Growing up, we were always told not to judge a book by its cover. However, when a prospective buyer arrives to view your home, they’ll most likely form a first impression based on how it looks externally.
If your driveway is covered in weeds and your garden is untidy, you could lose the sale the moment the buyers step out of their car. Starting from the outside and working inwards, here are our six top tips for preparing your home for a viewing. Don’t make buyers imagine how good it could be, show them.
Before arranging a viewing, many buyers will make a drive-by visit first. Make sure you keep the outside of your home looking tidy.
You might also want to consider giving your front door and window frames a fresh lick of paint. Depending on the season, pot plants or baskets can also make your home look more inviting and appealing.
- regularly mowing the lawn
- trimming any hedges
- removing weeds from flower beds and pathways
- maintaining the roof and gutters
Bathrooms and toilets
Bathrooms tend to look a little cluttered with toiletries, sponges, medication and makeup. Clear away these items and put out clean, dry, folded towels. All of your bath and shower fittings should be spotlessly clean. We’d also recommend opening windows to clear away any excess moisture and replacing any mouldy bath or shower sealants.
De-clutter your living areas. Any unnecessary clutter can make a room feel much smaller and it can make it harder for potential buyers to imagine living in your home. Highlight distinctive features, such as a fireplace, and let natural light flood in by opening any curtains or blinds. Whatever the season, open up the windows to let in some fresh air. During a viewing, be sure to turn off your TV or any music that might be distracting.
It’s key to mention here that you should never try to hide any serious damage, like damp or a leaking roof. Please read the articles on the Consumer Protection Act (CPA) and Patent and Latent Defects in the Property Power Magazine. In terms of the CPA, a buyer’s rights have increased tremendously, and in certain instances a seller may be held responsible for any defects, even after the home has been transferred to the new owner.
Be honest about your home’s defects when selling
There’s no such thing as a perfect property, and buyers know that as well as you do, so when selling your home, you should never give in to the temptation to conceal or be untruthful about any defects or drawbacks that you know about.
It might sound like a cliché, but freshly brewed coffee and baked bread are two of the most appealing aromas to be found in the kitchen. If you’re going to bake bread or some sweet treats, be sure to offer them to the buyers. Clean and polish all integrated appliances, surfaces, fittings, handles, cupboard fronts and appliances. Remove clutter from counter tops, and make sure the sinks and draining areas are free from any dishes. If you have pets, place the bowls out of sight.
Space and order
Potential buyers will want to see every room, so don’t think you can simply move any clutter into the kids’ room or the study. The kids’ room can look like a war zone at times. Pack any toys and clothes, including shoes, away in the cupboard. Remember though, that buyers will most likely peer inside the cupboards and the loft, so try to keep these spaces in order as well.
You love your pets, but potential buyers may not. We’d recommend asking a friend or neighbor to look after them during a viewing. Also, don’t forget to pick up any ‘mess’ made by your furry family members.
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