Preparing Your Home For Sale
People tend not to buy bricks and mortar, but a 'home'. If a house doesn't 'feel' right it will be difficult to sell. The 'feel' of your house can be influenced by a host of individual factors. Here are a few hints to help you make your house feel like your viewers' new 'home':
- First impressions are vital. Ensure that the front garden is neat and tidy and that the front elevation of the house, at least, is well maintained - particularly the front door! A hanging basket by the front door is well worth the investment. Try to keep the lawn trimmed and the flowerbeds neat. In seasons of bad weather ensure the paths are clear of snow and ice. If possible, keep the driveway clear and gates open, leaving room to park and thus making your home inviting to the buyer.
- Tidy up! Clutter really does make a house look smaller. A tidy house has the feel of a much larger one. Think about any unnecessary furniture as well. If in doubt - get it out!
- Pay attention to the smells. Homebuyers use all their senses when getting the 'feel' of your home. Clean the curtains and carpets and give the whole place a good 'spring clean'. There's a lot of truth in the old adage of employing the aroma of freshly baked bread and a pot of fresh coffee. At least, use a little pot-pourri around the place. A couple of bunches of fresh fragrant flowers make a huge difference.
- Paperwork. In addition to preparation of the house itself, gather together a portfolio of paperwork that any serious potential buyer may very well want to see. Gas, electricity bills etc., plus any guarantees for damp proofing or other remedial work that have been undertaken.
- Repairs. Obviously we would not suggest a complete redecoration programme, if indeed this has not already been carried out. However, peeling wallpaper needs to be tidied, together with any damaged paintwork. Just give it a bit of thought, who knows, this may lead to a quicker sale or possibly a better price. Dripping taps and broken light bulbs - small items really, and you've probably been meaning to repair them for several weeks, well now's the time! Essentially, we want you buyer to feel that your house has been well cared for.
- Kitchen and Bathrooms. With kitchen and bathrooms we have found that sales can be concluded by the appearance of these two rooms. They need not be the most modern, but they must be clean and tidy. Keep on top of the washing up and ensure that the bathroom suite is tidy and bright. Stained sanitary ware is not a good selling point!
- Bedrooms. With bedrooms, please ensure that beds are made and keep all bedrooms as tidy as possible. By doing so, they will look more spacious and accommodating. Ensure that all washing is in the wash-basket!
- Storage Space. On storage space, buyers will almost certainly consider storage space as important, and will undoubtedly want to inspect the cupboards. Please ensure that the contents remain in place when the cupboard door is opened! Now is the time to discard any rubbish that you have been hoarding - you will be doing so when you move anyway.
- Stairs. A roller skate on the stairs could lose you a buyer, literally! Ensure that the stairways are kept clear at all times and that there are no loose edges of carpeting that could cause someone to trip.
- Music. Music does not sell property! Please ensure that the radio and TV are switched off during a viewing, these will only distract. Also, do not have too many people present. Potential buyers always feel like intruders and wish to respect your privacy. Try not to hurry them through the property.
- Silence. Silence speaks volumes, but be courteous and point out particular features of each room. Let the buyer inspect at their own pace; after all, this is a serious business and not a social call.
- Pets. If you have pets, it would be appropriate to enquire prior o the viewing whether or not your prospective buyer has an affection towards them! Otherwise ensure they are kept quiet or even out of the property when the buyer calls.
Whilst these tasks may seem something of a chore, they really will make a tremendous difference to the saleability of your house. Also, although the grand tour is fine, if your buyers seem interested then let them look round again on their own at leisure, they are making a big decision.
If you are being helpful and truthful a purchaser will quickly sense it. Mislead and their confidence will quickly evaporate.
Present your home as best you can but we understand that it is your home after all and it suits your requirements for the moment. Don't apologise for it - this may suggest problems that don't exist.
Good luck !
If you wish us to advise on any area of selling your property please click here and contact us or call 01253 796996.