Now you’re ready to open the door to a fantastic price for your home – literally! Yes, open inspections are annoying (cleaning every Saturday morning!) but essential, because let’s face it, no prospective buyer is going to offer you hundreds of thousands of dollars for your home without giving it a thorough once over first.
Make a clean sweep… Before inspection day, make sure you’ve done everything you possibly can in the “Preparing your property for sale” section previously. Then give your place one last clean and de-clutter, removing everyday mess like shoes in the hall, the mail piling up, and pet bowls, etc. It’s also a good idea to put away any small valuables or trinkets, not only to de-personalise the space, but also to avoid tempting light-fingered guests.
Do a walk through… It is always a good idea to walk through your property for a final inspection first, and try to look at it through a buyer’s eyes. Remove anything that makes it look cluttered, but also take care not to make it look empty and unwelcoming. Do you think your buyers will be impressed by what they see? Are you showing off your home’s best features?
Take your temperature… Experience shows buyers are turned off by properties that are too hot or too cool. So, it’s important to air out your house, then get your temperature right, depending on the season and time of day, etc. Buyers should walk in and feel fresh and cool (not cold) if it’s hot outside, or warm and toasty – not sweaty – if it’s cooler.
Get out of the house… As tempted as you are to hang around and see how the open home goes, it’s best to get lost and leave prospective buyers to it. That way, they can tour your place at their leisure, and talk honestly to their partners and to your agent about what they really think. Don’t forget to take your pets with you too, to avoid that doggy or moggy smell, and also in case any prospective buyers are allergic.
Be flexible with open times…People have busy lives, kids to pick up, meetings that run late, and other properties to view, so it’s important to be flexible with open times so prospective buyers get to see your home too. While your agent will usually schedule a weekend and a weeknight viewing, unexpected inspections can pop up so make sure you keep the place tidy and be ready to duck out for an hour sometimes at short notice.
Welcome the feedback… After the inspection, you’ll no doubt be very keen to hear what your agent and the prospective buyers have to say about your property. Whether it’s face to face, a phone call or a detailed email and report, it’s important to get your agent’s feedback and really listen to what they have to say – even if it’s not always glowing. If you do get some negative responses, try not to get upset or defensive. Instead, talk through it together with your agent and plan how you can address any issues, whether it’s adjusting your price range, changing your marketing tactics, or maybe making a few simple cosmetic changes to improve your property’s chance of selling for a great price.