Attracting buyers

Ideas to help you sell

When it comes to selling your property, it is down to you to present your house as one that appeals to prospective buyers. There are several small precautions you can take to ensure that the snapshot of your home that is seen by buyers is one that entices them towards the property.

Repairs and maintenance

In order to sell your property for the best price possible it is advisable that the house is presented as unblemished as possible. However, before any renovation is undertaken, it is worth calculating the maximum potential value of your property. It is senseless to spend £20,000 on property improvements just to add £10,000 on the sale price. Research through property papers and liaise with estate agents to work out asking prices for similar properties.

Repair tips that help to sell your home

  • Finish off small DIY jobs - touch-up chipped woodwork and replace washers on dripping taps.
  • A well-kept garden, pathway and fence are immediately appealing.
  • Water can cause major problems in unwanted places. Check your roof and guttering and replace broken tiles. It's worth casting an eye over the drains too. A drain cleared before a blockage occurs is easier on the nose and the wallet!
  • A regular lick of paint will keep a property looking good and keep deterioration at bay. A newly-painted front door with shiny brass fittings always creates a good impression. When selling, a surveyor will be able to spot if attempts at 'sprucing up' your property are simply quick fixes - he'll be much more impressed by ongoing maintenance.
  • Revitalise a bathroom with a green leafy plant, new taps, a shower curtain and a light pull. All these items can be picked up cheaply from DIY warehouses.
  • Coloured bathroom suites are dated and classic white is back in vogue. If you've got an avocado or pink bathroom, consider investing in a traditional white suite. It will add value to your property.
  • Restoring fireplaces and period features, such as ceiling roses and cornices, can add thousands of pounds to a property. If you don't have a fireplace, a striking picture can work equally well. If you decide to install a fireplace, look for an original period grate and surround in reclamation yards.

Decorative look & feel

When selling your property a lot can be achieved by transforming the personal aspects of the house. The potential buyer wants to envisage them and their family living in the property, so create a warm and positive atmosphere to your home to help them along with the process.

Tips for home decoration

  • Paint walls - a pale, plain shade maximises the feeling of light and space and enables buyers to imagine their possessions in the property. Research shows that most buyers prefer natural, earthy colours to bright, bold shades. Although there's a wide range of paint colours available, magnolia is still the top-selling colour.
  • De-personalise your rooms by removing personal items such as family photographs and children's drawings which may distract potential buyers. Buyers should be looking at the property, not the owner's possessions. Removing clutter makes it easier for buyers to imagine their own belongings in a room.
  • Revitalise a bathroom with a green leafy plant, new taps, a shower curtain and a light pull. All these items can be picked up cheaply from DIY warehouses.
  • Flowers and a bowl of fruit will brighten up a room and provide a pleasant smell.
  • Organise rooms - a property will be more appealing if rooms have a specific purpose and this allows buyers to see the full potential of the property.
  • Coloured bathroom suites are out and old-fashioned white is back in vogue. If you've got an avocado or pink bathroom, consider investing in a white suite. It will add value to your property.
  • Restoring fireplaces and period features, such as ceiling roses and cornices, can add thousands of pounds to a property. If you don't have a fireplace, a striking picture can work equally well. If you decide to install a fireplace, look for an original period grate and surround in reclamation yards.
  • Pick up more ideas in Homes DIY and Design Inspiration sections.

Handy tips for viewings

  • Avoid strong food odours - don't cook food such as fish or curry before a viewing as the smell will linger. The smell of freshly-baked bread or fresh coffee is said to provide a welcoming feel to a home.
  • Ask friends or family to look after any pets during viewings.
  • Try and make viewers feel comfortable. Offer them a coffee and ask them if they need any further information about bills or local amenities.

Attracting your buyer