The Dos and Don’ts

of Preparing your

Home For Sale

When renovating for sale, a little home improvement can go a long way. But how do you know if you’re adding value to get the most out of your investment or potentially wasting money?

The secret lies in knowing where to make a few strategic touch-ups. Ideally, you want to achieve a return of at least three dollars for every one that you invest – so it’s important to understand what does and doesn’t impact the sale price.

At RE/MAX Now, we know what it takes to get results. Every 30 seconds, a RE/MAX Now agent helps someone find their perfect place. A good local agent will help you better understand what buyers are looking for in your specific area, but we’ve found certain advice works well for most sellers.

Click on the markers on the image below to reveal our insights!

dos and donts of preparing your home for sale

Curb to Door Experience

Do: Ensure there is a clear and attractive path from the curb to your front door. This forms the first experiential element when a buyer comes to look at your home, and this first impression can set the tone for the remainder of the viewing. Consider pressure-cleaning concrete driveways and pathways, painting front fences and tidying front entryways. Don’t: Choose design elements that could alienate some buyers. Consider cool neutral tones and clean lines for any decorative features.

Exterior & Gardens

Do: Focus on exterior elements of your house that are visible from the street. When assessing where to spend your renovation budget, prioritise street visible elements such as the front facade and front yard. These items will add to your street appeal more so than your backyard. Don’t: Overspend on external renovations. As a general rule, investing more than 2% of your current property’s value on external updates is unlikely to provide a positive return on investment come sale time.

Bedrooms

Do: Consider fresh paint, new carpet and blinds to make bedrooms feel ready to be lived in. Also ensure you remove additional clutter from bedrooms, and consider installing large mirrors, to give the illusion of more space. Don’t: Spend unnecessarily. Invest a considerably large amount of money on bedroom updates – these rooms often don’t impact sale price as much as high-quality finishes in kitchens and bathrooms.

Bring in Professionals!

Do: Consider investing money on some professional help for more visible work that, if not done properly, could detract from the perceived value of your property – think tiling and painting. If you’re not confident in your skills for these projects, it’s best to get in some outside help. Don’t: Invest money in items such as wall and ceiling insulation, or unseen air conditioning systems. Typically, features that can’t be seen don’t provide return on investment come sales time.

Kitchen

Do: Update your kitchen! As a general rule, investing up to 2% of your current property value is likely to result in a positive return on investment (when done well). Keep refurbishments simple, with clean lines, neutral colour palates (whites and greys), and clever use of space. Don’t: Get caught incorporating too many ‘trendy’ elements. Classic, high quality kitchen elements will prevail!

Open Plan Living

Do: Think about going open plan, If you don’t currently have an open plan home, it’s well worth talking to a builder and real estate agent to assess how much value changing the layout of your home will provide, and whether this is likely to result in a positive return on investment. Don’t: Go too crazy with structural changes! These are some of the more expensive changes to make to your home.

Bathroom

Do: Update your bathroom. Bathrooms are one of the most important features buyers consider when purchasing a home. As a general rule, investing up to 1.5% of your current property value on worthwhile bathroom refurbishments will typically provide a good return on investment. Consider fresh paint, large mirrors to increase the perception of space, and new vanities to breathe new life into your bathroom. Don’t: Go overboard if you’re on a budget! It can be very easy to over-spend on bathroom refurbishments, and the final finish is extremely important. Make sure you plan out your refurbishments to ensure what you’re looking to achieve is within your budget, and can be completed to the standard buyers require.

Living Room

Do: Put on a fresh coat of paint! This can impact the sale price much more than you think. Also consider updating the flooring – replacing carpet with floating floor boards can be an affordable option that buyers love. Don’t: Paint your rooms too brightly! Even if bright colours are to your taste, they can often alienate buyers. Consider sticking to the overall neutral colour tones as recommended for all areas of the house for consistency.

Big Ticket Additions

Do: Focus on your existing features. Instead of adding in large new features, focus on refurbishing existing entertainment areas to ensure they appear well-maintained – as long as it stays within the overall budget for your exterior elements (2% of current property value). Don’t: Add big ticket items like a pool. The high costs of installation, combined with it being a detracting element for some buyers mean it’s not typically a wise investment.

1

Curb to Door Experience

Do: Ensure there is a clear and attractive path from the curb to your front door. This forms the first experiential element when a buyer comes to look at your home, and this first impression can set the tone for the remainder of the viewing. Consider pressure-cleaning concrete driveways and pathways, painting front fences and tidying front entryways. Don’t: Choose design elements that could alienate some buyers. Consider cool neutral tones and clean lines for any decorative features.

2

Exterior & Gardens

Do: Focus on exterior elements of your house that are visible from the street. When assessing where to spend your renovation budget, prioritise street visible elements such as the front facade and front yard. These items will add to your street appeal more so than your backyard. Don’t: Overspend on external renovations. As a general rule, investing more than 2% of your current property’s value on external updates is unlikely to provide a positive return on investment come sale time.

3

Bedrooms

Do: Consider fresh paint, new carpet and blinds to make bedrooms feel ready to be lived in. Also ensure you remove additional clutter from bedrooms, and consider installing large mirrors, to give the illusion of more space. Don’t: Spend unnecessarily. Invest a considerably large amount of money on bedroom updates – these rooms often don’t impact sale price as much as high-quality finishes in kitchens and bathrooms.

4

Bring in Professionals!

Do: Consider investing money on some professional help for more visible work that, if not done properly, could detract from the perceived value of your property – think tiling and painting. If you’re not confident in your skills for these projects, it’s best to get in some outside help. Don’t: Invest money in items such as wall and ceiling insulation, or unseen air conditioning systems. Typically, features that can’t be seen don’t provide return on investment come sales time.

