Preparing a house for sale – Top tips for getting your home ready to sell
October 12, 2020 | Michael Whittaker
By preparing a house for sale, you can make a real difference to the saleabilty and therefore the value of your home by taking a few steps and getting your house ready to sell before you go to market. Getting your house ready to sell will help create the best possible first impression for your home inside and out, increasing your chance of achieving the best price. Within this article you will find all of our top tips for getting a house ready to sell.
Poor or inadequate lighting can give a bad first impression of your home, which may well be undeserved. A darker room will feel smaller, and may lead buyers to think that the property is dark in general even if it benefits from great natural light (remember not all of your viewings will be during the day). If you light your rooms well, you can use it to your advantage, highlighting key areas.
When preparing a house for sale, take a critical look in each room of your home, with all curtains and blinds open to asses which have a good amount of natural light and which don’t. It can be a good idea to ask a friend to help with this, as you may be used to the usual level of light in the room. Ensure you try this at different times of the day, not just the brightest!
For the rooms which are a bit darker, consider employing stronger bulbs, or additional floor lamps. However bright the room, always ensure all blinds and curtains are open for any viewings.
Another technique in the case of darker (or smaller) rooms can be to increase the numbers of mirrors, as these will reflect light and give a greater feeling of space.
For the front of the house, effective lighting will increase the kerb appeal and give more of an impression of security at night. Lighting pathways and any other features in your front and rear garden will give a great first impression and invite the viewer to take a proper look around even during a night time viewing.
Decluttering will make your home seem bigger, and make it easier for buyers to see its advantages. Getting rid of your possessions may be difficult at first, but is worth persevering when preparing a house for sale to create a great first impression
Sell, donate, or throw away as much as possible, especially if you haven’t used
something for a long time and don’t think you will need it in your next home.
There is also the option of renting a storage unit in the short term for bulkier items of furniture you would like to keep. You should more than recoup the cost of this in your selling price.
Once you have done this, take a look at all of your cupboards and storage spaces, and get rid of some more items, Storage is very important for buyers, and they will assume
that if your cupboards are overflowing there isn’t enough storage
If you have changed the usage of any of your rooms, i.e. 2nd bedroom to office, then change it back to a functioning bedroom. Perceived value of rooms varies amongst buyers, in this example a bedroom is certainly worth more than an office.
Redecorate and repair
Other tips for getting a house ready to sell involve the internal condition of your home and its fittings. If buyers see things that don’t work properly or are broken they will probably assume that you haven’t spent the correct amount of time maintaining your home and that this may lead to expense further down the line.
Even if this doesn’t stop the buyers offering on your home it will more than likely lead to a lower offer, as they will factor in the cost of making the repairs themselves and then add a bit on for the inconvenience.
Some things to check through;
All kitchen appliances
Boiler and radiators
Showers, taps and water pressure
Windows and patio/ balcony doors. Do they all open easily and any keys are
Creaking floor boards, squeaky doors and loose handles for doors
In terms of redecoration, neutral colours are the way to go. Not only will this make your home appear brighter and more spacious, it makes it very easy for any incoming buyer to redecorate in the colours they like. If after redecorating you realise that any curtains, paintings or furniture look out of place or clash with your new (neutral) colour scheme, it is best to move these items out in to storage, sell or give away.
Freshly painted interiors can give a simple, brand new feel that allows buyers to visualise your property as their own home. It is important not to minimise that effect by keeping tired or out of place fittings.
If you are fortunate enough to have a garden, or even a balcony space, then this is one of the most important features of your home and must be shown to its full potential, without fail. When preparing a home for sale, pay particular attention to these points to really give your outside space the wow factor.
Lawns, decking and paving
Ensure all lawns are mowed, neat and tidy at the front and rear of the property. This
adds to the kerb appeal and gives the buyer the impression that your garden is
regularly used. If you live in a conversion or modern building with a communal garden, then a clean and tidy lawn also shows the garden is usable, which isn’t always the case with communal gardens. If your garden features paving or decking, pressure wash if needed to get it looking its best. Repair any damage to decking and consider re-varnishing if needed.
