• Choosing a real estate agent
• How to advertise
• Which areas to spruce up
• Emphasising the unique character of your property
South Africans are spoilt for choice when it comes to variety and availability of the housing market. This is great for the buyer, but for sellers it can become tricky to make your home stand out from the rest in a crowded market and still achieve the price you’re after.
In this article we explore some of the ways you can sell your house quicker with a few easy to follow steps, and ensure that you still do it at a profit.
1. Make sure the price is right
At the end of the day, price is still the most important consideration for buyers. Markets are constantly changing, and many private seller will simply set their heart on a set price without taking the complicated market factors into consideration.
Ideally, you should get your property valued by an independent appraiser – or better yet, a few different appraisers. By getting multiple valuations from different appraisers, who will base their valuations on factors such as market conditions, condition of the property and the value of other properties in the area, you will have a clearer picture of a realistic selling price.
2. Use a professional, experienced real estate agent
The right agent can make a huge difference to selling your home faster and getting the price you’re after. Not only will an experienced real estate agent have access to additional marketing tools and training to help get the deal done, but they also have a list of potential buyers to connect with.
3. Advertise online
The internet offers a number of reputable property sites and advertising your property on them is relatively cost-effective when compared to traditional print advertising. In addition, it provides a great way to track the attention your property is getting, and making the necessary adjustments based on that information.
By using the analytics on offer by these sites, you’ll quickly know if your advertisement is getting clicks, or simply being ignored by potential buyers. This information can guide you in changing the price or wording of your advertisement.
Creating a great advertisement however, starts with…
4. Good photography
Selling your home quickly is all about helping potential buyers to visualise themselves living and making memories in the space. Too often, sellers or inexperienced agents will quickly snap a few mobile phone pictures of rooms that are cluttered, badly lit or non-descript.
You don’t have to hire a professional photographer (although that might very well be worth the investment!) but it will pay off in the long run to put some thought into the photographs you take of your home.
Remember that first impressions last, and if the visual representations of your home don’t grab a buyer’s attention immediately, you might well lose them right from the start.
Tidy up rooms and put away clutter to show off the spaciousness of rooms. Take your photographs at day with wide-open curtains to let in lots of natural bright light. Use photography to show-off the best features of your house.
5. Video tours
Ever noticed that more and more advertisements on social media and online is now done in video format? That’s because video is a powerful medium that adds personality and a certain realism to advertising.
By creating a video tour of your house, you can help potential buyers to place themselves in the space and show them what it’s really like inside your home before they’ve ever set foot in it. Links to your video tour could be included in your advertisement.
6. Emphasise the uniqueness of your house
These days, most South Africans are looking to buy inside secure complexes and established neighbourhoods. While this offers its own selling points, it does mean that you’re also competing against many other similarly priced and styled properties.
You have to find a way to make your property stand out in comparison to all the other houses up for sale in your area. Focus on something special about your house that will make it memorable for potential buyers.
If your property offers something that others don’t like a pool, a home office or a great braai area, then advertise this different and make sure potential buyers know that your house has a certain feature that others are missing.
7. Focus on the front
Choosing a home is as much an emotional decision as it is a rational one. From the moment a potential buyer drives up to your house, they will start assessing whether or not they can see themselves living and building memories in the space. You need to help them visualise this from the onset.
Pay special attention to the front façade of your home. Trim the hedges, put in some extra effort with the fencing and front garden and add a coat of paint to create a killer first impression. Once the front is in tip-top shape, shift your attention to the back.
South Africans are outdoor people – and in a competitive market a great garden or outdoor area is often a deciding factor. If you don’t have the time, skill or energy to spruce up your outdoors, get professional help – it will be money well spent when the sale goes through.
8. Clean up inside
Buyers are nosey… and rightly so. They are after all about to commit to a long-term loan.
The last thing they want to be faced with is dirty kitchen cupboards and carpets. Remember: they are trying to imagine themselves living in your property. Make sure every room sparkles when potential buyers visit.
An important part of presenting a “cleaner” home is also decluttering. While clutter isn’t necessarily dirty, it does give off an untidy impression and takes away from the real features of your home. Store away any unnecessary stuff standing around so that buyers can focus on what you’re really trying to show them.
9. Keep it neutral
Adding a fresh coat of paint is a great way of breathing new life into a property. Keep it neutral though, don’t go for bold colours or try and stamp your personality. You’re trying to create a blank canvas in which a potential buyer can visualise themselves adding their own flair. Once they can start visualising themselves adding their own unique touches to your home, you’ve got them hooked!
In addition to these great tips, always make sure you focus on the small details, which could end up being deciding factors in the end. Look for small blemishes and repair them in order to focus attention on the property itself. Make sure your home smells great when potential buyers visit. Add a touch of class by putting out fresh flowers. There are a myriad of small touches you can add to make your home desirable – let your creativity guide you and before you know it, you’ll be able to close the deal and move into a new home of your own.
Now that you’re old property is sold and you’re ready to move into your new space, make sure you’re adequately covered against any event with Old Mutual iWYZE Homeowners Insurance and Home Contents Insurance. It’s affordable, reliable and packed with value-added extras to protect your investment and most prized possessions – get a quote now.