The trick that could add $100,000 to your home

The trick that could add $100,000 to your home

In a competitive marketplace, selling a home is no longer a straightforward transaction. From the artfully placed indoor plant to the striking artwork and fluffed-up cushions, home staging is now a common aspect of the home selling process. But does styling your home with the perfect furniture and artwork really help you make more money when selling?

“Absolutely it does,” says Rick Nicholson, a real estate agent with McGrath Inner West in Sydney. “Especially if the house needs that help to get it over the line. Buyers tend not to be able to visualise what a space can look like. You can say to a buyer, this room can easily fit a queen bed but if it’s empty they’ll say it won’t even fit a single.”

Using a professional home-staging company can set you back anywhere from $3500 for a two-bedroom apartment or semi to $10,000 for a larger home, according to Nicholson. But it can add up to $60,000 to your sale price.

Getting it right

Nicholson has proven experience with the power of home staging. Two years ago he recommended home staging to the vendors of a tired two-bedroom apartment. “It had been tenanted for many years and was rundown, really dark and had blue carpet,” he says.

On his advice, the vendors ripped up the carpet and painted the walls and had the apartment professionally styled with selected furniture and accessories. The total revamp, including the staging, cost $7000 to $8000, according to Nicholson. The apartment sold for $860,000.

The owner of the apartment directly below ignored Nicholson’s advice to give her property a similar staging treatment. Despite having the same footprint as the first apartment, this property sold a few months later for $760,000. “That illustrates the difference styling can make,” Nicholson says.

Should you do it?

Staging is designed to show a property in the best possible light. That means decluttering, brightening up the décor, clearing floor space for bump-free inspections and adding the right furniture into each room.

“Unless the house itself has many features that buyers are looking for – such as size, position, a north-facing aspect – I recommend home staging,” Nicholson advises. “It takes away the doubt buyers may have as to what they can fit into the property and it gives them a nice visual.”

What else can you do?

“At the very least, I would recommend to everyone that you declutter your home before putting it on the market,” Nicholson adds. “You don’t want people bumping into the furniture.”

While it may be counter-intuitive for most people, Nicholson also recommends de-personalising your home before selling – particularly packing away family photos. “The reason being is that you want people coming in to feel like this is their home, or that it’s going to be their home,” he says.

An impeccably clean and tidy home is of course a given, but don’t neglect the insides of wardrobes and kitchen cupboards. And pack away the dishwasher. “It’s amazing how many buyers open cupboard doors,” Nicholson says.

“Finally, always make sure the house is spotless. If you have animals, I would suggest putting them up with a friend during the inspection period.”

Did you find this helpful? Why not share this article?



Money Health Newsletter

Subscribe for news, tips and expert opinions to help you make smarter financial decisions

By signing up, you agree to the Privacy & Cookies Policy and Terms of Use, Disclaimer & Privacy Policy


Learn more about home loans

Mortgage Calculator, Property Value

An estimate of how much your desired property is worth. 

Mortgage Calculator, Interest Rate

The percentage of the loan amount you will be charged by your lender to borrow. 

Mortgage Calculator, Loan Amount

How much you intend to borrow. 

What do mortgage brokers do?

Mortgage brokers are finance professionals who help borrowers organise home loans with lenders. As such, they act as middlemen between borrowers and lenders.

While bank staff recommend home loan products only from their own employer, brokers are independent, so they can recommend products from a range of institutions.

Brokers need to be accredited with a particular lender to be able to work with that lender. A typical broker will be accredited with anywhere from 10 to 30 lenders – the big four banks, as well as a range of smaller banks, credit unions and non-bank lenders.

As a general rule, brokers don’t charge consumers for their services; instead, they receive commissions from lenders whenever they place a borrower with that institution.

What is a fixed home loan?

A fixed rate home loan is a loan where the interest rate is set for a certain amount of time, usually between one and 15 years. The advantage of a fixed rate is that you know exactly how much your repayments will be for the duration of the fixed term. There are some disadvantages to fixing that you need to be aware of. Some products won’t let you make extra repayments, or offer tools such as an offset account to help you reduce your interest, while others will charge a significant break fee if you decide to terminate the loan before the fixed period finishes.

How much deposit do I need for a home loan from NAB?

The right deposit size to get a home loan with an Australian lender will depend on the lender’s eligibility criteria and the value of your property.

Generally, lenders look favourably on applicants who save up a 20 per cent deposit for their property This also means applicants do not have to pay Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI). However, you may still be able to obtain a mortgage with a 10 - 15 per cent deposit.  

Keep in mind that NAB is one of the participating lenders for the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme, which allows eligible borrowers to buy a property with as low as a 5 per cent deposit without paying the LMI. The Federal Government guarantees up to 15 per cent of the deposit to help first-timers to become homeowners.

Mortgage Calculator, Loan Purpose

This is what you will use the loan for – i.e. investment. 

Do other comparison sites offer the same service?

Real Time RatingsTM is the only online system that ranks the home loan market based on your personal borrowing preferences. Until now, home loans have been rated based on outdated data. Our system is unique because it reacts to changes as soon as we update our database.

Mortgage Calculator, Repayments

The money you pay back to your lender at regular intervals. 

Mortgage Balance

The amount you currently owe your mortgage lender. If you are not sure, enter your best estimate.

How much are repayments on a $250K mortgage?

The exact repayment amount for a $250,000 mortgage will be determined by several factors including your deposit size, interest rate and the type of loan. It is best to use a mortgage calculator to determine your actual repayment size.

For example, the monthly repayments on a $250,000 loan with a 5 per cent interest rate over 30 years will be $1342. For a loan of $300,000 on the same rate and loan term, the monthly repayments will be $1610 and for a $500,000 loan, the monthly repayments will be $2684.

What is breach of contract?

A failure to follow all or part of a contract or breaking the conditions of a contract without any legal excuse. A breach of contract can be material, minor, actual or anticipatory, depending on the severity of the breaches and their material impact.

How can I get a home loan with no deposit?

Following the Global Financial Crisis, no-deposit loans, as they once used to be known, have largely been removed from the market. Now, if you wish to enter the market with no deposit, you will require a property of your own to secure a loan against or the assistance of a guarantor.

What is the ratings scale?

The ratings are between 0 and 5, shown to one decimal point, with 5.0 as the best. The ratings should be used as an easy guide rather than the only thing you consider. For example, a product with a rating of 4.7 may or may not be better suited to your needs than one with a rating of 4.5, but both are probably much better than one with a rating of 1.2.