Go Green

Going GreenChange your old appliances into energy-efficient appliances (look for Energy Star logo).
Fix leaky plumbing
Change kitchen cabinetry to the ones made from natural and sustainable materials.
Choose energy efficient Energy Star labeled products when purchasing electronics.
Choose environmentally friendly flooring.
Installing solar panels.
Installing solar hot water heater.
Energy efficient heating & cooling system.

Making your home more green will pay off in more ways than one.  Your house value may go up, you will see lower utility bills, and some of these projects may be tax deductible (talk to your accountant for more info).

For more Going Green ideas check our Pinterest Board.

Home Staging

Home StagingStaging your home for a timely sell doesn’t have to be complicated or stressful, but it will take some elbow grease and time.

First, ask your Waller Agent for suggestions about accentuating your home’s positive points. In addition to knowing the overall impression your home needs to make, your real estate agent is in a unique position to know what local home features are in highest demand and what regional tastes prevail.

Next, go through each room of your house, clearing out clutter and removing personal items. Clean your house thoroughly, including carpets, furniture and window coverings.

If you’ve re-purposed some of the rooms in your house, such as using a formal dining room as an office or bedroom, return the room to its original purpose. Changing the use of a room can disturb the flow of your home and may end up confusing home buyers, making it difficult for them to envision living in your home.

Paint
Give your house a neutral palette that will appeal to home buyers and give your home a calm, welcoming feel. If your walls are painted a bold or bright color, consider painting them warm, light tones of tan, beige or gray. Those colors encourage home buyers to envision their own personal effects and furniture fitting nicely in your home with minimal work.

Kitchen
Keep only a few appliances on your counters and add in a simple bowl of colorful fruit to introduce interest and brightness to your new neutral palette. Replacing or refinishing outdated cabinets can make a significant difference in how your kitchen appears to buyers. Remember to update cabinet hardware, as well.

If your appliances are old, replace them with new appliances. Generally, home sellers who replace tired kitchen appliances regain their investment completely. Remember to remove drawings, photos and magnets from your refrigerator.

Dining Room
Remove any bold finishings or heavy accessories. Clear out clutter but dress your dining table with simple, inviting place settings. An uncomplicated centerpiece and updated light fixture can complete the tableau. Remove any oversized furniture that might make the room appear small such as a large china hutch or sideboard.

Living Rooms, Family Rooms and Bedrooms
Remove family photos and personal effects. Clear out collections, knickknacks, themed items and anything that makes your rooms appear too personal. Clear out excess furniture, keeping important light fixtures. Warm up the spaces and give them a splash of color with a few plants, a throw blanket and neutral artwork.

Bathrooms
Make every fixture in your bathroom sparkling clean. If tile grout is still discolored after cleaning, re-grout or use a grout stain. Use a few colorful hand towels, decorative jars or baskets as accents. Finally, organize your bathroom drawers, since home buyers will undoubtedly open them to get a feel for the storage capacity.

Check In
Once you’ve cleaned your home, removed personal items and layered in neutral accessories, have a friend walk through your house as if they were prospective buyers. Ask them to give you honest feedback about your home and use that information to maximize your home’s appeal.

Economical Enhancements

Door Knob SetYou don’t have to do major renovations to improve your home’s appearance. If you’re thinking of selling but don’t have a lot set aside for home improvement projects, there are plenty of cheaper ways to make your home more visually appealing. Here are some ideas for sprucing up your home on a budget:

  • Change doorknobs. New doorknobs can make a great impression on house guests or potential buyers. You can either replace them entirely or paint over your existing doorknobs with spray paint that’s made for use on metal surfaces.
  • Get new lighting. Buying a new lamp or having smaller fixtures installed can boost a room’s appearance by making it look better and providing more light for reading or performing other tasks.
  • Paint an interior door. Consider painting an interior door in a bold color to create visual interest. This brighter color can refresh any room and draw attention to certain features, such as a pantry.
  • Replace cabinet handles. Get rid of dull or tarnished cabinet handles in your kitchen or bathroom, and replace them with new ones. This simple task adds instant shine to these rooms, which happen to be the ones that are usually the most important for buyers.
  • Paint rooms. Painting is a cost-effective and quick way to improve any room’s appearance. For some rooms, all you’ll need is one can of paint. Choose a color that brings out a background tone in the room, or go with an accent wall in a bolder color to liven up the room.

