styling vary by capital state. Owners in Melbourne and Sydney will usually pay top dollar for property styling. In comparison, property styling services in Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth usually cost 10 to 15% less. 

The actual styling can cost between $4000 to $6000 for a four-bedroom home in Newcastle, but most stylists are happy to leave out some bedrooms or work with you to save a few more dollars.

There is no fixed price for property styling services, regardless of where you live, because property styling is customised based on the homeowner’s individual requirements. What you can do is compare quotes from several local property stylists so you can determine a ballpark figure.

However, it is probably for the best not to think of property styling as a cost, but rather as an investment. Your home is most likely the most valuable asset you own, so you should try to get the highest possible price for it.

Home staging in a tight market

When the market is tight, when people are so busy they are scrambling for time, it is important stylists show prospective buyers the possible ways they can live in a house. In the age of social media, there are lots of content on transforming property, with peopling craving the wow factor one can derive from new tiles, a new room flow or even an interesting painting hanged in an unexpected area. 

Property styling for multi-million dollar homes

For high end properties, such as those in the multi millions, people want all the works. Prospective buyers want an experience in the property, so often agents would arrange a cocktail party or an event to present a home and create added drama. It is customary to go the extra mile for elite homes.

Additionally, an art consultant is hired to handle the hiring and installation of special artworks from galleries for added gloss. Beautiful artworks can make a huge impact, can make your home look stunning, and can always lure people’s eyes away from sights that they might not want people to see.

However, the reality is, there are many people who are unable to imagine how great a house could possibly be, and in a weak market it is even more essential to make them see this.

Where to now

If you are still unsure as to the right style for your buyers, your home, your personal taste and what you are aiming for, then contact Annette Pinkerton of One Agency Pinkerton Properties and get started with some fresh and exciting ideas.

Five Tasks that People Should Not DIY When Preparing their Home for Sale

You have to prepare your home if you are planning to sell it. However, it terms of getting the best price possible, going the DIY route may not always be the ideal choice, even if you can save yourself a lot of money.

It is easy for buyers to notice sloppiness, laziness and poorly made finishes. A shoddy renovation creates a sense that the house has flaws that are being hidden, and buyers may speculate what other things are wrong with the house.

Without achieving a professional result from any hasty repairs you plan to do, the best course maybe to stop immediately and call in the experts.

Contingent on your handyman skills, here are some tasks that you either action or delegate:


  1. Cleaning

Your house should be spotless throughout during open inspections. Kitchens and bathrooms are considered as the most essential spaces to draw in buyers, so these spaces should be paid particular attention. This means a thorough cleaning beneath the sink, behind the loo, and inside the oven plus regular surface cleaning.

What is worse than dirty windows? Streaky windows. Carpets look new and fresh with a steam cleaning rather than just vacuuming.

All interior tasks will require time and effort, but you’re not finished there. You have to also tend to the outside like the paths, eaves and fences.

Professional cleaners can do the job in a fraction of the time it will take you to complete it. They have the training, experience and equipment to complete a task fast and well, including steam cleaners, pressure washers, pole-extended window cleaning devices for hard-to-reach windows, etc.


  1. Painting

The rule of thumb when it comes to painting is: use neutral colours to attract as many buyers as possible. Painting is an easy enough project, right?

However, how many have failed at this ostensibly simple job because they are not quite adept at cutting in to achieve that sharp finish around architraves and crown mouldings? Or worse, attempted to paint over dark walls but after numerous layers you feel like that original colour is still not completely covered?

Many tricks and techniques are used to achieve the perfect paint finish. Painters have the gear, skills and can complete the task fast, and you can guarantee that the result will present the house in the best way possible.

The paint that painters use are bought at a discount, so while you have to pay for the services of the paint, you can save a few dollars on the paint itself.


  1. Gardening

A house can become instantly appealing with indoor-outdoor living, but can become a tangle of weeds and shrubs creating an impression of disrepair and hard work for the new owners.

Outdoor spaces should be made to look as big as possible. While you can slash the bushes and chop some tree limbs, do you have real skills to do it?

Each species of tree and shrub has a distinct way of growing. If they are not pruned right, they could grow spiky branches with no foliage, or a bare lawn that will not regrow in time for the open houses.

Expert gardeners have the know-how to prune plants so that they continue to be healthy and looking beautiful. They can also give advice on how to quickly make over your garden to boost its appeal, like plant in a certain moist dark area or what will survive in a dried-up flower bed in the hot sun.


  1. Electrical and plumbing task

Is there a blockage in the kitchen sink? Are you smelling something weird from the laundry drain? Is a sunken ceiling light flashing irregularly that it is giving you a migraine?

Maybe it is easy enough for you to do some tasks like changing a light bulb or using a drain cleaner. But it is never a good idea to hide plumbing and electrical issues, because a pre-purchase inspection will reveal the problems and buyers will either realise unwelcome future additional costs, or will attempt to use the issues to lower the agreed purchase price of your home.

Plumbing and electrical work must be done by a licensed tradesman, so don’t even think about doing the job yourself.


  1. Styling

We watch amazing home makeovers on the tv and think that we can do the same thing easily.

In real life, it’s not so easy to look at your own house and see “what could be.” DIY styling could involve dragging old furniture out and entirely replacing it indefinitely for show but there are stylists and furniture-hire services that specialise in home staging furniture for a fraction of the cost.

It is the business of home stylists to identify what will attract buyers and they have industry connections where they can source inspiring furniture and accessories to create an appealing look. You can avoid so much of your time and effort by hiring an expert.



Property Sellers are Attracting Buyers Using their Dogs

Using professional photography to highlight the outstanding features of a property for sale has greatly evolved.

Novel and evolving techniques are continually being utilized, from scenic angles of water views to zoomed in snaps of a beautifully designed nook in a big space.

However, one of the most recent techniques that agents and photographers have been changing things up is by including life to the photos – in the form of the beloved family pet.

Dogs, the favorite companion of Australians, popping up in property photos is growing in popularity. And while seeing an adorable photo of a dog has people singing praises for the animal itself, experts think the idea brings more appeal to the sales campaign.

Agents don’t use this technique often but a dog in the pictures does help catch the attention of buyers and draw them to the home.

It creates a welcoming feeling, which is no surprise because plenty of people keep pets nowadays. On average, one in every three buyers has a pet, with a large number being dogs. It also shows buyers that someone loved living in that home.

When buyers see a pup in the pictures, they already know that the property has a dog-friendly yard. Buyers don’t need to ask if the yard suits their pets.

One of the most searched words for rent was “pet-friendly” and it is rising in popularity with owner-occupiers.

For buyers, this feature is as popular as water or ocean views or a courtyard.

Many properties for sale have successfully been sold because of dogs in photos. The properties feel welcoming to buyers and they immediately know that it is a family-orientated home.