Getting your Home Sale-ready

1. De-clutter and de-personalise
Start the big clear-out in advance of property viewings, and when you have given away, recycled or sold as much as possible, hide as much of what’s left as possible. Clear the jumble of coats and shoes from the hallway, store excess bathroom products in cupboards and keep kitchen surfaces clear of appliances, jars and bottles. Buyers need to be able to see themselves in your home, so it could even be worth storing personal items, such as family photographs, in drawers and cupboards.

2. Spruce up the decor
A fresh coat of neutral paint and re-grouting dirty tiling can make a big difference, and if your kitchen is starting to look tired, you don’t necessarily need a new one. Giving cupboard doors a thorough shine or even replacing them, including the handles, can make a huge difference. Make sure all light bulbs are working, present the beds nicely and add some plants in bare corners for a homely feel.

3. Deep-clean
Everyone has a different barometer on hygiene, but a deep-clean is an important step. So, either get the industrial gloves on and the elbow grease out or consider a professional cleaning company. If you don’t fancy grappling with ovens, shower doors and underneath sofas, it could be a worthwhile investment.

4. Don’t forget the garden
A recent Zoopla poll found that more than a quarter of potential buyers would be put off by an overgrown garden. Give yours a tidy prune both front and back and position a table and chairs neatly in a spot where potential buyers could imagine having a morning coffee.

5. Sacrifice your parking space
If your home comes with an allocated parking space, leave it free for prospective buyers to use. It’s convenient, helpful, and gives them a hassle-free first impression to put them in a good mood ahead of the viewing. If it’s permit-parking in your neighbourhood, you might even consider buying a stash of visitor permits in advance. A nice touch and worthwhile investment if it leads to a home sale.

6. Hire the right estate agent
When it comes to getting the right sale price for your property, it’s a good idea ask up to three agents round for a valuation. Make sure they are knowledgeable, locally active and you have a good rapport and partner leading property portals, including Zoopla, Rightmove and to reach the biggest possible number of prospective buyers. You should also ask about tie-in periods and how the fees will increase if you choose to market with more than one agency. Zoopla has a handy AgentFinder tool that allows you to compare local estate agents for the average time it takes to sell a property and shows how many properties similar to yours it lists.

7. Get on top of your paperwork
Instruct a solicitor to kick off the conveyancing process nice and early. Ask them to break down and fully explain all costs associated with selling and try get a fixed upfront fee for their services. Check with your mortgage lender if you can transfer your current deal to a new property or if any redemption charges will apply. Also, gather all the paperwork on your current property, such as building certificates for any structural work and guarantees for double glazing, boilers or fireplaces, so you are prepared for any questions the buyer’s solicitors may ask

8. Be smart on viewings
It’s always advisable to let an agent show your home, as they are the experts – and don’t have the same emotional attachment. As much as you might like to assess the buyers, as the owner, you should ideally vacate. If you must conduct viewings yourself, show the best rooms either first or last and try to be impartial, honest and be ready for any questions.

Article courtesy of Zoopla

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