Fixing a Small Garden

Small-garden-space-006Here are five ways to fix up a small yard:

  • Container gardening: If you don’t have space for flower beds, you don’t have to forego any type of vegetation in your yard. Set up smaller gardens in containers, so your yard is still filled with flowers and plants. To make it look even more impressive, go with a theme instead of having random plants or flowers around.
  • Focal point: Place a sculpture or other large decorative item in your yard to serve as a focal point. This helps you avoid cluttering up your yard with several smaller items and   makes a better impression on buyers.
  • Minimal furniture: Place furniture with a minimal design in your yard instead of having clunky furniture, which will make your yard look even smaller. Choose chairs or tables with thin metal frames rather than heavy wood frames, for example.
  • Side yard: Don’t forget to make use of your side yard, if you have one. Turn it into a gardening nook filled with your favorite flowers or a relaxation spot with a comfortable chair or bench.
  • Vertical space: Take advantage of vertical space to make your yard feel bigger. Put up hanging plants or planting columns instead of having several plants scattered around your yard

Lifestyle Properties


Castlemaine’s lifestyle properties continue to inspire interest for those seeking to leave the hustle and bustle of the city and live life in the slower lane.

If you are looking for a lifestyle property this home in Willy Milly Road might just be the place for you. Privately positioned on 7 acres of treed grounds, just a few minutes from Castlemaine, the Golf Course and Steiner school, this graceful weatherboard homestead has sweeping verandahs with wide Merbau timber decks and offers space and style for a growing family.

Check our website to see the broad range of Lifestyle properties we have listed.

 

Finger On The Pulse

Sold Campbell's CreekWhile many agents secure listings by quoting unrealistic prices Tom Robertson can be relied on to be honest and to come in with a figure that he knows that the market is prepared to pay. He has a track record for actually sealing deals and selling properties.

The executor dealing with the sale of this Clinker Brick home in Campbell’s Creek stuck to her guns and her mother’s wishes and, despite some unrealistic quotes from others, went to Wallers. She cannot speak highly enough of the business.

She was impressed by the diversity of their listings and the way they conduct business. She found Tom Robertson to be an ally and a mainstay though out what proved to be a complicated process. While Tom’s honesty stood out she was also thrilled that he was persistent, was an effective  problem solver, made himself available and always got back to her promptly when she made contact. She was also impressed with his network of contacts and his realistic marketing approach.

It was very evident that this was a sale which benefited from the executor and agent working in close liaison as a team.

 

Entry to Castlemaine

Gaffney Street

11 Gaffney Street has been given fresh life with a complete makeover. Now, priced at a little over $300,000 it might be just what those seeking to enter the Castlemaine market are looking for. This home could prove to be the perfect investment, but equally it is ideal for first home buyers. With a spacious yard, scope to extend and located close to all the services that Castlemaine offers, this home will appeal to a diverse range of people.

Don’t miss the opportunity! Check it out today!

Gaffney Street Castlemaine

A Consistent Theme

Richards-Road CastlemaineWhen talking to vendors who have chosen to sell with Waller Realty, and who have Tom Robertson as their agent, there is a consistent theme.

Clients are invariably saying that they chose Wallers because of the reputation the firm has gained in the area and that they are most impressed by the professional, genuine demeanour of Tom Robertson. The owners of this property in Richards Road were no exception. They echoed what others have been saying.

It becomes apparent that one of the things that stands out about the way Tom works is that he keeps his clients in the loop, follows up their phone calls and is caring and sensitive to their individual needs.

Given that selling one’s home is high up on the list of major stressors it is comforting to know that it can be a very positive experience and that clients are prepared to publicly say how satisfied they have been.

Artisan Country

Four Seasons fill the measure of the year;
There are four seasons in the mind of man:
He has his lusty Spring, when fancy clear
Takes in all beauty with an easy span:

Coopers Road Harcourt

When John Keats wrote the ‘Human Seasons’ he must have had residency in a place like 138 Coopers Road Harcourt. The natural beauty is beguiling, almost arcane and mysterious.To gain the full benefit of what this property offers is to live, as the current owners have done, perched on the lower slopes of Mount Alexander and watch, awe struck as the seasons each come, bringing their special touch to these fertile rolling hills.

