Spring is in the air, the Beast from the East has passed and it’s a great time now to put your property on the market.
The trees are coming into leaf, colour is returning to our gardens and the sun is shining most days. Pavement appeal is improving and properties start to look much more attractive along with the photos in Sales Agents windows, on line and in the brochures.
Here are some very useful hints and tips from local property experts; Richard Smailes, Partner at Feather Smailes Scales, Simon Myring, Owner at Myrings, Lucy Priestley, Senior Negotiator at Strutt and Parker and the team at Verity Frearson to help boost the chances of selling your property.
1. Make a Grand Entrance
People often work very hard on the inside of their house preparing for sale, particularly after a cold, dark and dreary winter, but neglect the outside. This is the first thing that any potential buyer sees so your property needs to have “kerb appeal”, so make sure all the paintwork is tidy, windows are clean and the property looks cared for from the outside. – Richard Smailes
Lucy Priestley advises home owners to always bring prospective buyers through the “Christmas entrance” on the first viewing, not the “supermarket entrance”. Many people prefer to use a back or side door on a day to day basis, but when it comes to viewings show potential buyers through the front door of the house so they experience the property in all its glory.
Tidy up and bin the junk mail. Clutter and takeaway flyers piled by the door, lobby or reception area do not make a good first impression and could put off potential buyers. – Simon Myring
2. Spring Clean
It is extremely important that the house smells fresh and looks spotless. – Richard Smailes
If there is a discoloured patch on the ceiling from an old leak which has since been fixed don’t leave it there to put off buyers – redecorate! – Lucy Priestley
Try to keep clutter tidied away for when the Photographer comes round but then again during viewings. You don’t want to show the house off at its best on the promotional photos and then disappoint viewers when they arrive and find the house looking completely different. – Verity Frearson
Make it easy and a good experience for buyers. Make sure the inside is clean and looks its best, do not leave this to the buyer’s imagination. Tidy away as much clutter as you can, make the beds and ensure the toilet seat is down! – Lucy Priestley
Buyers need to be able to imagine themselves living at the property, so try not to have too many personal effects on show – that being said, you still want it to look homely so try to avoid making it look too clinical either. – Verity Frearson
But…. don’t stop there… make sure the house is not only clean but smells clean too! Don’t smoke or cook foods with strong smells before viewings. Spring is a vibrant fragrant season so bring those fresh, floral aromas indoors, throw open the windows to air everything and have fresh flowers displayed throughout your home. – Simon Myring
A scented candle or two or a freshly brewed pot of coffee can also help make a property feel homely and welcoming. – Simon Myring
3. Make the most of your assets
If you are fortunate enough to own a property with a good plot of land, make sure that the photographs used to market the property show this off. Try and get photographs taken from a height which show the whole plot. This will give prospective buyers an idea of scale and of the beautiful views that come with the property. – Lucy Priestley
Don’t forget to show potential buyers your garden! Spring weather provides the perfect opportunity to showcase your garden or outdoor area. – Simon Myring
Also, if you have got parking, leave the space free for the buyer as this will add to the whole experience.
4. Remove all traces of furry friends
As a nation of pet lovers our pets are cherished members of our family but traces of pet hair, muddy paws, gnawed wood work and scratched soft furnishings will not help sell houses. It is also important to remember that many potential buyers are allergic to animal hair.
Richard Smailes suggests leaving pets with a trusted friend or neighbour, and thoroughly cleaning up any pet hair prior to a viewing.
5. Lights, camera, action…
With spring comes better weather, light and sunshine all of which will help boost the appeal of your home, so make the most of this time of year and open wide those curtains and pull up the blinds – Simon Myring
…..but even if it is a dull day – turn the lights on and create that light and bright spring feeling inside your home. – Richard Smailes
Trainee Solicitor Lily Lynch has been sharing expert property advice.