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How long to get your house ready for sale?


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#1 MuddyPuddles

Posted 16 January 2020 - 02:23 PM

We decided recently to sell our home of 12 years and foolishly thought it wont take too long to get it into shape to put on the market.

Well! It's only been three weeks but the list of things that need doing just keep getting longer and longer!

I'm wondering, how long did it take you to get your house ready for sale from the time you decided to sell?

Any tips?

#2 jayskette

Posted 16 January 2020 - 02:28 PM

5 years, still going. the saving money to get each job done is the major cause lol

#3 Beancat

Posted 16 January 2020 - 02:32 PM

4 weeks.  We had bought a block of land and the agent wanted to take advantage of a hot market and got to auction on our house.

I guess it depends on what you need to do but we
decluttered  - massive job
painted the whole house
tidied the garden back and front and mulched
painted front fence
bought a few things and styled the place

in terms of decluttering we didn't waste time selling stuff - we gave it away or put it in the skip and the valuable stuff we stored.  Selling things is time consuming and wastes time.  Big advice hire a skip - that way you dont waste time going back and forth to the tip and packing things to fit in a trailer.

Paint makes a huge difference

Get rid of all of your personal photos and other stuff on walls, ie uni degrees etc

We didnt do any big jobs - changes are the new owners will make changes anyway - it just needs to look spacious, light, clean and not too personal

#4 seayork2002

Posted 16 January 2020 - 02:39 PM

It was a straightforward two up mid terrace so not long really - did a bit out the front did a basic job on the back and decluttered and bought a few basics to smarten it up a little.

#5 rosie28

Posted 16 January 2020 - 03:06 PM

4 days. We bought and had the photographer come to take listing photos for our house 4 days later. It was a three bedroom townhouse though so easier than if we had a garden (though current enormous garden looks good today!). Massive declutter, everything spotless (usually very clean and tidy) purchased a few things to style it and my brother helped a bit. Fixed a few little broken things, touched up some paint. Quite a stressful few days but well worth it.

#6 AllyK81

Posted 16 January 2020 - 03:12 PM

3 weeks. This included a full repaint and styling. The decluttering was the hardest but once that was done the rest fell into place.

#7 MuddyPuddles

Posted 16 January 2020 - 03:26 PM

I am in awe of most of you!! Clearly my familt has way too much stuff (aka crap)! Our lawns and gardens are also in terrible shape. Hats off to you who have nice uncluttered homes normally lol

#8 aluminium

Posted 16 January 2020 - 04:13 PM

Well, MuddyPuddles, we've been here for 13-years and decluttering alone is taking me weeks - you accumulate a lot when you stay in one place - give yourself a bit more time.

#9 Dianalynch

Posted 16 January 2020 - 04:39 PM

3 months, it was over a Christmas period and we were not rushed for time as we wanted to auction late feb - we had some repairs done, garden overhaul, a few rooms repainted, decluttered, sold some older furniture, bought some modern furniture to brighten it up (ikea furniture was cheaper than renting) and some new items to style it a tad. It was awful, though not as bad as living through the auction campaign and getting it ready for every open for inspection when I had a 2yo and 6yo...worth it though we made a tidy sum.

#10 seayork2002

Posted 16 January 2020 - 04:52 PM

View PostMuddyPuddles, on 16 January 2020 - 03:26 PM, said:

I am in awe of most of you!! Clearly my familt has way too much stuff (aka crap)! Our lawns and gardens are also in terrible shape. Hats off to you who have nice uncluttered homes normally lol

My excuse was we were returning to Australia we were getting rid of stuff as fast as we could,  we are normally that clear of stuff

#11 just roses

Posted 16 January 2020 - 05:01 PM

Oh gosh, I can’t imagine getting it all done in a matter of weeks let alone days!

We’ve just started a 12 month project to get out house ready to rent out next year. So far, I’ve ordered new security doors and screens, booked a sparky to fix the oven and called up about fixing a broken kitchen drawer. Next week, I’m booking to get wired smoke alarms and maintenance on the water filter (whole of house).

