RENOVATE TO SELL

Minor repairs

If there is any unfinished work inside the property – such as skirting boards that have been removed – fix these things. If there are any obvious minor repairs – such as door handles missing or broken hooks – fix these too. Repair all irritating things that are likely to catch the eyes of buyers. Be very careful if you do any painting. Painting one dull room can suddenly make other unpainted rooms look dull too. Before you know it you have a major painting job on your hands; this could lead to replacing the carpets, even the tiles in the bathroom. Suddenly you are involved in a very expensive renovation. The cleanliness and the mood are most important but all expense needs careful consideration. Will you get the money back? Ask your agent’s opinion. The best advice is to do all you can to make your property feel like a home. Make it sparkle without making it too immaculate or clinical. Some sellers create a show home. In doing so, they create a cold sterile effect. Homes with warmth are the most attractive and appealing.

The value of major improvements

If you spend enough money in making the property more attractive, you will usually make it easier to find a buyer. But you need to find middle ground. It makes no sense if the cost of the improvements is too high – often it would be more cost effective to reduce your asking price. Most major improvements are personal and do not add the value you expect. An example is a swimming pool. If you pay $30,000 for a pool, the pool salesperson may tell you this increases the value of your property. But if the buyers don’t want a pool you will not get back what you paid.

Most improvements often return only half their cost upon sale.

You may have to wait years to find a buyer with the same personal taste as you. If your property needs major renovation, it may be better to avoid the expense of renovation and instead select a lower asking price. Many buyers want to renovate a property to suit their own taste. While minor improvements can give you a great return on your selling price, major improvements are often a big mistake.