We spend lots of time around here thinking about the advantage styling can give your house when you list it for sale. From listing photos to the first inspection by buyers, you can never underestimate the importance of getting everything right. The exterior of your home also needs a little TLC if you’re going to sell your property for the best price possible. With spring at our doorstep, now is the ideal time to take a good, long look at what your buyer will see when he or she views your house for the first time.

Buyers today are holding all the cards. There are more properties on the Sydney housing market this year – that means that buyers have loads of possibilities to consider. Plus, they have all the time they need to make a decision. Your goal is to make them fall in love with your place instantly. You’re hoping for love at first sight. The all-important first impression is the key to winning the hearts and minds of potential buyers. It is a first date, after all, and you are right to want it to be unforgettable.

Long before your buyers are parking on your street to view your house in person, they will be viewing your listing photos online. In the real world of home-buying, listing photos wink and smile at the buyers sometimes for weeks before they actually call a selling agent. Those photos need to give a certain impression – here are a few ideas about how to cultivate that little flirtation.

  • Trees and shrubbery should be well trimmed and looking healthy. If you’ve got a dying bush, pull it up and replace it. You wouldn’t wear a torn dress on a first date or a shirt with an ugly grease stain across the front.
  • The local plant nurseries are brimming over with colourful blooms this time of year, so pick up a few and plant them to brighten up your street appeal. You don’t need to fill the front garden with high-maintenance plants, just get a little colour going on.
  • Make sure the lawn is edged and trimmed to perfection and keep it that way throughout the listing period. If there are pet stains or dying spots, invest in some sod for an instant fix.
  • Make sure the cobwebs, bird nests, and other debris and dust have been washed away thoroughly. A good sweeping, hosing, or pressure washing gives your house a bright shining face and makes the paint colours stand out better. Pay special attention to shutters and other details that catch and trap leaves and other airborne litter.
  • Speaking of paint colours. Is the exterior paint in good shape? Paint is the least expensive element in staging a house for sale. Don’t miss this opportunity to get the full advantage styling can give you. Buyers want the place to be at the top of the heap maintenance-wise, so if it needs a fresh coat, by all means do it.
    • Don’t neglect the shutters and trim. These details are the accessories that make your house stand out.
    • Give the front door a new coat of paint that complements but doesn’t blend in with the trim. Think red, black, blue, or natural wood stain for this. It will set your buyers up for the wonders you have waiting for them inside.
    • Also, you can consider stain or paint for the front porch to emphasise this popular feature. Again – make it look like it belongs with the rest of your exterior colour scheme.
  • Invest in bold new house numbers and install them where they can be easily seen from the street. Make them prominent – we’re fond of the oversized ones that make it impossible for buyers to miss the house.
  • Get rid of stains on your driveway or sidewalks. There are heavy duty products that can make even a huge oil stain disappear with just a bit of effort. The condition of your concrete matters.
  • Clean up your mailbox – paint it or replace it if it’s looking dull and past its prime.
  • Make sure the doorbell works, the lighting fixtures are squeaky clean, and the door doesn’t rub, scrape or squeak when you open it. (Do this for every door in your house, by the way.)

Creating a good first impression is worthy of the extra work and effort we suggest here. Take the time to evaluate and fix any first impression faux pas if you want to use the advantage styling can give you in this hectic home marketplace.

Photo credit: Image courtesy of Abodian Signs.

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