Is there a ‘good’ time to sell your property? Is there even such a thing as the ‘right’ time to sell? In the property industry, every month can bring new challenges but here we take a look at why we think spring is the perfect time to put your house on the market.
Spring makes us all feel better! The sun is starting to have some warmth in it, making summer feel like it’s not too far away and, with days getting longer, there are more potential daylight hours for house viewing. With gardens bursting into new life at the same time, the kerb appeal of properties is at a high, giving prospective buyers a great first impression. So, never underestimate the effect of sunshine on buyers and homes. The sun streaming into a house will bring it to life and there’s no doubt that people are much more likely to want to take part in viewings in good weather.
Springtime is a great time to put your home on the market too if it can be marketed towards young families. For families with school-age children who are house hunting, finding a property in the springtime means they have a really strong chance to exchange, complete AND move before the new academic year begins in September, giving them the time to settle their children in a new area before starting a new school.
Of course, an increase in the number of properties on the market means you will be up against the greatest number of competing sellers. But don’t despair! Read on for some simple ways to show your house at its best; some are quick, easy fixes and others need a bit more time and money but, all will give you the edge over other sellers when trying to attract the best buyer, and make your property stand out.
Buyers want to view your house and see themselves living there. So, if your windowsills are covered in personal photographs, think about removing some. You don’t have to remove all traces of your family and friends but let people see the surfaces and they’ll be able to picture their own trinkets in residence. Additionally, if you have a lot of furniture, occasional tables for instance, or perhaps a room with too many chairs, remove some. Staging your home will give you the best chance of a sale so if you have somewhere to store your overflow pieces until after completion, do it now. It’s good to do the same in the kitchen – clear worktops of unnecessary equipment. Put the toaster away, and make sure all pots, pans and condiments are in cupboards. Tidy the top of the fridge and consider whether you really need a hundred fridge magnets on display.
Clean the house
This may seem obvious but it’s surprising how many people leave dirty dishes in the sink or on the kitchen worktops. And put dirty laundry out of sight, removing laundry baskets if possible and making sure there are no smalls on the rads! It’s worth getting carpets professionally cleaned once you know you will be having viewings. If this isn’t practical then at least put the vacuum round before each appointment – a dirty carpet covered in crumbs, or worse pet hair, will put buyers off straightaway. Give your windows a clean too; dirty windows will make the whole house feel dark and grubby, and if you have net curtains, make sure they are clean and uncreased.
The belief that the smell of freshly ground coffee or home baked bread will sell your home may have held water in the 80s but today, such polarising aromas can do the opposite. As will strongly scented candles and plug-in air fresheners. The best scent for a home is fresh air so open windows on a dry day, fill a fruit bowl with oranges and lemons and, most importantly, if you are a household of smokers, refrain from lighting up indoors on the day of a viewing and empty ashtrays and put them away. The smell of stale tobacco clings to carpets, curtains and soft furnishings and no buyer wants to be viewing the Rovers Return! Although we are a nation of pet owners, put your animals outside too when showing people round. Your buyers may not be a fan of your furry friends and Fido may take exception to strangers in his territory.
This takes a little time and money but if your house has a strong colour palette, it’s worth considering painting over in neutral shades. The majority of house hunters will be unable to see beyond the colour of your walls and this could cost you the sale, so you need to help them see what your home could look like when they are the occupants.
Carry out repairs
If viewers come into your home and see repair jobs that need to be done, that will automatically add ££ to the price they are paying in their head. This will lead either to a lost sale or a reduced offer. So, carry out any repairs ahead of viewings, such as replacing cracked tiles or repairing broken fences or gates.
Dress your home for each viewing
And lastly, prepare a go-to box of accessories you can quickly put out ahead of each viewing. Very few of us have co-ordinating towels so keep a laundered set of matching towels to hand that can be substituted for the My Little Mermaid or Liverpool FC bath sheets that you use usually. Keep a new sofa throw and matching cushions at the ready too and clean tea towels that can be whipped out at short notice. If you don’t have matching bedlinen all the time, invest in a bed throw that will cover up mismatched linen in a heartbeat. All little things maybe, which will hardly even be noticed on a conscious level but that will surely register with your viewer subliminally.
If in doubt about your preparations, ask friends and family to cast a critical eye over your home but, if you think impartiality or objectivity will be hard for them, ask your estate agent. At Love Homes, we know what sells houses and we will always be happy to advise how to showcase your property in the best way possible.
So, now your house is clean, tidy, uncluttered and smelling beautiful, what are you waiting for? For a free valuation, call us today on 01995 213101 and let us get you moving!