First impressions count
You really only get one chance to make your first and lasting impression on a potential buyer and persuade them to take an interest in your unit.
Usually that first impression is made through the photographic images that appear in the advertising and marketing material promoting your unit. It’s important to ensure that the images of your unit are as professional looking as possible:
• Capture strong and bold colours – potential buyers are generally attracted to bright and colourful images
• De-clutter your unit by removing large and bulky furniture • Switch on lights and lamps inside the unit to add warmth
• Take photos in good weather and light – bright blue skies and sunshine streaming in the windows are a must A great image starts things off on the right foot
– giving potential buyers a positive attitude from the get-go. As they say, a picture can speak a thousand words.
But before you even get to the point of taking photographs, it’s essential to ensure that your home is well presented.
Presentation is everything
When preparing your unit for sale, presentation is everything!
It’s the little things that count and excellent presentation – inside and outside – can make a huge difference in how your unit is accepted by the buyers.
Here’s how to prepare your unit and turn it into an irresistible and marketable home.
1. Disassociate yourself
Say to yourself “This is not my home. It is an unit – a product to be sold”. Make the mental decision to ‘let go’ of your emotions and focus on the fact that soon the unit will no longer be yours. Picture yourself handing over the key to the new owners. Doing this allows you to take a objective view of your unit and assess what needs to be done in order to present it in the best way.
Pack up those personal photographs and family heirlooms. Buyers want to imagine their own photos on the walls and they can’t do that if yours are there! You want buyers to say “I can see myself living here”.
We all collect an amazing amount of stuff! Make your property look spacious and show off its best features by de-cluttering. Keep in mind that a prospective buyer needs to imagine their belongings in the property.
4. Rearrange bedroom cupboards and kitchen cabinets.
Buyers love to snoop and will open bedroom cupboards and kitchen cabinets. Think of the message it sends if things fall out. Now imagine what a buyer will think if they see everything is organised. It says that you take good care of the rest of the unit as well.
5. Rent a storage unit
Every unit shows better with less furniture. Remove pieces of furniture that block walkways and put them in storage. Leave just enough furniture in each room to showcase the room’s purpose and plenty of room to move around.
6. Remove or replace favourite items
If you are going to take window coverings, builtin appliances or fixtures with you, remove them now. If a buyer never sees it, they won’t want it. Once you tell a buyer they can’t have an item they will covet it – and it could blow the deal.
7. Make minor repairs
Replace cracked floor tiles, repair leaking taps, fix doors that don’t close property and kitchen doors that jam. You don’t want potential buyers to feel that there will be a list of repairs waiting for them the moment they move in.
8. Make the house sparkle
A unit that sparkles always sells for a higher price. Don’t spend a fortune on home improvements that a potential buyer may or may not want. Rather, spend your energy on making the unit sparkle – start scrubbing, then stand back with pride and look at what the buyers will see when they arrive.
Linger in the doorway of every single room and imagine how your unit will look to a potential buyer. Carefully examine how furniture is arranged and move pieces around until it makes sense. Tune into the room’s statement and its emotional pull. Does it have impact?
10. Check curb appeal
If a potential buyer won’t get out of their car because they don’t like the exterior of the building, you’ll never get them inside your unit. You need potential buyers to be sufficiently impressed from the street to stop the car, get out and take a closer look. Remember, many buyers will be busily checking out up to a dozen different properties in one day. Try it yourself – drive up the street and view your building through the buyer’s eyes. Is the lawn mowed? Are the gardens tidy? Are the common areas free from clutter and well maintained? These things count. If a potential buyer is not impressed with the outside of your building, there is little chance they will make the effort to come inside.
Romancing the buyers When preparing your unit for sale, think about your buyers. They don’t just want a home. They are buying a dream – a lifestyle. It’s your job to romance the buyers.
Make your buyers envisage and believe what it would be like to read a book in your sunroom, cook a meal in your kitchen or go to sleep at night in your bedroom.
Help paint a picture in the mind of the buyer to allow them to become emotional about your unit. This is the key to selling your unit. If the buyer loves your unit, your chances of getting a higher price will soar.
Open for inspection Remember that buyers will usually be visiting a number of units on the same day, and yours will be in competition with others on the market at the same time.
So how can you make your unit stand out from the crowd on open day:
• Have some soft music playing to create a relaxed atmosphere
• Add vases of fresh flowers around the unit
• Make sure the beds are made, dishes are washed and toys are stored away
• Freshly brew some coffee to create an inviting aroma
• Open curtains and windows to allow the sunshine in and fresh air to circulate
• Make sure the kitchen is gleaming and smells fresh
Results speak for themselves You never get a second chance to make a first impression! Remember, you are trying to sell your unit to someone else. Your unit must stand out above all the others in the minds of your prospective buyers. Yours musn’t be just another that they tick off their “to see” list.
You must give it your all in displaying your unit. It must clearly override all other units, so that buyers don’t remember it merely by looking at the brochures or viewing it online – but instead have it etched in their minds.
You want them to be talking about your unit long after they leave it.