Getting Property Ready


As Conveyancer’s we mainly deal with the legal documentation involved in a sale or purchase and not what is actually involved directly in the process or getting a property for sale.  So we have asked Sally Luke from Luke and Associates Real Estate to give you her valuable tips gained from her years of selling houses here on this Blog.

We think that after reading this blog and taking some action you will genuinely  achieve the best price possible for your property.


Firstly – disassociate yourself emotionally from the property. You have made the decision to sell and soon it will no longer be your ‘home’  but it can easily become something that will assist you to obtain your next new home, therefore you now want to  attain the highest price possible. You will probably have to put in some hard work and effort before you go to market whether you sell or go to Auction. If you are lucky it might simply mean a good clean and a small declutter.  However, as is perfectly normal in a family loved and lived in home as opposed to a show home it might mean some painting and changing the property around a fair bit.

We have spoken to some companies that dress homes for sale and they say the most common comment is sellers saying they want to buy their own house back again so it IS worth the extra time and effort!

You will need to start looking at the house from a buyers perspective…


The questions’ you should look at asking yourself are:

  1. If I pulled up at the curb what are my first impressions?  Would I think WOW – I want to go inside that house ?? or would I just drive straight past ……. ask for your friends or families opinions !
  2. What are buyers coming to the area wanting?  Start looking on to see what has been selling in the area and how they are prepared for sale – see what makes you think yes and what makes you think ‘No Way”  and, if you can maybe go to some homes for sale in the area for ideas?
  3. Would a tenant want to live here if is was to be rented?

From answering these 3 questions you will be able to start to put together a to do list.


These are the top tips to getting your property ready:

  • First things first –  does the house look well maintained from the street?  Buyers might just turn away if the garden is untidy or the house looks in poor repair.  Remember first impressions count so make sure your Garden/Yard is in tip top shape.  Tidy up the outside, mow the lawns, weed the garden and remove any dead plants. You could add some pot plants or splashes of colour and  sweep all the pathways and drive ways. One tip is to get a really nice “Welcome” front door mat !
  • It’s also time to pack away those personal knick-knacks and mementos (good time for a clear out!) Removing personal belongings such as family photos in the hallway or your children’s artwork on the fridge is a smart move. Most buyers want to be able to envision themselves living in the home as their home, you want them planning where to put their pictures and knick-knacks!
  • Clean the entire home – making sure to eliminate the house of any odours, as we are all busy it might be worth getting a professional cleaner in near the time of the opens or inspections!
  • Work through each room and make sure that marks are cleaned off the walls, remove posters, repair and replace any broken globes and remember clean everything in sight – tiles, floors, kitchens, bathrooms, carpets, windows and even the fridge…..  These will all make a good impression to any potential buyers (people will open fridges and cupboards whilst inspecting!)
  • You could also consider temporary storage of furniture at somewhere like Space Station Storage.
  • Stage the Property For Sale – styling companies know the way to make it sparkle for buyers! There are many companies that do this and they will normally come to your house and talk to you and supply a free quote. It may be well worth the cost and it should get you a better sale price at that!
  • Make your home Neutral – that painting or decorative throw  you love might not be someone else’s taste  – and let in as much light as possible. These steps will make your house  appeal to as many prospective buyers as possible
  • At the opens or viewings you can strategically place some beautiful coloured fresh flowers and don’t hesitate to light a candle or two….
  • Do any of the necessary repairs – start to look at the property from a buyer’s perspective – also check in with your agent if it’s worthwhile painting and/or putting in new flooring. In some cases it might not affect the end sale price but you want to get the best price so remember not to waste your money.  Lots of new home owners will put their own touches on a house once they move in !
  • Choose an agent to sell your property. It is best to talk to a few, see who sells property in your area and ask for recommendations from anyone you know.  Then choose one that you are comfortable with and one who believes that you can sell for a price that is realistic and achievable.
  • Photography – Remember that almost all buyers will have looked at your property on line prior to viewing and may  discount your property  if the photos aren’t good enough. Make sure your agent has a great professional photographer and ask to have a look at examples of their previous work and see if it matches the style of your home .  Make sure the photos are not too deceptive as you do not want to alienate your prospective buyers when they see that your 20 metre front yard is actually only 5 !
  • Conveyancer – speak with your conveyancer to know what’s required from you prior to even contacting an agent. They can liaise with the real estate agent to have searches and documentation prepared for when a contract is ready to be signed. Your Conveyancer can discuss what is required if there are any easements or encumbrances on the land so that there are no hidden surprises. It is also important to be ready to discharge any mortgage over the property. This is often a not so simple process as the mortgage could be over multiple properties and you may wish to only discharge the one you are selling. Knowing these items in advance will make all the difference to a streamlined process.
  • Lastly, relax – if you have followed all the steps above you will now have your home in the best condition and you will be ready to go to market !

The team at McKay Business Services are all members of the AICSA and are proud Adelaide conveyancers .