There’s no better time than spring to spruce up your home before the warmer weather settles in. Spring is also the peak selling season, so with a little time and tender loving care, you can make a big difference to the look of your home and improve your chances of a sale. However, if you’re not planning to put your property on the market, remember that it’s never a bad time to make small improvements, declutter or tend to overdue repairs to get your home looking its best.
Here’s our guide to making your home shine this spring.
You won't get a second chance to make a good first impression, so if you're wanting to sell your home, presenting your property at its best is crucial. As soon as buyers see your home, they will get an immediate emotional response — negative or positive. Put yourself in the buyer’s shoes and start by inspecting your home’s facade, alfresco areas, driveway and yard. Can you see cracks, flaking paint, broken tiles, pavers or brickwork, or old and torn window frames or fly screens? Inspect your gates and doors including security screens and your garage — how fresh does the paint work look, are there any scratches or dents, or is anything cracked or broken? A little bit of effort can go a long way in transforming your home from old and tired to fresh and well-maintained.
Your garden and lawn play a big part when it comes to first impressions. Start by giving your garden a thorough clean and tidy by raking old leaves and debris, mowing lawns, and decluttering the yard of tools and equipment. Hire a skip and throw out anything you don’t need or that doesn't add value to the presentation of the property.
Winter often brings with it a build-up of twigs, leaves and debris so inspect your roof, drains and gutters and clean them if necessary, or have a professional do so.
For plants that may have overgrown over winter, give them a prune to allow for fresh growth. Take the opportunity to replace old or dying plants with new bulbs and seeds best suited for the spring season, like bare-root trees and shrubs.
If gardening isn’t your thing, you can hire an expert to take the work off your hands and bring your outdoor areas back to life. A professional gardener in the ACT costs around $45 an hour according to 2019 research from ServiceSeeking.
There’s nothing more satisfying than admiring your home after a good spring clean, but the thought of the task may seem a bit daunting. An easy way to tackle a whole house clean is by breaking it into achievable tasks and committing to one room at a time. According to boutique cleaning agency Family Clean (familyclean.com.au), you should declutter and reorganise surfaces, cupboards and drawers before you actually start your spring clean. The agency says that decluttering can stir up a lot of dust, so you’ll be making more work for yourself if you try to clean before reorganising things.
If you’re putting your home on the market, attend to things that could catch buyers’ eyes and pay extra attention to rooms they will spend the most time in. This includes main traffic areas such as kitchens, living rooms and bathrooms which attract the most dirt. Windows and walls should also be a priority as dirty glass and marks can detract from a well-presented space. Also, don’t forget to clean and dust blinds and shutters, including light fittings, as the accumulation of dirt will be obvious to buyers during an open home.
After a long, cold winter, your pool will also need a deep clean. If you are putting your home on the market, it will need to be looking its best come inspection time. Remove algae and any build up of sticks, leaves, dust and debris, and be sure to check your pump and filter for any dirt accumulation.
Spring is a great opportunity to bring the season inside and brighten up your interior. An effective and budget-friendly way to give your indoor space a fresh look and feel is to inject colour and texture by renewing soft furnishings, bedding and accessories. Think patterned cushion covers, a new doona, a colourful throw blanket or a vibrant statement rug.
If you are having an open home, then natural light will make a significant difference to the feel and look. Make sure you allow as much light to shine through as possible. White or neutral-coloured curtains help to brighten up rooms, as do blinds that are partially see-through, allowing the spring sunlight to stream into bedrooms and living areas.
With spring comes warm air so it is also the perfect time to crack open the paint tin and add a fresh coat to old, drab or cracked interior walls, or make a statement with a feature wall. You don't have to dedicate a lot of time and money to painting as a little bit of paint can go a long way and completely transform your home, so focus on what your potential buyers will see first.
If you are planning on renovating before the sale, have you thought about a skylight? It will allow warmth into hallways or rooms that don't see the light of day. If your room faces south-east, you may need to make it a tad larger than if your room faces north-west. However, it is important to understand the climate and if you don't want to overheat your rooms in the Australian summer, talk to a professional about the most appropriate size and location of the skylight.
Preventing mould during winter can be a challenge as the constant clash of cold and warm surfaces, moisture and air becomes the perfect breeding ground. If there are signs of mould in your home after winter, it’s important to address it straight away — it not only poses a health risk to you and your family, but it will likely deter potential buyers as well. Depending on the amount of mould, you can remove it yourself or hire a professional cleaner to do so. If you are going to do it yourself then wear a mask when cleaning up; spores can be breathed in and affect your health, so take extra caution.
For all of your property needs, contact your local Peter Blackshaw office.