A stunning feature of this property is the large granite outcrops strewn below the elevated house site and the garden that has flourished in the fertile Harcourt granitic soil. The house was built by the manager of the now permanently closed granite quarry which adjoined the property; the land on which the house is built originally formed part of the quarry title. Realising the potential of this beautiful site, the then quarry manager purchased five acres from the quarry owners and using the heavy quarry equipment available to him, moved and placed massive blocks of granite to form the garden steps and walls which form the framework of this garden. The present owners have added to this framework using cut granite blocks and granite rocks found on the property.

The current owners have worked imaginatively with the foundations which were laid in place and have meticulously transformed this place into their private Eden. This property is now ready for someone seeking the freedom of living in the country.

Vintage Cottage and Land For Development

cottage1

This unique property at 50 Hunter Street Castlemaine demands more than a cursory glance. It offers not only a fully renovated, historic cottage but a significant land parcel, with permits to build, that enjoys landscaped views across the adjacent, prized Buda house and garden.

The fully renovated, picturesque vintage cottage dates back to the 1860′s. During recent renovations old papers were found in the original cottage section of the home and original horizontal timber board that clad the inside of the cottage remain under the pasteboard walls.

But then there is more! There is the rather quirky repurposing, done by a previous owners, one of whom worked for the PMG (Post Master General). He added real interest to the property by re-purposing a number of the old red telephone boxes (the same as the television series of Doctor WHO), slate telephone box floor panels and telephone pole isulator beams, which can be identified in the shedding, side and back veranda areas.

Take More Than A Glance

Porcupine Flat

Porcupine Flat Entrance

As you sweep along the drive towards the home it is the grandeur of the light bush setting which captures the imagination.

Set on thirty acres of quintessential Australian bush land, 482 Bendigo Road, Maldon, evokes all the love Dorothy McKeller speaks of in her iconic poem, ‘My Country’.

Resting gently on the land, here at Porcupine Flat, this imaginative development offers a range of options for a diverse range of people seeking a rural lifestyle, while still being within striking distance of all that a regional city has to offer.

Influenced by their residency at Clifton Pugh’s Dunmoochin, the current owners have created a world that merits more than a quick glance. This has been a haven for inspired artists and collectors of art to cultivate creativity. This is an environment laden with inspiration.

Proud of what they have created here the owners hope is that the baton will be passed on and that another will, as they have done, take guardianship over this mystical world.

When Making A Move

Moving

Five best tips for moving house

  1. Stay organised. Staying organised can’t be emphasised enough when it comes to important moving tips for relocating. There is no amount of planning that can prepare you for unexpected issues that arise on your moving day, but you can prepare for a comfortable move by packing and organising your belongings in advance.Also, by taking an inventory of all possessions, scheduling your moving truck two weeks prior to your move and planning where your furniture will go in your new home.
  2. Gather packing supplies far in advance. There’s nothing worse than scrambling at the last minute for boxes, bubble wrap, and packing tape to pack up the last of your belongings.One of the most important moving tips to remember, is to gather new or used boxes, bubble wrap or butcher paper, packing tape, and a permanent marker 4 to 6 weeks prior to relocation.
  3. Label all boxes clearly. Make sure that all boxes are labelled clearly with their contents. You can take it a step further by using colour coding to organise where boxes will go in your new home.As an example, label all boxes in red for the kitchen, blue for bedrooms, and green for bathrooms. This will make it easy and efficient for movers to unload your belongings. So the quicker that your movers work, the chances are you will have to pay less in total moving expenses.
  4. Have extra cash on hand. It is wise to have extra cash on hand in case some type of minor emergency occurs.This could include for example plumbing issues in your new home, movers having to charge more than what was originally estimated, or having to stay in a hotel overnight while traveling. Be prepared by keeping extra cash with you throughout your house move.
  5. Don’t forget to plan for the first night in your new home. One of the most essential moving tips is to plan for the first night that you’ll spend in your new home.The odds are that you will spend all day and evening moving and unpacking, yet you definitely won’t be settled in completely by the time you’re ready to hit the hay.Set aside a box or suitcase to hold everything you will need for the first 24 hours of your move and label it clearly. This can include utensils for cooking, toiletries, a change of clothing and bedding so that you can sleep comfortably.

