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“You will not find two more hard working and professional real estate agents than Shelley & Mark”

Making the decision to sell your home or investment property is one of life’s major milestones. Whether you are selling to upgrade, relocate to another area, cash up or downsize, it can be an exciting journey or a complex and overwhelming one without the right support and guidance.

At SHELMARK we work hard to ensure the property sale journey is as easy and stress-free for you as possible. We call it the SHELMARK Difference.

Contact us for an accurate, obligation free property appraisal today or to learn more about how we work differently to help you.


7 features buyers look for when house hunting

by ShelMarkblog In Uncategorized

26 April 2019

To capture the attention of the right buyers for your property when selling you have to think like one of them. Put yourself in their shoes and ask yourself, “What is on my wish list for my new home?” Understanding this will help you recognise which features you need to accentuate when preparing your home for sale.

Interestingly, what most buyers actually want isn’t just the big ticket items you would expect.

Here are 7 features in a home that matter most to buyers:

1. More than one living area – while it may not be practical to add an extra living room to your home in the lead up to a sale if you have a small space, it is worth highlighting any extra living space (even if it’s only a sunroom) in your marketing. This also applies to open plan living, which is especially appealing to families. Often open plan areas can be worked into 2 living spaces (e.g. a lounge area for the parents and a play area for the kids) with some clever space planning.

2. Renovated or modernised wet areas – kitchen and bathroom renovations are big ticket items that feature prominently on the wish list of most buyers. If you haven’t done a full renovation, it’s worth highlighting any modernisations you have done. For instance, upgrading handles and tapware can do wonders to lift an older kitchen or bathroom.

3. Alfresco living – today’s modern, fast-paced lifestyle calls for a relaxing outdoor space at home. An alfresco area, particularly a covered, all-weather space that is readily accessible from the main internal living area, is high on most buyers’ wish lists.

4. Natural light – the more you can enhance and highlight your home’s natural light when selling, the more appealing it will be to buyers. Open your blinds and curtains and let the light in on home open days and inspections. There’s nothing less inviting than a buyer entering a dark home with all the lights on in the middle of the day.

5. A backyard – it doesn’t have to be big. Even a small yard with a lawn just big enough to kick a ball or play with the family pet is appealing to buyers with kids and/or fur babies. If your home is more suited to the downsizer market, the lower the maintenance of the backyard, the more appealing it will be.

6. Storage – Everyone loves a home with plenty of storage because it makes it so much easier to keep the place tidy. So make sure all the storage spaces in your home, from linen closets and built-in robes to workshops and garden sheds, are prominently featured in your marketing.

7. Generously sized bedrooms – If your home’s bedrooms are all large enough to fit double or queen sized beds, ensure your marketing says so. Better still, if your home is to be professionally styled, put a double bed in at least one of the minor bedrooms so buyers can see this for themselves.

As long established local real estate professionals we know what buyers want and work hard to showcase those features in your professional photographs and marketing copy.

Contact us to learn more.

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Live mode versus sell mode

by ShelMarkblog In Uncategorized

18 April 2019

One of the most common mistakes people make when they put their property on the market is to put it on too quickly.

The time it takes to prepare a home for sale depends on the state of the property, the motivation of the owners and the time and money they have to spend on it. The duration between ‘live mode’ and ‘sell mode’ hinges on two key things – the preparation required and the owner’s end goal. So what do we mean when we say, ‘live mode’ and ‘sell mode’?

When an owner is enjoying and living in their property, they are in ‘live mode’. However, when an owner decides to sell, a shift in mindset has to occur.

It is important to prepare the home correctly and turn it from a home they enjoy living in, to a home that buyers could imagine themselves living in – a marketable property that is ready to be advertised, showcased and sold.

Tips to transition your home from live mode to sell mode

• Start the move now by packing away any items you don’t absolutely need while the property is on the market.
• De-clutter. This doesn’t mean removing everything to the point where the home looks bare and uninviting. It simply means creating space so a potential new owner can imagine moving their possessions into each room. De-cluttering will also give the illusion of extra space in more compact homes.
• Depersonalise. Take down your family photos, Grandma’s tapestry and your children’s artwork. Let the property breathe.

Buyers coming through a property want to visualise themselves living there. They can only do that if the property presents not as the owner’s home but as their potential new home. A professional agent will help you showcase the property’s best features and how the potential purchaser could live there.

Transitioning from live mode to sell mode generates the emotional connection needed to drive a successful sale.

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The profit in your garden

by ShelMarkblog In Uncategorized

11 April 2019

When preparing their home for sale, most people pay close attention to the house itself, but often neglect to consider the state of their garden. And yet the garden can have a massive impact on the profit of a sale.

