A little change can make a huge difference

May 5, 2012 10.40 am by. Lyndell

Reading about the sales numbers in April may make some vendors a little dis-heartened, but don’t be. Perhaps your house has now being for sale for over six months, and your first month’s enthusiasm may have wained some-what. The hardest thing now is to pick up that energy and get back to being 100% active. You can re-invigorate yourself with perhaps the help of a good friend…

Stand out-side your home with a friend who has not seen your house for some  time. Have a note pad and quickly jot down yours and their first impressions and thoughts in the first two to three minutes. Try not to censor your thoughts or get defensive, be open to criticism. The aim is to sell your house. What you may have not noticed over the past months, ie, weeds, cobwebs, dead plants, gutters filled with leaves, your friend will. And so will the prospective buyers. Make your house look fresh and inviting. Plant some bright and cheerfulls at the front door, (you most likely did this when you first listed the property and then let it go) and especially take away any debris along the path to your front door. First impressions count. According to Malcom Gladwell, Blink: The Power of Thinking without Thinking, we make up our minds in the first two minutes. And often quicker than two minutes. You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression.

It is important that the prospective buyer pulls up at your house and thinks, wow! Regardless, if, when inside and looking further, the property does not suit them, they could talk to other friends and collegues favourably about your house.

Then walk through the front door, what is the initial impression? Front hall now becoming cluttered? Shoes, coats, scraps of paper and old bills on the hall table? Remove all clutter, put a lush indoor plant at the entrance, a mirror in the hall way, some fresh cut flowers.

Hide your personal belonging, especially in the bathroom. People want to feel the house is warm and inviting, but don’t neccessarily need to know your personal details. Same goes with the photos of the family, the dog, the wedding, the last back yard bbq. In the kitchen, clean the oven again, (yes, you did that too in the first month of the selling campaign), hide cleaning products, detergent, the old dish brush, your collection of vintage tins, the dead plant on the kitchen window sill, and polish the sink. Walk through the bedrooms, especially the master bedroom, have a ‘first impression’ of the feel of the room. Warm and relaxing? Remove photos from the bedside tables, old slippers under the bed, perhaps invest in a new doona cover and scatter cushions.

If things have ground to stand-still, and the agent has stopped ringing and people have stopped inspecting your property, this is the time to take action. When it feels too hard to do so, do it. And, why not bring the agent back to take some fresh photos? They want to sell your property as much as you do.