We’ve also started a massive declutter and expect it will take months. And this is a house that’s actually in great shape. There are just a lot of little things that we’ve gotten used to living with that need fixing. Like a bathroom flourish that’s been out for months but the kids don’t care so we haven’t bothered to replace it.

Our list is long, and that’s

#12 born.a.girl

Posted 16 January 2020 - 05:15 PM

Oh about five years!   In our defence, we were both working full time with a baby/toddler and the weatherboard house hadn't been painted since the 1960s, was an edwardian so tall enough to have an attic, so the exterior painting was the main thing.


This was mid 90s and the house price then couldn't justify having someone else do the work, so we just plodded on.


Now, what I'd do is have one of those companies that do it all for you.  Real estate agents can put you on to one.

A few years ago, with a seemingly unending list, plus house painting, we used a company that a friend had used for their relative's house (when they were selling it) and were very happy with them.

Minor stuff that just got added to the list:

*yuck behind the sealant between the sink and the vertical tiles.

* mould in the grouting in the shower

* a few holes filled where power points had been removed/shifted

* re-hanging the wardrobe doors with new hinges

* fitting a new door to replace a badly fitting one

* putting on the reproduction door handles that we'd had for probably ten years but couldn't work out how to fit them.

*re-fit the front gates which had been sitting around the side of the house for ,oooh probably ten years, too.



We were mainly looking for a painter, but through this company were able to organise floor sanding and the exterior painting, along with the above, which was part of an even longer list.



All those pesky little jobs just keep adding up. It was a joy to have them all done in one go.

#13 kim27

Posted 16 January 2020 - 05:47 PM

I’m hoping I can do mine in a few weeks. It was repainted inside a year ago, floors are booked into get sanded and polished and there are new curtains and blinds. Oh and the porch is cracked and needs concreting or tiling and there is a large crack in the kitchen wall due to the drought that has also cracked some of the kitchen tiles.

My place is more likely to go as an investment property or even get bulldozed as the suburb has been rezoned.

The bathroom and kitchen (especially the kitchen) are way overdue to be redone but it’s not worth it for the type of house it is.

#14 rubyskye

Posted 16 January 2020 - 05:59 PM

Reading with interest as we've just decided to sell and have quite a few jobs to do before we can go ahead (repainting, new carpet etc).

#15 tothebeach

Posted 16 January 2020 - 06:11 PM

View PostAllyK81, on 16 January 2020 - 03:12 PM, said:

3 weeks. This included a full repaint and styling. The decluttering was the hardest but once that was done the rest fell into place.
3 weeks for us too, including paint and styling.  Including all minor repairs and cosmetic redoing of one of the en-suites and new mulch etc in the garden.  The hardest thing was making sure that we got rid of enough things so that we could store our furniture in the shed to make room for the styled furniture.   And then we ended up storing some of the styled furniture there too as I thought it made our lounge room look too cluttered.

#16 froglett

Posted 16 January 2020 - 08:00 PM

Took us 4 weeks. My mental health is still recovering.

We bought a block of land and decided to sell on a whim (my whim - oops)

The house was in reasonable shape internally (we’d done a major Reno 3 years ago), but we had to do a massive declutter, paint and new deck outside plus styling (I did myself). DH and I both work full time, so it was every evening after work plus weekends.

But we sold in 2 weeks.

#17 Popper

Posted 17 January 2020 - 07:17 AM

Our last house took us 2 days to prepare for sale. We are very much a minimalist family and rather pedantic about the upkeep so it was minor touch up paint, photography and staging.

It also helped that it was a hot property market at the time and we sold it in the first 8 hours by ourselves without a RE agent for more than we anticipated.

#18 Cheesy Sanga

Posted 17 January 2020 - 07:56 AM

View PostMuddyPuddles, on 16 January 2020 - 02:23 PM, said:

Well! It's only been three weeks but the list of things that need doing just keep getting longer and longer!

