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Selwyn Times: May 16, 2017

12 Dressing your

12 Dressing your property up for sale Your house is on the market and you hope to get a good price. While market performance will largely influence this, presenting your home at its best will help. First impressions count from the moment potential buyers view a property from the street to the moment they walk through the front door. Weed the garden, cut back unruly shrubs and prune trees where needed. Kill off weeds in the lawn, sprinkle grass seed over bald patches and fertilise the lawn. Indoors, tidy up. Get rid of excess or bulky furniture, toys, books, hobby items or fitness equipment and if too many photos on the wall pack these away so the home looks roomy. If there is a gap or a room needs enhancing, look at what you have. A piece of furniture might be painted up or an old leather bound book popped on the coffee table. Shelves will also add depth to a narrow space while mirrors may give the illusion of a larger space. In entryways, add an easy chair, small table, bookcase or large vase. Awkward spaces such as coved ceilings in attics or upstairs rooms might be converted into storage shelving and the room given a purpose as an office, playroom or extra bedroom so viewers can see how the room might be used. Stow possessions neatly in containers, shelving or tidily in cupboards; highlighting the storage potential within the home, ensuring it is clean and tidy for viewing at any time. Move the pets outside as not all buyers will be pet lovers while some may suffer pet allergies putting them off a house if they see a pet inside. If parts of the house look tired, consider renovating by painting walls, replacing worn carpet, or modernising the kitchen, bathroom and toilet; rooms that should sparkle. Replace tired cabinetry, or the benches and cupboard/drawer fronts then update old toilets, showers or kitchen appliances. Modernising these rooms can lift the final selling price. Use consistent and light paint colours throughout for balance and seamlessness, making the house appear more spacious. An effect that is increased when walls and curtains share the same or a similar colour. Consider the personality and purpose of a room. Bright colours lift living areas especially if large and open. However, bedrooms are suited to calmer softer colours with just a touch of bold. Layer bedding or use throws for effect along with cushions or a stuffed toy in a children’s room. With curtaining, smaller patterns or plain fabrics are the rule for smaller rooms whereas larger patterns make spacious areas cosier. If blinds or drapes are past their best, replace these even if it is only with neutral cotton curtains. The effect will be worth it. Eco-friendly features will also add value for some buyers though not universally, however earthy natural colours and features are popular. Consider who your target buyers are likely to be and what will appeal to them. Move the pets outside as not all buyers will be pet lovers while some may suffer pet allergies

Four things you MUST do before buying a home Buying a home is a big deal. It’s likely to be the most expensive thing you buy, and it can be a complicated legal process. It’s even tougher in a hot market, where there is a lot of competition for a limited number of properties. It might be tempting to take a few shortcuts, but failing to do things properly could cause more problems later. Here are our top four tasks for home buyers. 1. Research the property The real estate agent selling the property acts on behalf of the seller, however they are also required to tell you everything they know about the property. They must respond professionally to all your enquiries and not withhold any details. Remember that you still need to do your own due diligence. That means getting a title search so you can find out all the facts about the property’s ownership, boundary and access, as held by Land Information New Zealand (LINZ). It’s a good idea to get a Land Information Memorandum (LIM), which shows information held by the local council about the property and land. For valuable feedback on the property’s condition, get a report done by an inspector who has professional indemnity insurance and carries out their work in accordance with the New Zealand Property Inspection Standard. Although this all costs money, it will save you more in the long term. Sellers may occasionally provide some of this information for you. If this happens, check that it is up-to-date. 2. Get legal advice Buying property is expensive, and it can cost even more if something goes wrong. That’s why it’s important to get legal advice before you sign anything. A lawyer will handle all the paperwork involved in the process, including the title search, and offer impartial advice. If you don’t have a lawyer, the New Zealand Law Society can help you find one at propertylawyers.org. nz. 3. Understand the sale process There are several methods of buying and selling property, for example, tender or auction. It’s important to understand the process for the property you are buying. Practices can vary between agencies so make sure you confirm details with them. The Home Buyer’s Guide at buyingahome. reaa.govt.nz has more helpful advice. 13 4. Read the sale and purchase agreement and understand what it means The sale and purchase agreement is your contract with the seller. It is crucial to read it very carefully and get legal advice before you sign. You can negotiate the terms and conditions of an agreement, but once you sign it, there’s no going back. Want more free and independent advice on buying a property? Check out the Home Buyers’ Guide at buyingahome. reaa.govt.nz. If you still have questions, call the Real Estate Agents Authority (REAA) on 0800 367 7322 (please call 04 471 8930 from a mobile phone). New Stage Now Open Home sites from 480m 2 - 705m 2 Priced from $175,000 First National Real Estate Sue Mullins Barry O’Neill 021 244 1325 021 364 422 Visit Us Onsite Cnr Birches Rd & Craig Thompson Dr, Lincoln, 7 days Noon - 4pm Progressive www.flemington.co.nz