A property’s condition and price remains key for sellers

Sellers need to present their homes better if they would like to sell within a reasonable amount of time, and for the price they want to achieve. This is according to Charles Haigh, Broker/Owner of RE/MAX Elite, which operates in the Southern Suburbs area of Plumstead and surrounds.

Haigh says that sellers have an important part to play in maximising their chances of obtaining the asking price that they want. He notes that the correct pricing and presentation are essential elements that the seller needs to maximise in order to ensure a successful sale.

“Over-pricing of property remains a challenge that could negatively impact a seller’s chance of attracting buyers to their home,” he says. “It is important for sellers to look at their property objectively. Often when a homeowner has lived in their house for some time and has an emotional attachment to their home, it is easy for them to overlook certain faults and over-estimate the value of their property. If possible, a seller will need to view their home as objectively as possible, as if they were the buyer.”

Adrian Goslett, CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa, notes that after correct-pricing, a home’s aesthetic appeal is the next most important aspect to attracting buyers. “First impressions are vitally important and curb-appeal plays a major role for those who are looking to attract buyers. The pavement outside the property and the garden should be well-maintained, the grass should be cut and flower beds weeded, the pool should be clean and the water crystal clear.”

Sellers can also enhance their chances of a successful sale by applying the principle of less is more. “This means packing away any unnecessary items. We find that homes often have too much of everything - from ornaments, down to furniture. Sellers should also ensure their homes are spotless from the windows, to the patios and the carpets,” says Haigh.

Looking specifically at the areas of Bergvliet and Meadowridge, Haigh says that property here sells in around 30 days or even less, provided that it is in a good, well-maintained condition and selling for the right price. He says sellers in these areas mainly sell due to death, divorce or because they want to downscale their property.

“Considering these areas are popular with families, the bedrooms are more often than not the most important rooms in the house to the majority of buyers. Usually homes that have three bedrooms and a study are the most sought-after in Bergvliet and Meadowridge, however a home with four bedrooms will be more in favour than one with three.

His advice to sellers is to ensure that they are offering the best value in the area. This, he says, means that they need to consider what the other homes in their immediate area are selling for and what features they offer for the price. Then sellers need to find out what those other homes actually sold for as there is more often than not a variance between the asking price and selling price of any given property.

While the seller can do many things to ensure a successful sale, it is also important to select the right agent to market the property. Haigh says there are two important things sellers should bear in mind when choosing an estate agent: the track record of what they have sold in the area over the past year or longer as well as their personality as the seller and agent need to be able to interact and communicate with each other effectively.

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