How to prepare your property for the market this summer

How to prepare your property for the market this summer

Posted 3rd Jun 2015

With property prices increasing by 10% since last year, many Brits will be planning to take advantage and sell their homes this summer. They’ll be battling with each other to show how desirable their home is and trying to prove to critical buyers that their homes really are worth the higher prices


To ensure homeowners prepare their properties to perfection for viewings, Paul Stricker, founder of Boxman, the self-storage company where all you do is pack, has compiled a list of tips to ensure British homes are looking their best for potential buyers.

1. Mood your rooms

As a starting point, walk through all of the rooms in your home and decide what type of atmosphere you’d like to create in each one. If you’re targeting family buyers, think of ways to make the rooms playful and child-friendly, whilst allowing for some relaxation spaces for the parents to unwind when the kids have gone to bed. Put yourself in the shoes of a buyer and be critical about what needs to be changed.

2. Try to depersonalise
When creating the right atmosphere in your home, make sure there are as little personalised items as possible left around the house. Ornaments and family photos should be kept to a minimum to allow potential buyers to imagine themselves living in your home.

3. Make a fix list

Jot down all repair jobs that need to be completed to have your home ready for viewing. Think of dripping taps, peeling wallpaper, broken locks and damaged furniture. Set yourself a budget for these jobs – small, quick fixes are all that’s required.

4. Get drive-by ready

Before attending the viewing, many potential buyers will do a quick dry run to the property to ensure they know how to get there on the day. Make your home look inviting by perhaps giving the front door a new lick of paint, hanging some flower baskets and ensuring the pathway is free from weeds and overgrown hedges.

5. Find a pet-sitter

Though your pets may mean the world to you, they could be a potential buyer’s worst nightmare. Ask a friend to take care of them during the viewings and ensure all furniture is fuzz-free to ensure your home is allergy-friendly.

6. Declutter

This is one of the most important steps to take when preparing you home for viewings. Clutter makes room feel smaller, making your property less attractive to potential buyers. A storage company like Boxman is the perfect short-term solution for viewings – choose your items to store and Boxman will provide sturdy plastic boxes, pick them up before the viewing and return them to your door at your request. Pay particular attention to books, DVDs, kitchen appliances and potted plants that make rooms look smaller than you would imagine.

7. Get product perfect
After you’ve decluttered, make sure the products you’ve left on show are looking their best. Place new soap and matching hand towels in the bathroom and fresh sheets on the beds. Remove and store these items after each viewing to minimise the cleaning process before the next one.

8. Highlight your home’s best features
What will make your home stand out amongst other properties on the market? Do you have a stunning fireplace, a grand staircase or a beautiful balcony? If so, make sure no furniture is blocking these features to ensure they stand out as soon as you enter the room.

9. Get the temperature right
There’s nothing worse than entering a house that is reminiscent of either a fridge freezer or a sauna. Make sure your property is well aired in the days running up to the viewing and that the temperature is correct for the weather forecast on the day. If it’s a sunny day, leave doors to the garden open to highlight it as an extension of the home.

10. Let there be light
Maximise light in your home to make it seem bright and airy. Even if you don’t have a conservatory or large windows, there are lots of other ways to achieve this effect. For example, replace dim light bulbs with higher wattage, remove any heavy, dark curtains and repaint darker rooms with paler, light-reflecting tones. In addition to this, check your driveway and garden for any overgrown trees or vines and trim them back if they appear to be casting shadows inside your home. Sunlight immediately cheers up any room and creates the impression of space.

11. What’s that smell?
Smell is one of our most sensitive senses. Add to the chosen mood or your rooms by incorporating aromas that match them. For example, make a fresh pot of coffee for the kitchen and pop fresh flowers in the conservatory. If you’re in a rush, scented candles are always an effective edition to bathrooms and kitchens. If you’re a smoker, make sure your home smells smoke-free and tidy away all ashtrays. Ovens and fridges can also give off unwanted odours, so make sure you dedicate some time to clearing these out.

12. Clean up

Though an obvious one, it is also an important one. In the run up to your viewing, make sure that all surfaces are cleared, any items that haven’t been put into temporary storage have been tidied away and that all floors and fittings are sparkling clean. Double check ceiling corners for any cobwebs and dust build up. Right before the viewing, have a quick look outside and remove any rubbish in the vicinity of your home. Leave your potential buyers with no reason to dislike your property!

13. Make your visitors feel at home
Make it as easy as possible for potential buyers to imagine themselves settling into your property by providing information about local transport, retail outlets, schools and healthcare at the door. If you have a driveway, move your vehicles and allow space for viewers to park. This will personalise the experience further.

14. Be friendly!

If you’re selling the property yourself, be as helpful and chatty as you can on the day. This will only add to the positive aura of your home and may even enhance the connection your prospective buyers have with it. After all, nobody wants to live in a miserable person’s home!

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