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How to maximise the value of your property
BlogThe Kitchen Of A Client Who Maximised The Value Of Their Property
How to maximise the value of your property

If you’re looking to maximise the value of your property, we’ll teach you all of the secrets we’ve learnt over the years whilst running Harcourts Caloundra and throughout our real estate careers.

Our insights today include direct quotes and advice from Luke Carter, Harcourts Caloundra's esteemed principal agent. 

With over 15 years of experience and more than $1 billion in Sunshine Coast real estate sales to date, Luke's expertise offers invaluable advice for homeowners looking to increase their property's market appeal and value. 

Keep reading to uncover the secrets to successful property improvements with advice from one of the industry's best.

How to strategically add to your property to increase value

When brainstorming ways to increase your property’s value, Luke believes that – 

LC: There are really only two ways to add value to a property.

The first and easiest strategy is to let the market improve and the price increase naturally with the rising market.

As they say, ‘a rising tide lifts all boats’ however, in our experience, the can require time or luck and maybe a bit of both.

During my time as a real estate agent, If you’re patient and can hold your property long enough, the market will deliver an increase in value.

The only other way to add value is to improve the property by either adding to the property or improving what already exists.

With this in mind, let’s learn more about adding to the property vs improving what already exists. 

By the end of this blog, you’ll know what works and what doesn’t for both strategies and be ready to implement some of these into your own property.

Strategy 1: Adding to the property

The first strategy property owners use to maximise the value of their property without any change in the market is through significant additions and improvements.

This involves adding infrastructure or volume to an existing dwelling with the hopes that buyers will be willing to pay more for these upgrades.

You should keep in mind, that this strategy is usually a much more drawn-out and costly process, often requiring approvals and work from major contractors. 

If done incorrectly, you risk minimal return on your investment resulting in you breaking even or even losing money. 

The rewards however can lead to a substantial increase in property value that exceeds the initial investment and significantly boosts the property's appeal.

The most important question to ask yourself if you’re considering improving your property’s value in this manner is: “Is this change going to make the property more livable or improve the natural advantage of a position?”.

Let’s take a look at strategies that Luke has found to have worked for previous clients, and strategies he’s found that haven't.

Strategies that work

In our experience, additions that create a bigger and better living space for larger families have the potential to add the most value.

LC: When looking at additions that yield a strong ROI, we’ve found historically that adding more bedrooms, another bathroom or vehicle storage can most definitely add more value.

Although this is a larger project, we’ve also found owners who take advantage of their strategic position and add another level that provides an ocean view have also seen a great ROI.

While not all properties are situated by the ocean, if you have any opportunity to improve the view from your home, this is an upgrade that could pay dividends when it comes time to sell your property. 

With projects like this however, we always recommend that you speak to your local property valuer. 

Other additions that have generated a strong increase in property value include:

  • Adding a deck, patio or outdoor kitchen
  • Building a granny flat to rent out (Be careful with budgeting) 

Not all extensions are created equal, however. Keep reading to learn what strategies don’t add value.

Strategies that don’t work

LC: We’ve found that in the past, adding smaller improvements like a front fence, solar power or an EV charging station don’t necessarily increase a property’s value.

While these additions can definitely improve the salability of a home, in a lot of instances, the value added may only equal the money initially outlaid.

While “going big or going home” isn’t necessarily what we’re trying to say here, ask yourself the question we recommended you should consider earlier in the blog – ”is this change going to make the property more livable or improve the natural advantage of a position?”

Other additions we’ve found that haven’t added value for clients we’ve worked with include:

  • Specialised rooms like home theatres or wine cellars
  • Swimming pools

Again, if you’re unsure about whether or not an addition you want to build will maximise the value of your property, we recommend you speak to a real estate professional who has experience with property valuations.

Strategy 2: Improving what already exists

The second way to add value to your property is to work with and improve what is already in place.

This strategy generally costs less than additions and extensions, and can significantly improve your home's value while often requiring no approval from council or building certifiers. 

Let’s see Luke’s top 4 recommendations for improving what already exists.

Tip Number 1: Increase your properties street appeal

LC: Our number one recommendation for people who want to add value to their property is to improve what people see first.

Improving your street or curb appeal is where we see the biggest impact on sale price.

A home that is appealing from the street often achieves a much better outcome and is quite often the most cost-effective improvement.

