Once you have agreed a realistic and achievable selling price the next thing you need to think about is making sure your house is prepared for viewers. It will not only make your house look better in the photographs online or on the brochure but can potentially add thousands of pounds to its value and speed up the selling process.
Declutter – but don’t depersonalise
Get rid of all the excess stuff that has accumulated in every nook and cranny. Find somewhere to store it but not just in a cupboard which explodes when you open the door.
Potential buyers need to be able to envisage and visualise what the property would look like if they were living there. Many people find this difficult, so make it easy for them to see all the fantastic living space you’re offering them and where their sofa can go, or that piece of furniture that has been handed down that they couldn’t dream of getting rid of.
Don’t make it look like a generic hotel; people don’t live in hotels, they spend a night or two, therefore a minimalistic approach is fine but in reality we have and need a lot more space so remember to point out all the storage space you have.
Consider removing any bulky furniture that makes the room feel small and replace it with smaller items. This can be difficult, but if possible it will show off the house better.
Try to keep it clean and tidy
Giving your walls a fresh lick of neutral paint will make your home seem lighter and bigger. It will be easier for the buyers to move in and use the rooms immediately than if the walls were still bright purple or lime green.
Make any minor repairs necessary – holes in walls, broken door knobs, cracked tiles, torn or threadbare carpets.
Clean everything until you can see your own reflection. Get rid of limescale, clean and repair tile grout, wax wooden floors, hang up fresh towels. This will make the place more appealing and allow viewers to imagine living there.
Get rid of any strange odours, especially pet odour. We know you adore your pets but not everyone is a pet lover and a strong smell of wet dog can immediately put a buyer off.
Tidy up the garden, cut bushes back, clean the patio furniture and cut the grass. While this doesn’t add much value to your home it makes it more likely to sell as people can visualise themselves using the garden.
Updating the kitchen doesn’t have to break the bank
The kitchen is without doubt the most valuable room in a house. It is worth the most per square foot and can make the difference when buyers are unsure.
Consider refacing your kitchen cupboards. Its surprising what a paint job can do. This is much cheaper than installing a complete new kitchen but is often as effective.
Upgrading kitchen counter tops can be expensive, but can transform a kitchen. It also helps to prevent a buyer trying to knock you down because it needs replacing.
Declutter the surfaces to give the impression of space. Those who love to cook want to see how much space they have to work!
Small touches can go a long way
Clean windows inside and out, and replace any broken light bulbs especially down lighters. Making the place feel light and airy makes rooms feel bigger and the property more attractive
Ensure that you have lamps on in any dark corners
Light a fire if you have one. Nothing better than a burning fire providing a source of heat and a feature to a room, this will make your home feel warm and inviting.
Plants and flowers are a great touch and bring colour, life and light to a room not to mention smelling wonderful and fresh. A fruit bowl on your kitchen counter is always a bonus.
Viewing the property
You should have chosen a good estate agent by now, so let them do your viewings. After all it’s their job to know what things to say, what to highlight and what to downplay.
If a buyer is really interested you can attend on second viewings. This will give you chance explain the finer details like how the boiler works or average running costs etc.
They should also be able to deal quickly and effectively when answering those tricky questions about the noisy neighbours.