Engaging in some light gardening could be the key to selling your house at auction over autumn.
Despite the leaves starting to settle and the weather cooling down, autumn auction action continues, often with vendors looking to capitalise on a sale and settlement prior to, or post the end of the financial year.
Auction momentum has been strong so far this year after a multiple record-breaking year in 2013, with high volumes of home owners hitting the marketplace and choosing to take their property to auction in 2014.
Continued maintenance of your property during the autumn is essential to securing a premium price for your property. From painting to pruning, preparation is essential for a successful auction.
With this in mind, it’s time to jump on the ladder and clean the leaves and debris out of the gutters. Rake up leaves off lawns or common areas of the block and sweep the footpaths, paving and entertaining areas.
You may want to consider giving these a good wash down with a high pressure hose to blast away any summer dust or sand you may have dragged back from the beach.
While you have the hose out it’s a good idea to wash down brick walls, spider webs, roofing and pergolas to make them clean and fresh for buyer inspections.
If you have the time an obvious step to take is weeding the garden beds and adding some fresh mulch, straw and wood chips as this can add to a good first impression.
I recommend continuing to water your gardens and lawns as they tend to look a bit dry and patchy after a hot summer. Sprinkling some fertiliser, top dressing soils or epsom salts on yellow shrubs or plants can give your gardens a new lease of life.
Internally, all the little things make a big difference when it comes to first impressions. Any maintenance like tightening door handles, oiling door hinges and replacing washers should be done prior to commencing your campaign.
They may be harder to find this time of year but fresh flowers are great in the entry, kitchen and dining area – but don’t go overboard and turn your house into a virtual florists.
Baked bread or freshly made coffee always adds a homely feel to the kitchen – you don’t have to go to all of the effort of making bread from scratch, a bake at home pack from your local supermarket will have the desired effect. It may also be a good idea to light some scented candles, personally, I recommend a clean citrus scent to add a fresh, clean feel to your property.
It pays to make sure the home is well lit and curtains, blinds or shutters are all open allowing natural light to flow in on darker days. Using candles, lamps and dimmer lights can create mood lighting although this will be more effective during an evening open for inspection.
As the temperature drops outside, it’s worth keeping the home warm inside so buyers don’t get cool after lengthy days of warm summer weather.
If you have a fireplace, autumn and winter are great times to utilise it – not only will it help to keep your property warm, but a lightly crackling fireplace is sure to create a welcoming ambience.
Personally, there really is nothing better than walking into a clean, well presented home on a cool day with a fireplace ready to warm the mind, body and soul. If you are ever going to capture an emotive buyer like me, this could be the key to their heart.
Someone who buys with their heart will often pay more at auction and getting two or three ‘heart’ buyers to compete at auction is a sure to drive up the price.
If you’re planning on auctioning your property, it’s important that you keep competition in mind, as the more interested bidders at the auction of your property, the higher price you’re likely to achieve.
You’ll likely find that it’s the little things that you do which will be the catalyst to getting more buyers bidding for your property.
I’d also recommend considering your preferred settlement dates as when you’re transacting property this close to the end of the financial year settlement before and after the end of the financial year are both options. This important factor needs to be agreed to before auction day and you’ll need to confirm this with your real estate agent and auctioneer.
For buyers, autumn can be the ideal time to make sure that the property you’re looking at will weather the winter ahead. It’s ideal if you’re able to conduct inspections on a wet or rainy day, as this will allow you to identify properties with leaks, or that are susceptible to other types of water damage.
It’s also wise to remember to take the time to inspect the outdoor areas of a property, as once the sun returns in spring you’ll want to make the most of these. Features such as pools, decks and pergolas should be carefully examined as owners may forget to maintain these over the cooler months.
As always, buyers are required to bring a drivers license or passport to register, and their cheque book, a bank cheque or a deposit bond (if agreed to). If there have been any special terms agreed to such as a change to deposit amount, or the settlement date, you must have given all documentation to the marketing agent prior to the auction.
It is recommended to have a file or folder so you can bring along everything you require for buying or selling at auction.
The My Auctioneer team wishes you all the best with your autumn auction and selling your property!