5

Kitchen

Do: Update your kitchen! As a general rule, investing up to 2% of your current property value is likely to result in a positive return on investment (when done well). Keep refurbishments simple, with clean lines, neutral colour palates (whites and greys), and clever use of space. Don’t: Get caught incorporating too many ‘trendy’ elements. Classic, high quality kitchen elements will prevail!

6

Open Plan Living

Do: Think about going open plan, If you don’t currently have an open plan home, it’s well worth talking to a builder and real estate agent to assess how much value changing the layout of your home will provide, and whether this is likely to result in a positive return on investment. Don’t: Go too crazy with structural changes! These are some of the more expensive changes to make to your home.

7

Bathroom

Do: Update your bathroom. Bathrooms are one of the most important features buyers consider when purchasing a home. As a general rule, investing up to 1.5% of your current property value on worthwhile bathroom refurbishments will typically provide a good return on investment. Consider fresh paint, large mirrors to increase the perception of space, and new vanities to breathe new life into your bathroom. Don’t: Go overboard if you’re on a budget! It can be very easy to over-spend on bathroom refurbishments, and the final finish is extremely important. Make sure you plan out your refurbishments to ensure what you’re looking to achieve is within your budget, and can be completed to the standard buyers require.

8

Living Room

Do: Put on a fresh coat of paint! This can impact the sale price much more than you think. Also consider updating the flooring – replacing carpet with floating floor boards can be an affordable option that buyers love. Don’t: Paint your rooms too brightly! Even if bright colours are to your taste, they can often alienate buyers. Consider sticking to the overall neutral colour tones as recommended for all areas of the house for consistency.

9

Big Ticket Additions

Do: Focus on your existing features. Instead of adding in large new features, focus on refurbishing existing entertainment areas to ensure they appear well-maintained – as long as it stays within the overall budget for your exterior elements (2% of current property value). Don’t: Add big ticket items like a pool. The high costs of installation, combined with it being a detracting element for some buyers mean it’s not typically a wise investment.

1. Curb to Door Experience

Do: Ensure there is a clear and attractive path from the curb to your front door. This forms the first experiential element when a buyer comes to look at your home, and this first impression can set the tone for the remainder of the viewing. Consider pressure-cleaning concrete driveways and pathways, painting front fences and tidying front entryways.

Don’t: Choose design elements that could alienate some buyers. Consider cool neutral tones and clean lines for any decorative features.

2. Exterior and Gardens

Do: Focus on exterior elements of your house that are visible from the street. When assessing where to spend your renovation budget, prioritise street visible elements such as the front facade and front yard. These items will add to your street appeal more so than your backyard.

Don’t: Overspend on external renovations. As a general rule, investing more than 2% of your current property’s value on external updates is unlikely to provide a positive return on investment come sale time.

3. Bedrooms

Do: Consider fresh paint, new carpet and blinds to make bedrooms feel ready to be lived in. Also ensure you remove additional clutter from bedrooms, and consider installing large mirrors, to give the illusion of more space.

Don’t: Spend unnecessarily. Invest a considerably large amount of money on bedroom updates – these rooms often don’t impact sale price as much as high-quality finishes in kitchens and bathrooms.

4. Bring in Professionals!

Do: Consider investing money on some professional help for more visible work that, if not done properly, could detract from the perceived value of your property – think tiling and painting. If you’re not confident in your skills for these projects, it’s best to get in some outside help.

Don’t: Invest money in items such as wall and ceiling insulation, or unseen air conditioning systems. Typically, features that can’t be seen don’t provide return on investment come sales time.

5. Kitchen

Do: Update your kitchen! As a general rule, investing up to 2% of your current property value is likely to result in a positive return on investment (when done well). Keep refurbishments simple, with clean lines, neutral colour palates (whites and greys), and clever use of space.

Don’t: Get caught incorporating too many ‘trendy’ elements. Classic, high quality kitchen elements will prevail!

6. Open Plan Living

Do: Think about going open plan, If you don’t currently have an open plan home, it’s well worth talking to a builder and real estate agent to assess how much value changing the layout of your home will provide, and whether this is likely to result in a positive return on investment.

Don’t: Go too crazy with structural changes! These are some of the more expensive changes to make to your home.

7. Bathroom

Do: Update your bathroom. Bathrooms are one of the most important features buyers consider when purchasing a home. As a general rule, investing up to 1.5% of your current property value on worthwhile bathroom refurbishments will typically provide a good return on investment. Consider fresh paint, large mirrors to increase the perception of space, and new vanities to breathe new life into your bathroom.

Don’t: Go overboard if you’re on a budget! It can be very easy to over-spend on bathroom refurbishments, and the final finish is extremely important. Make sure you plan out your refurbishments to ensure what you’re looking to achieve is within your budget, and can be completed to the standard buyers require.

8. Living Room

Do: Put on a fresh coat of paint! This can impact the sale price much more than you think. Also consider updating the flooring – replacing carpet with floating floor boards can be an affordable option that buyers love.

Don’t: Paint your rooms too brightly! Even if bright colours are to your taste, they can often alienate buyers. Consider sticking to the overall neutral colour tones as recommended for all areas of the house for consistency.

9. Big Ticket Additions

Do: Focus on your existing features. Instead of adding in large new features, focus on refurbishing existing entertainment areas to ensure they appear well-maintained – as long as it stays within the overall budget for your exterior elements (2% of current property value).

Don’t: Add big ticket items like a pool. The high costs of installation, combined with it being a detracting element for some buyers mean it’s not typically a wise investment.

Want to know more?

Knowing exactly what to invest into your home pre-sale can be a tricky business, so lean on a local expert to help cut down the work and expense of home improvements prior to a sale.

Let a RE/MAX professional lead you in the right direction to make a positive return on your investment.

Reach out to your local agent today.

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