The new year throws up challenges, not least of which is making your new year resolutions. I confess, I’m a bit slack about making personal resolutions but I do take the time in January to make a few plans for the year so I’m prepared for almost anything.

The new year is often a time to start thinking about how you want to live, and where. If the idea of preparing your home for sale is overwhelming, here are a few tips to plan and give yourself a year so you don’t need to do everything at once.

12 months to Day Zero

Engage a real estate agent

We suggest you do this first as your real estate agent will help you identify what you need to do to give your home maximum appeal to potential buyers.

Identify maintenance issues

Take a walk around your home and make a list of everything that needs fixing, from dripping taps to discoloured grout or kitchen drawers that stick. You might decide at this point that you need to do some renovations. Remember to talk to us first as we know what appeals to buyers and we can save you spending money unnecessarily

Select a renovations or maintenance crew

It can take some time to choose the right team for the job so the earlier you start your search, the better.

Review your garden

Is it drought proof and low maintenance? Do you need to returf the lawn? Garden work is best done as soon as possible to give any new plants time to settle

8 months to Day Zero


It’s a great time to start this job as you can do it in easy stages. Make piles for Keep, Not sure, Go and leave a box by your usual entrance so you can drop donations and take them to a charity shop when the box is full.

Top tip: Photograph everything before you start to preserve your memories.

4 months to Day Zero

Undertake minor renovations

You’re in luck. If you’ve decided on minor renovations, you have time to get a team in to fix all those “I’ll get around to it later” jobs. You have time to give your kitchen, bathroom and laundry a makeover. Just remember to keep renovations simple.

Check your kerb appeal

Take a look at your front yard from a buyer’s point of view. How’s your letterbox looking? Is your house number visible and easy to see from the road? Does your front door look welcoming? You have time now to remedy any shortcomings.

3 months to Day Zero

Purge the paperwork

Get all your paperwork out and see what you must keep and what can be discarded. If you’re tech savvy, visit your local library and scan whatever is left that you must keep.

Interview home stylists

If you chose to style your home, it’s good to engage a professional to help you.

Start searching for your new home (and talk to your real estate agent to help you).

2 months to Day Zero


Give your home (inside and out) a deep clean. We generally recommend that you pay professionals to do this as it can be exhausting (plus professionals have all the good tools like pressure washers).

1 week to Day Zero


Have your home styled, ready for your first open-for-inspection day and the photography.

Day zero: It’s showtime!

Can we help with advice on downsizing?

Having navigated the home sale and downsizing process not only for our real estate clients but also for members of our own family, it’s an area in which we’ve amassed a wealth of knowledge. So don’t hesitate to seek out our help – no obligations.

Free downsizers guide

Michael & Rhiff Larkings

As a specialist team, focused on Caringbah South and the surrounding suburbs, we've been providing real estate services for over 20 years. With numerous real estate awards to our name, we're in the top echelon of licensed real estate agents in the Sutherland Shire. We regularly set new street, suburb and area sales records. Most importantly, we understand that real estate is a ‘people’ business where the development of relationships and trust, with both our clients and purchasers, is vital to achieving your all-important sales result.

Get in touch

Discover what your home or investment property is worth in the current real estate market. Whether you are looking for advice about a future sale or seeking out your ideal home, our team are on hand to assist.


Suites 4 & 5, 305 Kingsway,
Caringbah 2229 NSW Australia