What do renovators and first home buyers want?

Many people would argue that home buyers have a similar wish list when it comes to buying a home, regardless of whether they are single, a professional couple, a young family or a retiree.

Couple looking at houses in newspaper
  • 25 May, 2018
  • First home buyers, Renovators, property

And whilst we agree that all buyers put price at the top of their list and prioritise location, there are other specific features that first home buyers and those looking to buy a do-up property search for that differ from other buyer groups.

As a seller, knowing what your target buyer is looking for can help you ensure you promote the relevant key features of your property to ensure you attract the most number of buyers and achieve the best possible sales price.

To find out exactly what different buyers prioritise we reached out to some of our most experienced agents who live and breathe real estate and asked them what first home buyers and buyers looking for a do-up search for.  Here is a snapshot of their responses.

Selling a do-up - what do buyers look for?

Buyers looking to buy a property to renovate will look at a number of key factors.  Obviously, the area, neighbours and the bones of the property are a major consideration.  They will also look for features such as hardwood floors hidden under old carpet, the size of the land the house sits on and if there is potential to extend the home, the natural light entering the home, and whether or not this can this be easily rectified.

Buyers looking for a forever home will be more emotional about the buy and if planning to take time to renovate may be prepared to spend more on the property and overlook some of the issues the property has.  

A buyer looking to renovate and flip a property will be looking for a bargain and will look more closely at the hidden expenses and major items that will eat into their budget and need attention first like foundations, roof, electrical and plumbing.

If selling a do-up the Vendor is best to the leave the property untouched apart from a good clean of the interior of the home, removal of any unwanted items or anything potentially hazardous from the site.  A good tidy up of the gardens and exterior of the property including the removal of old piles of timber etc. would also be advised.  

Selling to first home buyers - what do they want?

It goes without saying that first home buyers are focused on properties with a good location, that have easy access to public transport or motorways, are in a low crime rate area, have good internet coverage, have decent sized bedrooms and fresh bathroom/s and kitchen. But what else do they look for?

First home buyers often look for a property that is new, so they can utilise the KiwiSaver HomeStart grant. For building or purchasing a new home, or for purchasing land to build a new home on, the grant is, in effect doubled to, $2,000 per year of membership in the scheme, up to a maximum of $10,000 for five years for each member.

Even if the property isn’t new, first home buyers generally still don’t want to do any work to the property, they just want to move in and enjoy living there.  Some first home buyers prefer properties with open plan living and a separate theatre room, as opposed to formal living areas. But it all comes down to budget.
For sellers who are trying to attract first home buyers make sure you declutter your homes, tidy up the garden and make them look like they are easy to care for.  You want this buyer group to feel the property is spacious and low maintenance.
One last tip, first home buyers often have good cars and ideally want parking within the property.  This does vary across the country and where people are looking to buy, but if you have a garage make sure you promote this feature as it is very appealing.

LJ Hooker NZ

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