Should you renovate before you sell?


If you’re set to sell your Rockhampton property, you may be wondering if you should renovate it beforehand. The truth is there are arguments for and against, and it depends on how much time you have and what kind of outcome you want. 


Here are the benefits of renovating your Rockhampton home before you sell and the traps to avoid.

Why renovate before you sell?


Beautiful, modern homes that make sense for families and look great will always sell for a higher price. The more ‘move in ready’ a place is, the more interest it will receive from buyers. 


With this in mind, if you decide to renovate before you sell, you have the option of 

doing a complete overhaul or some minor touch-ups.

Complete overhaul


If you have an older home in a sought-after location, it has the potential to deliver good returns if you invest in a full renovation. Think of the ‘worst house on the best street’ scenario; bringing the house into line with the neighbouring properties can definitely be a good strategy for capital growth. 


Here are a few things to keep in mind if you want to complete a major renovation before you sell:


  • Don’t neglect the outdoors: Buyers love gardens that look fresh, lush and easy to manage. You can keep it simple, lay a nice green lawn and end up with an extra selling point. 


  • Think about the buyer: Are you doing up a family home to sell? If so, is there room for a home office and an extra bathroom? Is there a nice flow through the living areas and will the parents have some privacy? These are key features to attract interest in Rockhampton at the moment. 


  • Optimise the ground level: Rockhampton residents love renovated and updated Queenslanders. If you are selling this type of home, converting the under-house space for living is an excellent way to add value. Consider a guest bedroom and/or rumpus room, and see if you can connect upstairs and downstairs with an internal staircase. 


  • Get approval: Don’t make any changes without going through the correct channels for council approval. Potential home-buyers are likely to have a property inspection done and if the results show unauthorised renovations, they will drop their offer.


  • Consider time and budget: While the idea is to get top dollar, you may lose potential profit if you spend too much money renovating. Talk to an agent about the selling price you’re likely to achieve and be mindful of this. You also need to be aware that renovating always takes longer than you think it will! 

Minor upgrades


In the current market, most buyers are looking for homes that are ready to be lived in. Whatever you can do to make your home more immediately liveable will instantly increase its appeal to buyers.


Cosmetic upgrades often make more sense than full renovation projects, especially if the house has good ‘bones’. Upgrades can come in the form of:


- Sanding and painting the walls, ceiling, doors and skirting boards

- Painting over dark wood architraves (lighter colours are more in fashion these days)

- New cupboards and cabinet doors

- Fresh fixtures like taps and light switches

- A thorough clean

- Decluttering and depersonalising

- Laying fresh turf in the garden

- Fix minor issues like leaks and cracks

- New floors or sanded and polished floors

- Seal any gaps

- Highlight and/or repair any heritage features 


Buyers tend to look at kitchens and bathrooms, with the idea that other fixes are more straightforward, so if you only have a limited budget, try to focus on these areas.

Sell without renovating?


Rockhampton is a popular area for buyers and investors at the moment and most homes are selling relatively quickly. If you decide to sell without investing in repairs and upgrades, it may be because you don’t have the time to make changes and your budget is very limited. In this case, you’ll still get interest from buyers but be aware that they will factor in the cost of repairs and upgrades when making their offer. 


You can always talk to our team about the price we believe you can achieve, then base your decision on whether to renovate or not on how this aligns with your goals. 

Need some advice before you sell in Rockhampton?


2024 is set to be a big and busy year on the property market, with quality homes in high demand. If you’re thinking about selling, get in touch today


Todd Brandon
Operating with unparalleled insight into market trends, sales agent and team leader Todd Brandon services the Southside and Gracemere districts with a level of knowledge only a long-time resident can provide.