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A UK Homeowners Guide To The Options Available To Them To Sell Their Property Quickly In The UK.

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How To Sell Any UK Property Fast

Instant Curb Appeal-Love at First Sight

First impressions really count. Many interested buyers who have expressed an interest in viewing a property will often decide to drive past a house before a viewing. If they decide they don’t like the appearance from the outside they may change their opinion of the house and not attend the viewing. Sadly they will often neglect to ask the agent to cancel the appointment. This results in wasted time and frustration for both you and your agent.

In order to make sure that every aspect of a house looks its best you should aim to do the following. Regularly remove any weeds that are growing outside your house or on the drive. Pick up any litter outside your house or in the street, keep rubbish bins out of sight and ensure all paintwork on walls/fences etc have been freshened up. If you have multiple vehicles and only a small driveway/space outside, park your car/s elsewhere during viewings so buyers can fully appreciate your property and what it has to offer.

It is also important that buyers can locate your property so make sure your estate agent is aware of any directions a buyer will require to find the property. Ensure that you have your house number or name clearly visible and that you have the for sale board somewhere noticeable.

Gardens

Keep lawns tidy and regularly cut the grass. Ensure any plants/borders are regularly tended. If you have storage/a shed use it to keep garden equipment/toys/bikes out of sight.

Remove any loose bricks/debris/litter that may be present and ensure any garden gates are fully operational/freshly painted/cleaned. This allows buyers to view your garden as a low-maintenance and attractive outside space they can imagine themselves enjoying with family and friends.

In gardens that are mainly laid to lawn try providing a few inexpensive hanging baskets of flowers/feature plant pots and solar lighting to add interest. If you are fortunate enough to have a garden with a patio area or decking you should make the most of the space and where possible stage a seating area. Homeware stores offer reasonably priced patio or bistro sets that are functional and attractive and encourage buyers to view your garden almost as another useable room.  

General Household Repairs/Maintenance

If there are any minor repairs that your property requires make sure that you get these fixed. If a buyer sees cracked glass, damaged doors/missing skirting, cracks in walls/ceilings, damaged/missing fixtures and fittings than this can be very off-putting. Though these repairs may seem minimal, they can suggest to the buyer that the property as a whole has not been well maintained. This can make a buyer worry about other more costly hidden repairs and prevent them from considering your property as a good investment.

Atmosphere

Providing a welcoming atmosphere is essential in establishing a positive reaction from a buyer right from the start. Key things to consider are the following:

  • Ensure that rooms provide adequate lighting especially during evening viewings so check all light bulbs are working. Mirrors can be used effectively to reflect light and make areas without windows appear brighter. If viewings are during the day ensure that all curtains and blinds are open.
  • Use scented candles, fresh flowers, pot pourri, plug-in room fresheners or diffusers to make the property smell inviting and clean. This is especially important if a property has pets since animals can often leave your home with an undesirable odour. Wherever appropriate we recommend removing pets during viewings so nervous buyers can completely relax. Weather permitting you should also open your windows to allow fresh air into the rooms.
  • If you know that there are times that the noise levels in the neighbourhood or your home will be higher, try to avoid booking viewings during these periods. During viewings it is recommended to turn down the volume on your television or ideally switch it off completely so a buyer feels comfortable to ask questions. If you know that you have young children who may disrupt viewings arrange the viewings when you can make arrangements for their care.
  • Think about providing a comfortable viewing environment for your buyers. If you are selling during the winter have the central heating on to show how warm and cosy the house is. If you are fortunate enough to have a feature fire or log-burner make sure to use it. If viewings are during the summer, open the windows to allow buyers fresh air and if you have AC or ceiling fans you may want to use thess to ensure the buyers can view your home comfortably.

Décor

Most buyers are looking for neutral colour schemes with colour used only as an accent. Therefore it is recommended to stick to magnolia, cream, white or pale grey colours for walls as these make your property appear bright, spacious and inviting. If there are rooms in your house that have especially bright/dark colours this can make rooms appear smaller or darker so we recommend considering re-painting these or using them as an accent colour on one wall only.

If you feel your property would benefit from some updating, fitting new neutral carpets, changing dated wallpaper to contemporary feature wallpaper and updating light fittings/door handles etc can help improve this without costing too much money.

Environment

It is essential to ensure that during viewings the entire house is clean and tidy. Wherever possible when preparing to sell your house you should de-clutter every room and limit how many personal items are on display. Remember, you are trying to encourage buyers to imagine themselves living in your house, this can be made more difficult if there are numerous photos of you and your family everywhere or your ornaments/collections are taking up too much space.

In particular, pay close attention to these rooms:

Bathroom
Ensure that the bathroom is clean, free from mould and any personal items are out of sight. Scented candles are a welcome addition to maintain a fresh, clean smell and colour co-ordinated clean towels are also encouraged.

Bedrooms
Ensure beds are made and clothes are put away. It is best to limit the number of personal items that you have on surfaces so you can present a room that appears calm and an ideal place to rest.

Kitchen
This is probably the most important room in the house to help achieve a sale. Even if your home does not benefit from a new kitchen there are still steps that you can take to present it to its best advantage.

It is vital that you make sure that all the surfaces are free of clutter so buyers feel that the storage is adequate. Appliances should be clean and any appliances not in use put away. If you know the kitchen needs updating, if your existing cabinets are in good condition it is worth considering installing new door fronts or painting existing ones and replacing door handles. This can help improve the overall appearance of the kitchen without going to the expense of refitting. New flooring and/or retiling can also help a dated kitchen feel more contemporary.

Viewings- What to do on The Big Day…

If you have chosen to conduct the viewings yourself, when showing people around your home make sure that you introduce yourself and take their name (s).

Encourage buyers to ask any questions they may have as you go around and highlight any key features each room offers such as original flooring, fireplaces, remote mood lighting etc. Make sure to mention any work that has been done to improve the property. Talk to the buyers about their property needs so you can try and relate how your property would suit them and their situation. Key questions to ask are:

  • What are they looking for in a house?
  • How long have they been looking?
  • How quickly do they want to move?
  • What do they think of the house?

Then if it is appropriate to do so, after showing them around invite them to take some time to look around again without you.

Finally. when you are showing them out thank them for their time, let them know that they are welcome to come back again for a second viewing and encourage them to provide feedback to your agent. If they show interest in your property, without being impolite try and avoid directly discussing any potential offers you would consider as your estate agent will be more experienced in this area. The best thing to say if they do ask is that you are keen to agree a sale and that you are open to considering any reasonable offers you receive. You can then direct them to speak with the agent if they wish to discuss things further.

If you follow the tips and advice above, with the help of your agent you can be confident that you are helping your property stand the best chance of agreeing a sale and hopefully at the best price.

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