WORDS: SUPPLIED • IMAGES: SHUTTERSTOCK
Given our unique circumstances, it’s understandable that activity in the housing market will be slow at best. Yet, the need to buy real estate – whether for the purpose of relocating, downscaling, or simply for a change of scenery – still exists, which means that sellers will be able to close a sale if they market their home correctly.
“Now, more than ever before, sellers should fix up and stage their home to ensure that their property has the best chance of being noticed by the small pool of qualified buyers who are serious about making a purchase over this time,” advises Adrian Goslett, regional director and CEO, RE/MAX of Southern Africa.
The first thing he recommends changing is the study or home office space. “Now that we’re all working more remotely, a well-fitted home office is likely to be an incredibly appealing feature to buyers,” he predicts. If a seller has a temporary setup or does not yet have a home office area, he recommends transforming a room or a space in the home into a fully functional office.
Beyond this, Goslett also highlights the importance of a well-maintained garden. “Those who have spent lockdown in an apartment block are likely to be searching for homes with some garden space. If a seller’s property has any outdoor area, they could increase the appeal of the home simply by making that space as functional and aesthetically pleasing as possible,” he recommends.
Space is another factor that most buyers are likely to be paying more attention to over this time. Buyers are asking themselves whether they would be able to comfortably spend months in this home.
“One of the biggest frustrations in this scenario is feeling caged in by a home that’s cramped or feeling like there’s no place to escape to for some alone time. Sellers should declutter their homes to make their property feel more spacious. Those with open-plan living areas might also consider creating a separate space that can be closed off to allow for some privacy,” says Goslett.
If you can afford it, get an experienced home stager to help create private nooks through smart furniture placements and design.