Some examples of front yard improvements include:

  • Freshly laid turf
  • Re-landscaping the front yard
  • Re-sealing the driveway
  • Replacing an old roller door with a more modern design 

For those on a budget, you don’t necessarily need to spend big to see an increase in home value.

LC: Something as small as adding a few nice established feature plants when landscaping the front yard can make a huge difference when compared to planting small cheaper plants it is a small cost addition but will make a big impact.

With the right vision you can find that upgrades with relatively minor costs have big impacts and are often overlooked. 

Tip Number 2: Spend money where buyers will see it

Our second most important tip when adding value via a renovation is to make sure you spend the money where buyers will see it as it is these places that make the biggest impact. 

LC: Completely rewiring a home is not going to have the same impact as a new state-of-the-art kitchen just as a new back fence won't have the same impact as re-landscaping the front yard and laying fresh turf.

While the obvious choices for improvements with this tip in mind are your kitchen and bathroom, as you’ll see in tip 3, it’s not always the largest investments that generate the biggest increase in value. 

Tip Number 3: Smaller investments can have the biggest impact

While larger-scale renovations can improve your property’s value as well as provide a positive ROI if done in the right way, there are a range of more affordable updates that can add value without breaking the bank. 

LC: Internally, adding fresh paint and new floor coverings are relatively small outlays that can generate a big impact.

If you want to step it up, new kitchens and bathrooms always have appeal but be careful about blowing out your budget and the design you choose.

Loud designs that are too on-trend can actually hurt the overall value and saleability of your property as you’ll learn in tip number 4.

Tip Number 4: Leave your design flair for things that can be easily removed

Be careful when making design choices that might not appeal to those who will be eventually looking to buy your house.

LC: Designs that might be the “It-thing” can quickly be a defining feature that can instantly date a property even only a year down the track when a season changes and new on-trend designs appear.

Our advice is to stick to neutral colours and leave your design flair to things that can easily be removed like furniture and soft furnishings like rugs and décor.

This actually makes it a lot easier for those who are purely improving their property to sell and shows you don’t need to reinvent the wheel to make your property stand out. 

By sticking to what works, your property will appeal to a wider range of buyers.

Tip Number 5: Make sure you have a clean house when going to market

Of all the things you can do to add value Luke’s number one tip is to ensure your property is clean and tidy. 

LC: In our experience, cleanliness is the most cost-effective method of adding value to your home.

Everyone’s version of “clean” is different and it can sometimes be beneficial to engage the services of a professional house cleaning team to help you prepare for the sale.

They’ll know all the areas to focus on that are often overlooked.

While this is such a simple tip, you’d be amazed at how much value this simple step can add to your home when it comes time to sell. 

Recent trends that could help improve property value

Outside of the strategies and tips we provided above, being switched on to new trends and adapting your property to meet these recent demands is another strategy you can implement to improve the value of your property. 

Pet-friendly properties

If you have the opportunity to make your property more pet-friendly, you could find that buyers might be willing to pay more for a home that caters to this need.

LC: We are seeing a lot more emphasis on a property's suitability for pets.

Pets have always been loving family members but we are seeing more than ever people looking for a property with an area for their fur baby or properties located within walking distance to dog-friendly parks or beaches.

we have also seen a big push for townhouses over apartments with downsizers still wanting to retain a small courtyard for their pet.

Properties that don’t have wall-to-wall carpet, have space for pets to play, and don’t have any easy escape hazards etc… will be more appealing to this sector of the market. 

Resort-style outdoor areas

LC: When it comes to top-end houses we are definitely seeing a big trend of resort-style outdoor areas.

These generally contain complete outdoor kitchens and even outdoor bar areas where people can entertain at home in an environment that would rival a tropical holiday.

While this isn’t attainable for all properties, upgrading your current outdoor hosting area if your budget allows can still produce a positive ROI.

Creating privacy

While not so much a recent trend, creating privacy is a theme that isn’t discussed often enough when it comes to these topics.

One of the top things we see people looking for in any property is privacy.

People want privacy at all costs and it is the number one thing we see people looking for in all circumstances and property types.

Investments that help create privacy whether that’s through fencing, landscaping, privacy screens or curtains have the potential to increase the overall value of a property.

