Buying and Selling – what I’ve learnt from The Property Brothers

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I have a confession. I am addicted to property shows. From Phil & Kirsty, Drew & Jonathan and Tarek & Christina, I am obsessed! My Sky + Box is full of them, and every day I get home I have at least a couple of episodes of “Buying and Selling” or “Flip or Flop” or something or other to watch (god bless series link).

Having moved from a one bedroom flat, to a three bedroom house, I have had a lot of decorating to do over the last couple of years, and I’ve loved it. Whilst I had my ideas lined up before I moved, I love getting inspiration from these shows, and maybe one day, if I’m rich enough, I’ll have an extension or loft conversion and I can put these ideas to use, but for now I just love watching them.

Who are The Property Brothers?

The Property Brothers are Drew & Jonathan Scott, a Canadian set of identical twins who have a whole range of property shows, each with a slightly different twist. My Dream Home follows them as Drew finds them a wreck of a house and then Jonathan oversees all the work and remodelling that is required. Forever Home (which doesn’t at this time air in the UK) has the brothers help people make their current home into their Forever Home by completing renovations where they are. The first show I ever saw of theirs though was Buying & Selling.

buying and selling

What is Buying & Selling?

Buying & Selling is a show hosted by the Scott twins, where each of the brother’s strengths is played upon. Drew is the real estate agent (although he can also be handy when required) whereas Jonathan is the contractor. They visit the family requiring a new home and tell them how much they can sell their home for in it’s current state. They then usually tell the twins that they need quite a lot more than that to move into their next or dream home. This is where Jonathan comes in. He tells them what they need to do to maximise the value from their current home and sets about drawing up plans. These almost always cost more than the families are expecting but without fail, it increases the value that they are able to get for their home, and they also always make back more than they spend at this point.

Why are you telling me this?

As mentioned, I moved house around 2 years ago. I lived in a flat, so there was nothing structurally I could have done with the property, but in hindsight, I didn’t maximise the space to appeal to buyers. I did a small declutter, but nothing major, and I did no decorating at all. I wrongly assumed that as I loved the flat for so many years as it was, that a buyer would come through the door and love it too. Whilst I did get a buyer, they gave the flat an entire makeover after getting in there. I wouldn’t have needed to have spent a lot, but a lick of paint or a clean of the carpets would have made a difference.

I guess what I’m saying is that when it comes to property, sometimes you need to spend money to make money. A family investing $10,000 are easily making $20-30,000 back on their investment, if not more. I know you won’t have the lovely Scott twins helping you, and I’m also not saying that you should spend the money on anything that takes your fancy, but if you are looking at selling your property, it might be worth doing a little bit of work and spending a little bit of money on it before you sell. You never know what it might mean to your selling price.

Not sure what’s needed? Speak to a local real estate agent or estate agent. They will be able to tell you what is popular in your area and what works (if any) they would recommend. Get several quotes before doing any work, and make sure the work is something which will allow you to make more money back on your investment. Try to stick to neutral designs and patterns which will appeal to the widest audience. Black radiators might be fashionable, but they might turn a lot of prospective buyers off. You want to appeal to the widest possible audience, and allow them to be able to see the property as move in ready, and that any design ideas they may have can be done, but down the line and not right away – moving home is stressful and expensive enough.

Ultimately, just because you are moving, and you won’t be benefiting from any improvements or changes to your home, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t consider making them!

 

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