1. Use a property stylist. Of course I would say that, but until you get caught up in the demands of marketing your property in a very limited space of time, you have no idea how handy it can be to have someone objective to bounce ideas off.
2. Speculate to accumulate. No one likes to spend money unless they have to, but in this field, a little goes a long way. The market has been buoyant for a long time, nevertheless there are areas of Sydney that are flooded with new apartments and yours needs to stand out from the rest.
3. First impressions count. Make sure the property is clean, particularly the windows. Make sure all painting work is done far enough ahead so that the property doesn't smell during the opens. Put baits down for cockroaches and clear them before the inspections. Flush toilets, vacuum, open curtains and windows.
4. The entry or front garden needs to look spectacular. This is your first impression; the first thing your buyers see. Paint the door if it needs it, pop a plant beside it, put a mirror in the hallway, light a candle, make sure the garden is immaculate.
5. Choose neutral paint colours inside. Repaint walls if they are dark. Dark colours make spaces feel smaller and you want to maximise what space you have.
6. Style your kitchen and bathrooms if they are outdated. Make them look appealing with plants, decorator items, pretty toiletries and fresh, fluffy towels.
7. Clean and iron your bedlinen, or buy new for the opens. Better yet, invest in some white bedcovers that you can throw over the bed with some new cushions for inspections.
8. Invest in new carpet if needed.
9. Declutter. Declutter. Declutter. This should go without saying. Store anything that is not decorative. The space needs to be clean and inviting. Remove personal effects where possible.
10. Remove evidence of pets. Sadly, litter trays, paw prints and scratch marks will put some buyers off. Open windows if you have a pooch because even though you may not smell them, non pet-friendly buyers most certainly will. Do not leave your beloved pet at the inspection. Your agent cannot sell your property and watch your pet at the same time.
11. Inform your drummer or garden enthusiast next door the times of your property inspections so that noise around your property is limited.
12. Repaint woodwork, particularly if it is a varnished timber finish and you are trying to modernise your property's style. You might also consider replacing the door handles.