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Preparing Your Property – Leave Buyers & Tenants No Excuses To Negotiate
You know the drill. Your spent the morning housekeeping your property, took a trip to the supermarket to buy some decorative material and even made sure your wifi is functioning alright. And when a potential buyer arrive for the viewing and inspect your apartment like a military bunk, he will offer you a low price to kick start the negotiation. There is just something about your air-conditioner not being cold enough or your lights not responding fast enough that give the potential buyer ammunition for negotiation. The irony is that you handed over those ammunition.
Well so much for all the work you put in. You might wonder what could possibly happen if the buyer has absolutely no excuses to put in an obscene first offer that you feel is insulting your intelligence. To eliminate shooting yourself in the foot, here is a checklist to follow before showing off your property to prospects whether they are buyers or tenants.
Plumbing & pipes
Check all piping for leaks and drips. Make sure all sinks drain quickly. Replace off colour toilet seats. Check on all fixtures in the bathrooms to make sure everything is working properly. Remove stains that was caused by leaks in the past. Stains make pipes look corroded no matter how functional they still are.
Check whether all power outlets are working. There must be an adequate number of power points in each room. These days with everyone so dependent on technology, having 1 or 2 power supply points in each room is not enough. Using too many multi-plugs is a sign that there is an inadequate number of power outlets. Make sure that wirings are not exposed. They not only make your apartment look bad, but can also be a safety hazard.
Needless to say, your air-conditioner must be working. When you switch it on at it’s coldest, the air should feel cold. Get it serviced if you had not done so within the last 6 months. Sometimes, air-conditioners can also omit weird odours. Get a chemical wash if required. Clean your filters. Dirty filters give prospects the impression that you never service your system even if you had just done so last week.
Cracked windows and window panes have to be replaced. Test the hinges to make sure they open and close smoothly. Sometime property owners just seal up a broken window as they are too lazy to replace or repair them. Don’t be that sort of owner.
If you are selling your house, you might be removing all appliances except those that are built-in. But if you are preparing your property for tenants, some standard appliances have to be provided. These include television sets, washing machines, refrigerators, etc. Make sure everything is cleaned and in working order.
Ceilings and walls
Repaint peeling paint work and repair cracks. The easy way is to use wallpaper. Just be sure to consider the colour scheme of your home decorations. You ceiling may also be leaking. Be observant and look for patches of moisture.
A very common problem with doors is a faulty catch. I wonder why property owners never seem to fix them. Doors must open and close easily. Also check the keys to each door to see if they work properly. You can easily remove creaking sounds by oiling the hinges. Having too many locks just gives your prospect something extra to mull over… because they will have to remove them without damaging tor door or replace it altogether.
If your property includes a garden, remember to cut the grass and water your plants. Beautiful landscaping can really increase the perceived value of your property.
The dustiest part of your house is probably the store room. So making it look great will make prospects think about how well your house is being maintained. Throw away the stuff that you are never going to use. Everyone has them. But a seller who means business should tidy it up.
If you are too lazy to get your housekeeping in tip top condition, consider hiring someone to do it for you. If your is a small apartment, you can get the whole place in mint condition in a day for less than $100. When you put that against the increase perceived value and a faster deal being made, it is worth the money to hire people who does housekeeping for a living.
Nothing is negligible when it comes to safety. Look out for protruding sharp corners, nails on the walls, platforms that can trip over, window grills, etc. When you find something that has a small hint as a safety hazard, take immediate action to remedy them. You are responsible to keep your apartment as a safe place.
So there you have it. 11 items on your cheat sheet. When you go through them and remedy faults that you find in your property, the potential buyer and tenant will have no room to maneuver. They may even think that your property is very good value at the price that you are seeking. Accept your cheques with grace.