Agent’s top tips to getting open home ready

Written by in Selling on October 10, 2014

Are you looking to sell? As an agent, it is my role is to give my home owners or ‘vendors’ the best advice possible to prepare their property for sale so the greatest sales result can be achieved. There are common questions that I am asked regarding what they can do to best groom their house for open home and naturally, my advice will vary with the house and budget at hand. Nevertheless, there are important actions any smart vendor should take before putting their house on the market should they wish to achieve the best sales result. Like the analogy of a first date- for home buyers, the first impression is everything so you must play with your best assets to reel in your suitors!



  • Street appeal: Put yourself in your buyer’s shoes, stand outside your house and evaluate its ‘street appeal’. You want to make any home buyer stop in their tracks and take a second look. What is attractive about the house, and what requires further attention? There is no such thing as a second first impression.


  • External grooming: Any vendor must be committed to cleaning their house thoroughly- from mowing the lawn, cleaning cobwebs, trimming hedges, cleaning the fly screens and clearing gutters. Home owners can at times become short sited to their own house’s ‘flaws’, so ask someone impartial with fresh eyes to go through the property with you and help make a checklist on what needs to be done. The same goes for the back of the house- remove all rubbish or clear out of site. Gardens and Lawns to be watered, green and pruned and looking its best which is one reason why spring is such a popular time to sell.


  • Internal grooming: Take the time to go through your home and clean it from top to bottom. Making small investments such as a fresh coat of paint, hiring a carpet steamer and using rug cleaner can make all the difference in creating a positive overall impression of the property.


  • No baggage: A major issue I usually address with home owners is the ‘clutter’. This could be furniture, rubbish or poor use of space. When selling, you want to present the home as open and spacious as possible. For example, tricks such as use of mirrors creates the illusion of more space. This is important to the buyer who wants to feel comfortable upon stepping into the home.


  •   Pleasant smell:  The smell of a house makes a big impression. If you’re a smoker or have pets, chances are- you have become immune to the smell which buyers will pick up on.Clean the kitchen, bathrooms and toilets to ensure there are no nasty odours, and light fresh scented candles burning 4 hours before and during the open house.


  •  Appeal to all your suitors: This could come down to dressing the house in  neutral colours and using furniture of neutral tones. In order to attract the most buyers that you can, make the home as neutral and versatile as possible.


Remember- there’s no such thing as a second first impression so do everything in your power to make it a good one.


About the writer: A licensed real estate agent and a qualified auctioneer, Geoff Luby got his start in real estate in 1978, bestowing him with a wealth of experience, knowledge and wisdom. He thrives on being in a position to help people, acknowledging that buying and selling property is one of the most important undertakings in people’s lives.

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