Have you had one or more agents come have a look with their thoughts on your house/street/suburb? Make sure you're not doing too much that won't return any value.

Is your house likely to be demolished or substantially renovated? There's no point painting, etc. Or is your house in good order and the new owner would just move in and do nothing? Painting and fixing all those little things that you lived with would be worth it.

Our first house sale the house was only a few years old so not much needed doing. We'd only been there a few years and didn't have kids so we were ready very quickly.

Second house was an old house but the suburb was being gentrified so we didn't bother doing anything except a tidy up. We'd only been in this house a few years as well and still no kids so we got ready quickly.

Last house was another old one. Suburb was also being gentrified so we only tidied up. We'd only been in this house for a few years as well but we'd had a kid and one on the way so this one took at lot longer to get ready.


#19 Soontobegran

Posted 17 January 2020 - 08:27 AM

Six months of daily slog.

We had lived there for 40 years.

#20 kitkatswing

Posted 17 January 2020 - 08:31 AM

6 months of renovating and decluttering....

Its been up for sale for 6 months now...   Over it....

#21 Tinsilitis

Posted 17 January 2020 - 08:33 AM

Last house was 6 weeks. There was some painting, but for the most part that was just cleaning and decluttering,  steam cleaning carpets, and washing down walls with sugar soap etc.

We had already bought so we had a timeline to work to.

We fixed those broken things, like the broken steps in the yard, but didn't do any renovations as such.

#22 MuddyPuddles

Posted 17 January 2020 - 08:54 AM

View PostCheesy Sanga, on 17 January 2020 - 07:56 AM, said:

Have you had one or more agents come have a look with their thoughts on your house/street/suburb? Make sure you're not doing too much that won't return any value.

Is your house likely to be demolished or substantially renovated? There's no point painting, etc. Or is your house in good order and the new owner would just move in and do nothing? Painting and fixing all those little things that you lived with would be worth it.

We've had three agents through now, and that's part of the reason our list keeps growing! They keep pointing out all the things we've come to ignore over the long time we've been here (like replacing the mirror cabinet that had gone dark around the edges). It has been really good to get professional advice on where to spend money/time/effort but there is a LOT more to do than I originally anticipated.

Decluttering is taking ages because the kids and DH are very attached to things. I've also been trying to sell things, but I think after all the time wasters I'm probably just going to be donating most things instead of selling from now on.

Our area isn't being gentrified so no chance of knock down rebuilds. Two agents said to us the main buyers in our area are immigrants that don't have a lot of money but are very meticulous going through the house and will notice every little thing we don't do (eg painting under the eaves where there is spots, replacing the dark silicone in the shower etc). It's a lot of work for what is a first home buyer, lower income area....

#23 MuddyPuddles

Posted 17 January 2020 - 08:55 AM

View Postkitkatswing, on 17 January 2020 - 08:31 AM, said:

Its been up for sale for 6 months now...   Over it....

Oh my goodness, 6 months on the market! I dont think I could cope with home opens and trying to keep the house clean for that long!  Is that normal for the area you're in?

#24 kitkatswing

Posted 17 January 2020 - 09:25 AM

View PostMuddyPuddles, on 17 January 2020 - 08:55 AM, said:

Oh my goodness, 6 months on the market! I dont think I could cope with home opens and trying to keep the house clean for that long!  Is that normal for the area you're in?

I stopped open houses after 5 months, only available for private viewings now.

Its exhausting to be honest. Having to hide things every time we have someone in. Especially with a 6 yr old girl and a dog in the mix!

Our house is very big, the smaller 3 bedroom houses go very quickly. But ours is 5 bedrooms, 2 huge lounges, plus study, spa and wet bar.  It will need a large family.

#25 cakeys_mummy

Posted 17 January 2020 - 12:17 PM

We’ve done ours in a few weeks (while working) - including a miraculous 9-day bathroom reno from the agent’s special guy. The storage unit has been the big thing for us - and removing half the furniture! A few cushions from Kmart and it looks great.




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