The UK property market usually starts getting busy in Autumn again, so if you are thinking of selling your home in Belgravia, Mayfair, Knightsbridge, South Kensington or Chelsea, now is a great time to prepare for it.
Some properties will sell themselves. For example, a highly-prized location in a particularly pretty street in prime central London where the property is spacious, light-filled and tastefully decorated might be what all buyers are looking for. However, these properties still need to be presented attractively for viewings.
The photographs used to support your online listing should showcase your property at its best, and this standard should be maintained throughout all viewings.
If you’re ready to sell your house, make sure you follow these tips on how to make your home more attractive to buyers and entice more viewings.
Stage your house for sale
What does home staging mean? It’s the preparation of your property so it is viewed at its best and strikes an emotion within the potential buyer to submit an offer.
Here are some general tips for home staging:
- Kitchen – bake some fresh bread or make some fresh coffee in a filter, present a bouquet of colourful flowers in a vase, put a fruit bowl on display
- Living room – add soft furnishings and cushions, remove any visible wires.
- Bedroom – remove all personal items, fluff up the pillows and layer the bedding with a throw
Read on for more ways to make your home attractive to potential buyers…
Fix the little things
Broken floor tiles, damaged guttering, cracks in plaster and peeling paintwork should all be rectified ahead of viewings. You won’t necessarily want to spend a lot on repairs, but make sure the property is in a good condition, while any superficial flaws can usually be put right for minimal outlay.
The more polish you can put on your home through little repairs and home improvements, the more appealing and impressive to buyers it will be.
Walk around each room in your home as if you are a new buyer and think through their eyes. Will you buy this place? If not, why? Ask your estate agents to do this exercise too.
Neutralise the décor
A penchant for using bold paint colours on the walls is all well and good, as colour enriches a home, but it’s generally a good idea to neutralise your wall and ceiling colours and stick to a safer palette of off-whites and beige prior to selling a property. This will help to depersonalise the space and give that blank canvas you should try to aim for.
Focus on the important rooms
You can argue that when it comes to selling a property, all the rooms are important and each needs to look equally presentable, but it’s generally true that the kitchen and bathroom are the two rooms which viewers will scrutinise the most.
Because they are rooms which cost the most to refurbish and upgrade.
If renovation or refurbishment needs to be done, then the potential vendor is more likely to think twice about buying the property, especially if they’re not looking to take on a project.
Make sure the bathrooms and kitchen will appeal as much as possible to the average viewer. Deal with any obvious flaws, update where possible, and again, neutralise the décor.
Emphasise the property’s best attributes
To sell your home, consider the following questions. Does the place benefit from well-preserved period features? Is the kitchen particularly spacious? Is the hallway a winning feature? Perhaps an indoor gym or home cinema room is one of the property’s assets?
Always aim to highlight a property’s best features and attributes. Ensure you advise your estate agent, so they can play to these strengths in photographs and viewings.
What about your pets?
Pets are amazing companions, but they are not very good salesmen.
Pet lovers are likely to pay more attention to your pet than your home and pet haters will feel uncomfortable in your home and may rush the viewing and leave as soon as possible.
Ideally, ask someone to look after your pet, or take it for a walk whilst viewings are taking place.
Remove any pet stains and odours, pet bowls, cages, litter trays and toys. You are trying to appeal to as many potential buyers as you can, and pets can really get in the way of this goal if you are not careful.
Introduce good smells and remove the bad
Bad aromas are the single biggest turn off for prospective house buyers. Don’t just cover up the smells before potential buyers arrive, fix the problem.
Ensure you rid the home of cooking smells, clean the air of cigarette smoke, clean the drains, empty the bins, open the windows and clean any furniture that may be retaining smells.
Once the source is treated, introduce ‘good’ smells into your property.
Fresh flowers or natural-smelling air fresheners could make a big difference. Perhaps even brew some fresh coffee – a smell 36% of people, in a survey, said appealed to them whilst viewing a property.
Be clever with lighting
A well-lit room makes all the difference. It provides a refreshing uplift to the property. Ensure all the curtains and blinds are open to allow natural light to flood in. If the room is dark, turn on lamps to give a warm ambience. The key is to provide a bright and airy atmosphere for the buyer at viewings.
Create a master retreat in the bedroom
As part of the home staging process, make the master bedroom the focal point. Ensure the room is minimalistic, remove large pieces of furniture to create a spacious atmosphere. Focus on the bed and making it as inviting as possible. Use fresh, quality bedding and add soft textures.
Hallways can be distracting or inviting
Your property in Belgravia or Mayfair may have a long hallway. Look at your hallway and ensure it is spacious and inviting. Remove shoes and any other personal items. Add artwork in contrasting colours to the walls.
How’s the outside space?
If you have a property in central London, a private garden is not that common. But if you have an outside area, make sure it is well-presented and tidy. If it seems a little barren, introduce some potted plants. Create an area where people can sit, eat, drink and socialise. Always make the most of any garden area, courtyard or roof terrace.
Boost your property’s kerb appeal
What does your property look like from the outside? Make your home more appealing to buyers within the first few minutes of the viewing and ensure it is in keeping with the neighbourhood. Replace or paint the front door, change door numbers and light fittings, clean the path leading up to the property, jet wash the driveway, refurbish any front fences or gates, clean all the windows and ensure the doorbell functions.
Clean up and clear up
If the property has ample storage space, use it. Don’t clear up to such an extent that the place looks clinically clean and unlived in, but you could remove framed personal photographs on tables, clear away that stack of magazines, and anything else which doesn’t need to be on display. Viewers will try to imagine whether they can see themselves living in the space, so clean up and clear up, but aim for an atmosphere of warmth, comfort and homeliness.
Your real estate agent can always offer guidance on how to spruce up your property ahead of viewings, but by taking the above into consideration – tweaking things and allowing the property to shine through naturally – viewings are more likely to be successful, increasing the likelihood of selling your home quickly and for the best possible price.
If you’re looking to sell a property in Belgravia, Mayfair, Knightsbridge, South Kensington or Chelsea, contact our sales team today for a property sales valuation.