Articles - Home Maintenance

Should you renovate before you sell your home?

9th July 2019

So you're about to put your home on the market. Naturally, you want to get the best possible price for your home. But, before you start home renovations its best to think about how it will affect the sale price. Not all upgrades will add value to your home so you'll want to ensure you are getting a return on your investment. 

Before you waste your time and money, we've put together some tips to help you decide whether or not you should renovate your home prior to sale. 

Minimum home maintenance required before putting it on the market 

Any good real estate agent will tell you the importance of having a well-presented property. Even if you are not prepared to do a major renovation on your home, it will still be in your best interest to do some essential home maintenance. Here are some straightforward jobs you can do to improve property value and in some cases, even reduce time on the market:

  • Clean, clean, clean! - you want your home to sparkle 
  • Touch up any chips with a fresh coat of paint 
  • Remove or store any clutter
  • Fix any obvious detrimental defects 
  • Tidy the garden 
  • First impressions matter! Ensure you have the best street appeal possible - sweep paths, ensure your gate is working,  your street number is visible, etc.

Treat it as a business decision 

Whether you are renovating your family home or investment property, you should always look at it as a business decision. The bottom line is - will these renovations add value to your property immediately and will you be able to sell the property for more? 

You are not renovating so you can enjoy the result you are purely doing it to attract potential buyers and add value.  So don't renovate with personal taste in mind. Try to go with a neutral colour palette and style that will appeal to a majority of people.  

Don't overcapitalise 

Make sure you research what your home is worth and the price range of renovated homes in the area. It can be very easy to overcapitalise, which means to improve a property beyond its resale value so you are not able to recoup the money when you sell. You need to your research carefully before renovating to sell. 

What do buyers what? 

Make sure you look at what buyers want, you aren't renovating for yourself, and some renovating may put buyers off. If you are unsure about what buyers are looking for in your area get some advice from your local real estate agent, they may not be renovating experts, but they will defiantly have insider knowledge on what features attract buyers in your area. 

How much should you spend?

Once you've established how much your home is worth and what buying audience would value, you can determine how much you want to spend on your renovations. If you think it won't be worthwhile to renovate, don't! Sell your home on its potential instead. 

To give you a rough guide, if you are doing cosmetic renovations like painting, floor sanding, replacing carpet or landscaping and are looking to sell your home shortly allow for 10% of your property value for your renovation budget. For example, if your home is valued at $600,000 a reasonable budget to work with is $60,000*

Before you start

Before you get carried away, think about small changes you can make that will have a significant effect. You may not be able to justify the cost of a new kitchen but modernising the tapware or repainting dated cabinets could add substantial value to your home. When renovating an older home, be sure to highlight the beautiful details seen throughout, such as fireplaces, mouldings, stained glass and original flooring.

Finishing Touches 

There is no point going to all that hard work if you're not going to add in some final touches. Potential buyers like to imagine themselves living in your house as they are walking through so ensure the house is clutter free and any personal items are removed or stored away. If you are feeling up to it, you can even make the home more inviting by adding some fresh flowers. 

There is defiantly value in renovating before you sell, just make sure you plan and try to appeal to a board market. Good luck and happy renovating!