June is a busy month for the property market and as sales gather pace, the increase in competition means that well-presented properties attract more viewers, sell more quickly and achieve the best possible price. Being able to see your property through the eyes of a potential buyer is the key to successful staging. Presenting property to reflect an aspirational lifestyle is the reason show home properties are so appealing and injecting a little show home style into your own home will greatly increase its saleability. This short guide offers practical advice on how to present your most valuable asset for sale.
Kerb appeal is essential: this is your first impression and buyers often check out a property initially with a drive by, and if they don’t like what they see, they won’t book a viewing. If the outside is in a poor state of repair they will expect the inside to be the same. So –
Tidy the garden and power wash any paving.
Cut back overgrown shrubs and paint weathered fencing.
Clean window sills and add pots of seasonal plants near the front door.
Buyers often want a house that needs little work
Unless they are a property investor looking to make a low offer, a property requiring repairs can be enough to put a prospective buyer off.
Deal with any maintenance issues (dripping taps, broken tiles, cracks in plaster etc.) prior to going on the market. Bear in mind that some house sales often fall through at the point of survey so be proactive and deal with any problems that may show up on a survey. Remember to keep any invoices for maintenance works.
This is a major factor for any buyer. We see other people’s dirt far more easily than our own and it is off-putting. Make sure everywhere sparkles particularly kitchens, bathrooms and windows.
Deal with clutter
We all collect it and we all live with, it but when it comes to selling your property, potential buyers don’t want to see it. Clutter makes rooms appear smaller and the majority of people can’t see beyond it; present a buyer with a cluttered room and that’s what they think they are buying.
Appropriate lighting to the location is essential. High wattage bulbs in hallways and on staircases create a feeling of space, whilst different light sources such as standard lamps and table lamps create atmosphere.
A great way of reflecting natural light, increasing the feeling of space and creating interesting vignettes.
Room by room
This room needs to be inviting and relaxing. Choose an architectural focal point such as the fireplace and arrange the furniture around it.
Dining room/Eating area
Even if you do not have a dedicated dining room, try to create an eating area in the kitchen or at one end of a large living area which exudes a sense of style.
This room is vital to the sale and must give the impression of quality and style; think 5 star hotel! Crisp bed linen and large pillows can be bought relatively inexpensively. Consider accessories carefully and remove clutter.
Make them as tidy as possible. Major changes are not always necessary but making an effort to ‘de-personalise’ these rooms by removing large posters and toning down bold colours will make a huge difference.
Hotel chic is the key here – fluffy towels and stylish accessories. Changing bath panels and taps are a cost-effective way of achieving an instant face-lift. On viewing days remove excess toiletries and personal items.
This is the all-important room so it’s vital to get it right – shining and clutter-free. A bowl of fresh fruit, a vase of flowers and some stylish accessories would be welcome additions.
Preparing for viewings:
Present both your home and yourself well.
Open windows and let in some fresh air.
Ensure the outside and hallway is clean, bright and welcoming.
Open blinds & curtains to let in natural light.
Switch on internal lights for ambience.
Check that any plants, flowers and fruit bowls are fresh and attractively arranged.
Kitchens and bathrooms should be spotless.
Make beds and pick up any clothing and daily clutter.
Plump up cushions, pillows and arrange throws.
Leave pets outside and clean up any pet hair.
Remember that when it comes to accessories ‘less is more’.
Try to leave a parking space for the viewer.
So good luck! The constant ebb and flow of the housing market means you can never be sure how quickly your property will sell, but these top tips will give your home the best possible chance of being snapped up, ensuring a smoother and altogether more enjoyable selling process. If, however, preparing your property to go on the market seems a daunting task and some practical assistance wouldn’t go amiss, contact Gill at GMW Interiors who will be delighted to help you.
Guest blog kindly provided by Gill Wilkinson from GMW Interiors in Richmond, North Yorkshire.