What's happening in real estate
What's happening in real estate

Know where to stop with a pre-sale makeover?

Property Brokers  Wednesday, November 17th
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Most properties require a bit of work, but the adage, "Good hat, good feet", rings true, as these aspects make a good house. A pre-sale process will often have you looking at sprucing your property up to encourage the highest possible return.

And, real estate salespeople will tell you that common property issues can jeopardise or impact a sale outright. Yes, even in a market where anything and everything seems to sell!

It can, however, be tricky deciding which issues require repairs and which could do with an upgrade. Big-ticket items could end up using your entire budget, and you could still potentially end up not having a buyer in place after all of that. Avoid this situation at all costs because the chances are good that you won't recoup what you spent at the time of the sale unless, of course, you purchased the property at a bargain price!

The experts agree that there are a few key things to ask yourself before listing your property for sale:

  1. Do you recognise your property's potential, will your buyer? Be sure to look at your property's condition - inside and out. Is it ready to move into, and if it isn't, what could be done to change this?
  2. How do you think your property would be received in terms of first impressions? First impressions count. In real estate, this matters even more. A well-presented property could mean the difference between scrolling past it or putting in an offer.

So, what do you do first, and when do you stop? If everything in the house is 'passable', start with the outside first, then the kitchen, interior living spaces, exterior living spaces, and the bathroom.

Why the exterior over a kitchen or bathroom? If your house exterior isn't appealing, you could stop a potential buyer in their tracks. 

It may be good to consider an update over a full-blown renovation when you think of a kitchen renovation. Prioritise what needs doing so that you can keep track of costs.

Quick wins could see you actioning minor repairs, modernising by updating hardware and light-fittings and adding a lick of paint to freshen things up.

Top tips to help make your property more sellable:

  • Identify your potential buyer before starting - If your buyer is looking for a family home, they could prefer an en-suite over a modern main bathroom or focus more on main living areas rather than bedrooms. They're often more than ok with things not being perfect, as long as there are functional spaces to work with. Not sure who your target buyer is? Talk to one of our real estate salespeople about a free appraisal - as local experts who sell in your area; they have plenty of experience and research to help you streamline your decisions. They will give you an idea of what your buyer will want from the renovation and what your property could sell for.
  • Buyers want plenty of natural light - a lick of white paint, an extra lamp or two, and some large mirrors are easy ways to brighten things up.
  • It's a good idea to fix outdated or malfunctioning water tanks, heat pumps or electrical systems; these will likely turn up during a builder's inspection before the property goes to market.
  • Buyers are understandably wary of leaky homes; they will look for signs of dampness and water damage. It's important to do remedial work before listing your property.
  • A kitchen or bathroom that doesn't fulfil modern-day function requirements can be a deal-breaker. Focusing on low-cost, high-impact projects can achieve a fresh look that needn't be expensive.
  • It's essential to address unconsented work early on as this could immediately reduce the potential buyer pool it affects access to finance. There may be buyers, but their offers may be low-ball.

The best thing to do is to have a look at other homes in your neighbourhood. This will help you to avoid over-improving your property. For example, if none of the other houses in the area have the amenities you're thinking of adding, it is unlikely to result in a significantly higher selling price when you add them.

Our local real estate salespeople can provide you with comparable properties that have sold in your area. This will give you an excellent idea of where you sit in the current market, what you could expect to sell for, and different ways to add value.

A general rule of thumb is that a good return on investment is at least double what the renovation cost.

Book in a FREE property appraisal, and you could WIN $15,000 to spend on adding value inside or outside your property - the choice is yours! Talk to us today, you won't want to miss out on this one!


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Rose Olliver
M  021 064 4294
E  rose.olliver@pb.co.nz

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