Six top home seller’s tips for 2020

by Urbane Property

Making a few small, easy to manage tweaks to your home before you sell can have a big impact upon the price you get.

In introducing your home to potential buyers you want it to be as presentable as possible – you need to sell the lifestyle dream as well as you can. You want to give interested parties the best chance to imagine themselves enjoying their prospective new home and making the most of their new lifestyle.

A few minor and inexpensive upgrades to your home can enhance its ability to make that emotional connection with buyers. Of course, the more buyers that feel that connection the more it will drive up the price.

There are several questions most sellers, or vendors, ask during agent appraisals or when they have chosen an agent to sell their home. These include:

  • Should I style?
  • Should I paint?
  • Should I move out?
  • What should I throw out?
  • What don’t buyers want to see?

The approach vendors take to these issues can avoid, or even help to create, a series of mistakes you can make when selling your home.

By most estimates, the right presentation can lift the value of your home by 10 per cent. The wrong approach could have the opposite effect.

Here’s how you can maximise the selling potential of your home.



To create the strongest competition between buyers you need to sell the lifestyle dream of a possible new home to as many people as you can.

Key to that is sparking the imaginations of interested parties. They are looking to create a new home for themselves, a new lifestyle, so provide them with an area in which they can use their imagination. Sell them that dream. Enable them to see themselves and their loved ones living in the home, living the style of life they want.

Opening up the house to their way of living is the perfect way to do this.

Creating space is key to inspiring buyer’s imaginations.

“The key to doing that is to create as much space as possible – to declutter,” says Urbane sales agent Charles Bailey.

“You want to be minimalist without being silly. This is one of the biggest challenges for vendors. This gives buyers the best possible idea of how it could look for them.”

“You can create space by getting rid of what is cluttering up the home but also through the use of well placed mirrors. It helps to show off the space as well as you can.”

This might include throwing out some articles or putting them into storage.



Styling can be a simple, affordable and versatile approach to improve the look of a property – to give it a clean, fresh look. The appearance of a property should make it ready to inspire and ready to be remolded into whatever the new buyer wants to make it.

“We provide an in-house stylist in order to maximise what we can get out of the property,” Mr Bailey says.

“A few small changes can make all the difference. It can be hard for vendors to see something in their own home, a place they love and have a sentimental attachment to which might put buyers off. So it’s good to have an independent party cast their eye over the home.”

That styling can include the vendor’s own furniture, rented furniture or inexpensive sets bought from outlets like IKEA.

The right styling can make all the difference.

“The styling of the home should include the outdoor space, have some chairs on the patio or balcony so prospective buyers can see themselves enjoying their time there,” Mr Bailey said.

“It’s important to style the garden too, if that is through landscaping or a general tidy up. Make it appealing but make sure it is in keeping with the rest of the property.”

According to Mr Bailey, It’s also important to ensure the front of the building is well presented.

“It is the first impression that buyers will get, so it needs to be a good one,” he said.

“Overgrown plants and weeds are not a good look. If it looks well maintained that’s a big plus. But if it isn’t buyers may begin to wonder what else is wrong.”

You don’t need to move out of your home to make it as presentable as possible, but you do need to ensure it is perfect for each open home.



Buyer’s agent Leon Jacques of Cohen Handler says darkness and smells are two major issues that can put his clients off a potential new home.

“These days people want natural light and that can sometimes be hard in some of the older buildings,” he says.

“So brighten up your home as much as possible. No dark carpets. No dark walls. Show off the space as best as you can.”

And get rid of those smells you might have become accustomed to, that might not even bother you, but could put buyers off.

Not everybody loves your dog as much as you do.

“Owners can’t smell their own pets,” Mr Jacques says. “But potential buyers certainly can.

“They don’t want to be hit with wet dog smell when they think they might have found their dream home. They don’t want that damp smell either. They want to see that the carpets have been cleaned. They want to see that the place has been looked after. They don’t want any nasty little surprises.”

If stubborn smells persist, burning scented candles during your open home is a way to cover them.



If the walls are looking tired or old, painting them is a great way to freshen and brighten them up. Patching over cracks does likewise, as does dealing with water stains. As always, it’s best to be guided by your agent or stylist.

Do it yourself if you can or if it is a bigger job, hire a tradie. Your agent should be able to help you here.

“It’s important to sell buyers the finished product,” Mr Bailey says.

“Many buyers want to be able to move in straight away and not have to worry about anything. This is especially the case for first home buyers. You want to make it as easy as possible for them. They are nervous buyers and things like cracking puts the fear of God in them. They want a place that is move-in ready.”

Many buyers are influenced by popular TV shows such as The Block, so alternatively you are giving them the chance to be a ‘contestant’ and give them the opportunity to see how they could turn their new home into a masterpiece.



Inadvertently vendors can affect the sellability of their home by their presence at open for inspections.

“Some owners tend to want to hang around during an open,” Mr Jacques says.

“But that’s never a good idea. Owners tend to want to talk a lot and tell you all about a property and it’s not always the good stuff.”

Chances are you won’t sell your home as well as your agent can.


It can also be useful to depersonalise your property.

To put away our personal effects such as family photos. With them there prospective buyers might have trouble seeing themselves in the property because it’s your home. Without that personal touch it can be easier for buyers to imagine themselves in that space and begin creating a lifestyle for themselves in the home.


If you are thinking of selling your home and would like to get a better idea of what it involves contact Urbane today.

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