Decluttering your garden when preparing a house for sale is as important as decluttering your interior. Take a good look at your garden furniture, and if you have too much, any is damaged or looks old and worn then get rid or put in to storage. If you don’t currently have any garden furniture at all then it is worth buying or borrowing some. The garden or outside space will add the most value if buyers can see how it would be used by them, and even a table and chairs can create the vision of sitting outside on a summers evening. This applies to balconies and terraces just as much as gardens, whatever the size.
Take a critical look at any fencing in your garden and make any repairs necessary. Any
broken panels or fixings can give the impression that more repairs will be needed in
the near future, and as with internal repairs buyers will mentally discount this from the amount they offer. If you have recently replaced panels, ensure they are treated or
stained to match the others. Even if a particular section of a fence is a neighbors
responsibility then it can still create a poor first impression.
Although bins are clearly an essential item for everyday use, not many things can ruin
your your kerb appeal faster than bins in your front garden. If possible keep bins in a
storage area (or create one if you don’t already have), to the side or rear of the house, or in the garage if you have one.
London Youth work to improve the lives of young people in London, challenging them to become the best they can, and last year helped over 27,000 young people through their sports development, youth action and involvement, arts and outdoor education programmes and employment prospects. We feel strongly that all young people should have an opportunity to develop themselves, and so are delighted to be able to support London Youth in their work, providing young people with access to opportunities they might not otherwise have had, to learn new skills, to make a positive change in their communities and to shape the city they live in.
Glass Door helps homeless men and women in London through their large network of emergency shelters and support services. These winter shelters provide a warm welcome, food, safety and shelter for up to 170 people every night. Properly feels passionately about the issue of homelessness. That is why we are delighted that together with our clients we can assist Glass Door in their fantastic work to help some of the most marginalised people in society.
Families become homeless for reasons we can all identify with. We are concerned about people who are struggling to keep things together in our fast-paced world – and we care about those who have no support. We chose the Doorstep Homeless Family Project because they are passionate and effective yet they are a small team with limited funding. They provide homeless families, living in temporary accommodation in London, with access to services to secure the emotional and practical support they require to enjoy a better quality of life.
We need nature and nature needs us. We support The London Wildlife Trust because we share its concern for the environment. We want to ensure that we keep nature in mind as we work in the property market – and crucially, with people’s homes. We also want our employees to engage with nature and benefit from the wellbeing this brings. London Wildlife Trust cares for over 37 of London’s spaces, and their vision is: “a London alive with nature, where everyone can experience and enjoy wildlife”.
Mariel helped me sell my apartment in West London. She was always there when I needed her. Her advice was invaluable and made everything a whole lot easier. I can’t recommend her highly enough.
We had the opportunity to interact with Michael of Properly in our search for a new rental flat. Michael was professional and courteous in our dealings with him. He was a pleasure to interact with and he frankly stood out amongst all the agents we interacted with over a search of several weeks.
The level of customer service I received at Properly with Mariel and her team was frankly outstanding. It’s lovely when people genuinely care and go the extra mile which certainly they did. I couldn’t recommend them more highly, the most pleasurable property experience ever for me.
I was very impressed with the service I received. Communication throughout was very good. I have dealt with many agents, but the clear, concise and personable approach I received made Properly stand out. I wouldn’t hesitate to use them again.
Amazing people, responsive, honest, friendly and professional. Cannot fault them and the type of company, you will go back to again and again.
Mariel and Michael have been absolutely great, by far my best ever experience with a letting agent. Properly is honest, upfront and friendly, responding really quickly to any and all queries and with a lovely personal touch.
Had Michael round for a valuation of our flat – very knowledgeable and friendly and wasn’t pushy at all. When it comes time to sell we’ll definitely be giving Properly a call!
The service is outstanding. Mariel could not be more helpful and professional. Every individual I engaged with, was well informed and had the full history of conversations. First class service.