Again, if you want to know what option would work best in your local area, we recommend that you speak to your local property valuer

Get started maximising your property value today

Maximising your property's value involves strategic improvements and keeping up-to-date with current trends. 

Whether through additions or refining what's already there, the correct improvements can significantly impact your ROI. 

If you're on the Sunshine Coast and considering your property's potential, don't leave it to chance. 

Reach out to Harcourts Caloundra today for a professional property valuation

Unlock your home's true value with expert advice from our team and take the first step towards boosting your investment today.

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How much does it cost to sell a house in QLD?
BlogA House For Sale In Qld
How much does it cost to sell a house in QLD?

Are you looking to learn how much it costs to sell a house in QLD? 

Selling a property involves various expenses that can significantly impact how much you’ll pay by the time your house has sold.

Not preparing and budgeting for these can result in significant financial setbacks if you are relying on the capital of the sale in the short term.

At Harcourts Caloundra, we have over a decade of experience in the local real estate market and have a broad knowledge of the costs and other factors that can affect the final price.

Keep reading to find out the cost of selling a house in QLD to help prepare you for a successful and stress-free sale.

Key Costs Involved in Selling a House in QLD

Agent's Commission

One of the primary costs in the sale of your property is the real estate agent’s commission. 

This is typically a percentage of the sale price and varies based on several factors, including the property's location, the current market, and the services provided by the agent. 

In Queensland, the average commission in metro areas is between 2 - 2.5% while in regional areas it ranges on average between 2.5 - 3.5%. 

It’s important to remember that the cheapest option isn’t always the best. 

When selecting an agent, consider their local market knowledge, marketing expertise, and negotiation skills. 

These factors can significantly influence the outcome of your sale which can offset the cost of a higher commission.

Check out this table below to see how much you would pay at 2.5% commission.

House Price Agents Commission % Commission Cost
$500,000 2.5% 12,500
$750,000 2.5% 18,750
$1,000,000 2.5% 25,000
$1,250,000 2.5% 31,250
$1,500,000 2.5% 37,500
$1,750,000 2.5% 43,750
$2,000,000 2.5% 50,000

Marketing and Advertising Costs

Marketing costs for selling a property in Queensland can vary. 

These expenses typically range from $600 to $2000, depending on the chosen marketing plan and the duration of the marketing period. 

This includes:

  • Costs for listing the property on real estate websites
  • Print media
  • Social media
  • Signage
  • Creating brochures or flyers

Professional photography and videography, which are essential for showcasing the property, are also included in these marketing costs.

Auction Costs

Choosing to sell your property at auction is a strategic decision that often attracts more competitive bidding among buyers.

In Queensland, the fees for a qualified auctioneer generally range from approximately $400 to $1,000

This fee can vary based on the auctioneer's experience, reputation, and the specific services they provide. 

Your real estate agent should be able to recommend whether an auction is worth the investment based on the type of home you’re trying to sell.

Conveyancing and Legal Fees

Conveyancing involves the legal transfer of property ownership and is a crucial part of the selling process.

While the final cost will vary, conveyancer fees on average range between $600 and $1,300 in QLD.

The actual cost can vary depending on the complexity of the transaction and the conveyancer or solicitor you choose.
While it is legal to do your own conveyancing in QLD when selling your property, you’ll be legally liable for any obligations that weren’t met. 

Preparation and Staging Costs

If you want to maximise the appeal of your property, you should consider preparation and home staging. 

This involves styling and furnishing your home in a way that highlights its best features to potential buyers. 

In Queensland, professional home staging can cost anywhere from $2,000 to $10,000+ for higher-end properties.

The cost will vary based on the size of the property, the level of service provided, and the staging duration. 

While it's an additional expense, effective staging can significantly enhance the property's attractiveness, potentially leading to a quicker sale and a higher selling price.

Capital Gains Tax

When selling a house in Queensland, it's crucial to understand the potential implications of Capital Gains Tax (CGT). 

CGT is a tax on the profit made from the sale of property or an investment. 

Generally, if your property is your primary residence, you may be exempt from CGT. 

However, if the property is an investment, you may be liable to pay CGT on the profit made from the sale.

The amount of CGT can vary significantly depending on various factors such as:

  • The length of time you've owned the property 
  • Any capital improvements made
  • Your personal tax circumstances

It is advisable to consult with a tax professional to understand your specific obligations and potential CGT liabilities. 