 

Peaceful Rural Setting

Munro Road Green Gully

Set amidst pristine bushland, this meticulously maintained country residence, at 49 Munro Road Green Gully, enjoys a privacy that so many yearn to escape to. With its beautiful gardens and gorgeous outdoor living and entertaining areas it is the place to bring your friends. Locals say that their friends are very happy to come to this part of the world. Here, in this part of the Central Goldfields, you are in close proximity to all those places Melbournians love to visit.

Moving to the Country? Rent or Buy?

rent-or-buy-diceIt probably goes without saying that relocating and purchasing a home are two things WAY up the list of “High Stress Activities”. If you go shopping and buy the wrong size shoes, a bad suit, or food your kids won’t eat, that’s not such a big deal.

Buy a home in the wrong area for you though, that is a big deal.

Ideally, if you are relocating and not familiar with the Central Goldfields it is possibly best that you rent first before you buy a home.

The benefits of renting first:

  • You get familiar with an area before making the home purchase plunge.
  • If you don’t like where you end up renting, you can rent somewhere else. Or at least drive around different areas at different times, watch listen and observe the local area and news – basically get a long term, in-depth feel of different areas.
  • Less initial cash outlay. Moving is expensive.
  • It is much easier to work out timing issues between leaving your existing home and relocating to your new one. Closings are delayed all the time.
  • Reduced stress.

The disadvantages of renting first:

  • You have to move multiple times. Let’s face it, moving sucks. Ever meet anyone that likes to move?
  • If you have children, unless you rent in the same school area you ultimately purchase in, then the kids may have to switch schools. Again.
  • You have to move multiple times.
  • Short term leases aren’t easy to find. You may be locked into a six month lease. Or more.
  • You have to move multiple times.

So answering the question posed is difficult. Ideally, you probably want to rent first. But we don’t live in an ideal world.

More on Renting or Buying

Preparing for Sale?

 

renovate-to-improve-your-home-value

When you’re planning on selling your home, factoring in time and money for renovation projects beforehand is essential. Fixing up your home can help raise its value and make it more attractive to buyers.

While you’re deciding what to do, keep these tips in mind on home renovations for selling purposes:

  • Focus on basic maintenance. While investing in a spruced up kitchen or bathroom can be a good way to boost your home’s value, buyers will want to see evidence that they’re purchasing a home that’s in good condition. Depending on the shape your home is in, this could mean getting a new roof, replacing your siding or investing in new windows that reduce drafts and provide more energy-efficiency.
  • Consider how much you’ll get back. The amount of money that you recoup on home improvement projects depends on what you have done, how much you spend, how soon you sell, the current housing market and the value of homes in your area. Weigh all of these factors carefully before determining which remodeling projects to undertake.
  • Choose projects with a high recoup rate. Adding a pool to your yard or a sunroom are pricey projects, and you won’t get as much of that money back as you might think when you sell. Instead of doing these flashier projects, fix up the kitchen and bathrooms, which are the rooms that most buyers tend to focus on the most when looking at homes for sale.
  • Hire reputable contractors. The quality of the work that’s done is a crucial factor in determining how much your home will sell for. Buyers won’t want to invest in a home that’s had shoddy remodeling work done.
  • Inside your home, begin by removing personal effects such as photos and memorabilia.  While these are the items that make your home yours, your goal is to create an environment that a potential buyer can envision as their own.
  • Clean everything inside and outside of your home and develop a plan to keep your house attractive during the sales process.  To help present the cleanest and brightest home, open the curtains and turn on the lights during open houses and when real estate agents are conducting showings.
  • Consider enhancing rooms with a fresh coat of paint and be sure to repair items that need attention.  While major remodels may not be necessary, broken items should be repaired.

Outside, consistently maintain a mowed lawn and consider planting seasonal flowers.  Also, trim hedges, trees and bushes.