Check out any list of things to do to maximise the value of your house when you sell it, and making sure it’s clean and smart is right up there. Australian real estate website Domain lists ten tips for selling your house, and no fewer than half of these reasons involve making sure your house is clean!
Leaving aside tips to do with choosing agents and negotiation tips, the first major cleaning related tip is ‘early spring clean’. Clutter and dirt stops possible buyers from seeing your house in its best light, and many houses simply have too much furniture in them. Better to have a minimalist style on show in your house (even if it isn’t normally your bag) than look as if you’ll be appearing soon on one of those TV shows about compulsive hoarders. Consultants who are called in to help high end properties sell often ship all the owners furniture out and bring in their own ‘quality’ pieces. You probably don’t have to go that far, but the principle remains the same.
What is left once you have done the de-clutter, must be sparkling clean. Of course the carpets need to be pristine, but don’t forget the cobwebs in the corners, the taps in the kitchen and bathroom and any blinds and ceiling fans (there’s a handy checklist of all of this we’ve put together for tenants moving out here – it’s essentially the same list).
The second cleaning related tip is ‘create street appeal’. At Elite we can’t really help you here, but the idea is to make sure the building looks good from the street, which may involve a high pressure hose.
Thirdly the author suggests fixing all of those little problems, including any evidence of damp and moisture. Once you have been able to locate the source of the damp and moisture, it might be worth checking our article on dealing with water damage.
Finally, the writer advises you get rid of pet smells, which can be a big no no for buyers.
“You might love your pets, but the buyer who loves your house but is not a pet person will be put off.” says Reece Hunter, Elite franchisee for Ipswich and Toowoomba. “Again cleaning is what’s required, and it might be worth reading the Elite article on removing pet smells on our website for some tips.”
And the last piece of advice involving cleaning, or at least recording the way the house looks once you’ve done it, is… get some good photographs.
You just never know when it’s going to look that good again. And if you do sell your house for thousands more than you thought you’d get, you’ll have a good memento of what the house could look like, even if it only looked that way for ten minutes…