This cost should be considered in the overall financial assessment of selling your property.

Mortgage Discharge Fees

If you have an existing mortgage on the property you're selling, mortgage discharge fees are charged by lenders to process the termination of your loan account. 

This fee covers the administrative tasks involved in closing the account, such as preparing and filing the necessary documents to remove the mortgage from the property title.

In Queensland, the mortgage discharge fees can vary depending on your lender but typically range from $200 to $400

It’s important to check with your financial institution for the exact amount you'll be charged. 

Factors that Can Alter the Cost of Selling a House in QLD

Market Conditions

The overall demand and supply in the real estate market can significantly impact costs. In a seller's market, where demand is high, houses may sell faster and for higher prices, potentially reducing marketing and holding costs.

Property Location

Urban properties in high-demand areas might attract lower agent commissions due to higher competition among agents, whereas rural or less sought-after areas may see higher commissions and marketing costs.

Property Type and Size

The nature of the property, whether it's a luxury home, a standard residential property, or a unique listing, can influence the selling strategy and costs. Larger properties or those with unique features may require more extensive marketing efforts.

Property Condition

Properties that are well-maintained or recently renovated may attract buyers more easily, reducing marketing and selling time. Conversely, properties needing repairs might require additional investment before listing.

Seasonal Factors

Selling during peak real estate seasons may result in faster sales due to higher market activity, potentially reducing holding costs. Conversely, off-peak seasons might require more extensive marketing efforts.

Take advantage of understanding the cost of selling a house in QLD

Now that you better understand the cost of selling a house in QLD, you can maximise your property's value while keeping expenses in check. 

Being aware of the key factors like agent fees, marketing costs, legal expenses, and the unique aspects of your property can help you make informed decisions throughout the selling process.

At Harcourts Caloundra, we are dedicated to providing our clients with expert advice and tailored strategies to ensure a successful and efficient sale.

If you’re based on the Sunshine Coast and looking to sell your property, request an appraisal today.

If have any questions or general enquiries, don’t hesitate to call us on (07) 5438 1177 to speak with our friendly team.

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Harcourts Facts
BlogOur Story Image8
Harcourts Facts

Harcourts has been in existence since 1888. Harcourts International Ltd is the largest real estate group in New Zealand and the fastest growing real estate group in Australasia, exceeding a record $32.4 billion NZD in sold property last year.

Harcourts International Ltd has expanded across the globe

Now boasting over 830 offices in 10 countries including New Zealand, Australia, Indonesia, Fiji, China, Hong Kong, Canada, United Arab Emirates, South Africa and USA.

Harcourts International Ltd has over 830 offices:

  • New Zealand: 190 offices
  • Australia: 382 offices
  • Indonesia: 35 offices
  • Fiji: 3 offices
  • China/Hong Kong: 41 offices
  • South Africa: 150 offices
  • United States of America: 34 offices
  • United Arab Emirates: 1 office
  • Canada: 1 office

Harcourts International Ltd has over 6,400 Sales Consultants:

  • NZ: 2,388
  • Australia: 1,477
  • Indonesia: 483
  • Fiji: 27
  • China/Hong Kong: 410
  • South Africa: 1,153
  • United States of America: 500
  • Canada: 9
  • Dubai: 6

Community Spirit

Harcourts International has its own charitable foundation – The Harcourts Foundation. Visit our Website.
Our Purpose: “To provide support that helps, grows, and enriches our communities.”

Technology

  • From our online presence, Harcourts properties receive a weekly average of 4 million views.
  • Harcourts has over 1,000 office and sales consultant websites.
  • Harcourts sends out over 65,750 email marketing pieces every day.

Training

The Harcourts Academy is a registered training organisation which allows students to attain national qualifications toward sales registration, property management and full agency licence. Visit Website.

Exclusive Representatives

Harcourts is the exclusive member of Luxury Property Selection in our market place – a unique and exceptional international marketing programme for luxury properties.

Luxury Property Selection combines a unique, lifestyle-search property website, an internationally distributed magazine, together with a selection of exceptional property marketing tools to showcase the very best in luxury and lifestyle property. For marketing elite property internationally, there is no better way to provide maximum exposure for your luxury properties. 

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