In real estate, we refer to the front shot of a property as the ‘dollar shot’. A purchaser’s expectations are established from the moment they set eyes on a property. Most will do a drive-by to determine whether or not to inspect a property. If a buyer drives by and sees rubbish piled high at the side of the house and an unkempt garden they will think, “Not this one. The owners don’t look after it”. Then they will cross that property off their open home list and move on to the next one.

An inviting garden creates a very important first impression
If the front garden is well maintained, the lawns are mowed and neatly edged, the shrubs and trees pruned and the garden beds weeded and filled with vibrant colour or lush greenery, buyers get an impression of a very well-maintained and loved property. It encourages them to feel an emotional connection to the property and imagine themselves living there. This is crucial because, without an emotional connection, a buyer is very unlikely to make an offer. Think of your garden as a marketing tool and a means to enhance the property and ensure it creates an impact. There’s profit in a well-maintained, landscaped garden.

Start early and think ‘less is more’
If you are preparing your home for the market, start as early as possible and adopt a ‘less is more’ approach. Ruthlessly cutting back and pruning your garden over a single weekend just before listing gives the impression that the home has been rushed to market. A better approach would be to take the time to tend to your well-established garden in the months and weeks leading up to the sale.

Consider investing in some beautiful pot plants to strategically place in and around your home. Not only will you be able to take them with you when you move, but well placed pot plants create atmosphere and a stunning visual impact, especially in the marketing photography.

To complement your well-maintained garden, gurney the driveway and have the exterior of your house professionally washed, including the windows. For a few hundred dollars, a professional exterior clean will remove cobwebs, invite the sunshine in, and leave the exterior of your home looking fresh and clean. In most cases, a professional exterior clean and gurney will have your home looking so good that it won’t need repainting.

Don’t underestimate the impact of a garden. Not only does it create a great first impression, but there’s also the potential to make serious profit from it. Look after it and it will look after you.

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What are the greatest energy guzzlers at home?

by ShelMarkblog In Uncategorized

05 April 2019

We’ve all been there. You receive your quarterly energy bill, gasp at the figure and wonder where on earth all the energy goes in your home.

Are certain appliances greater energy guzzlers than others? Or are the occupants of your home solely the reason why the graph on your bill indicates that you are consuming the energy for a household of five when there are only three of you?

Where does all the energy go?
According to recent federal government research, heating and cooling are the biggest contributing factor to high energy bills. The research showed that heating and cooling accounts for 30% of the energy bills in Australian households (add 10% to that for the cooler parts of the country).

This is followed by hot water (20%), refrigerators and freezers (12%) and IT and home entertainment (8%). You may have expected the last one to be up higher.

How to reduce your energy consumption
A great place to start reducing your energy consumption is to focus on the number one contributor – heating and cooling. For instance, if you have a tendency to leave the air conditioner on overnight, stop. Use an extra blanket in winter or open windows in summer instead. It’s also better for your health.

So what about individual appliances? Are some greater culprits than others?

Yes. It all comes down to the energy rating. The more stars, the more energy-efficient the product is compared to other models in its category.

Appliances with a higher star rating may cost more at the outset but they’ll probably save you more in the long run.

Let’s take a look at an example. Based on an estimated energy price of $0.3 per kWh, a television with a seven-star label would cost you approximately $30 per year to run. Whereas a television with a three-star rating would cost $120 a year. Imagine doing the calculations with all the main appliances in your home. The savings can be significant.

Here are a few other tips to reduce your energy bills at home.

In the kitchen:
• Keep a good gap between the wall and your fridge for air flow, ensure the seal is tight and don’t overfill it.
• Wait until the dishwasher is full before running it.
• Cover pots and pans to reduce cooking time.
• Turn appliances like kettles and toasters off at the wall.

In your living areas:
• If you have a/c, set it to a lower temp in winter (e.g. 18-20 degrees) – also applies to central heating – and a higher temp in summer (e.g. 24-26 degrees). Then dress for the weather.
• Prevent drafts in winter by checking seals around windows and doors.
• Close curtains and blinds at night in winter when the heating is on as a lot of heat is lost through glass.
• Replace traditional lights with LED lights and switch them off when leaving the room.

In the laundry:
• Use the cold wash cycle.
• If you do use hot water, set it to 60°C.
• Use a clothesline instead of a dryer.
• Wait until you have a full load before washing.

In the bathroom:
• Install low-flow showerheads.
• Have shorter showers (four minutes or less). Good luck enforcing that if you have teens at home!

For more ideas on ways to save energy, visit www.poweringforward.energy.gov.au

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