Are you wondering why your house won’t sell? Has your home been on the market for a while now but no-one seems to be putting in an offer?
According to estate agents, homeowners who are trying to sell their home are ignoring some important details.
We’ve spoken to a range of estate agents who point out some of the main points homeowners are failing to do before trying to sell.
Think about the small details
One that really seems to grind estate agents’ gears is keeping the home tidy.
Louise Kinloch, Senior Valuer/Branch Manager, CENTURY 21 Central Scotland West said:
‘The most common things are the small details that clients miss. Make sure you have vacuumed the carpets or washed the floor before viewings. For early morning viewings, make sure the bedrooms have been well aired, and you have tidied mail/newspapers/magazines away.
‘Wash the dishes, vacuum the carpets, tidy away toys, work papers and anything that doesn’t give you the wow factor when a potential buyer walks into the house.’
Clare Bowyer, Lettings Manager from HomeXperts said:
‘As we all know first impressions count, and when a potential buyer is coming to view your home, the last thing they want to see is washing on radiators, dirty dishes and overgrown gardens.
‘In a bid to sell your property there are just a few simple things you can do to help, cost nothing, but can make all the difference.’
Robert Lazarus, Sales Director at Paramount Properties said:
‘Mass untidiness makes selling a home very tough, partly because the tidy minimalist look is in fashion, and partly because buyers want to picture their furniture in each room – that’s hard to do when a property is cluttered.
‘Simply putting all toys in one box, opening the curtains and placing some fresh flowers in a vase can turn a living room around and makes it easier for buyers to imagine living there.’
Mick Slater, MD of leading Easy Midlands Estate Agents; Kingstead Property Group explains:
‘The preparation for selling a property obviously starts with tidiness; Right from the start this allows the agent to take uncluttered quality photos inside and out for marketing on major portals, websites and selling details, and therefore expand the reach of your home to prospective buyers’.
Make sure your house smells pleasant to visitors
Estate agents want you to remember that some smells that you don’t notice, such as that of pets and smoking, can be off-putting to those viewing your home.
Adam Day, Managing Director of Hatched said:
‘(Smelly) dogs and smokers will of course always be one of the key problems for vendors – to the non-pet owner and non-smokers these odours will be instantly apparent’
Surrey Estate Agent, Barton Wyatt agreed:
‘People’s pets are much loved by the owner but very often just the owner and not necessarily the person that is going to buy your house.
‘Pets also can have quite a strong odour, not to mention the litter trays, food bowls and paraphernalia that goes with having an animal in the house to try to keep pet evidence to a minimum.’
Ensure your home doesn’t look outdated
A general tip for any homeowner is to keep your home updated and regularly make improvements to make your home desirable.
Adam Day, Managing Director of Hatched continues:
‘Another issue that is often harder to explain to the vendor is that the ‘improvements’ they’ve made to their home are actually detrimental to their efforts selling.
‘This could be due to their modernisations being outdated or their choice of colours and decor being rather garish and not ‘on trend’.’
Remember: First impressions count
Estate agents recommend imagining yourself as the potential buyer.
Ed Mead, Executive Director at Douglas & Gordon said:
‘The best way to sell your home is to cast yourself as the buyer. Most buyers will have bought, in their minds, within 10 seconds of walking in, so concentrate on that.
‘The approach to the front door – even if it’s a flat make sure it looks good. If it’s a flat make sure the common parts are up to scratch and spend money if necessary painting or replacing a bit of carpet.’
Tepilo, Sarah Beeny’s Online Estate Agents said:
‘Firstly, stand at the front of your home and try to take a dispassionate look at what you are seeing. Paint your front door, replace broken paving slabs, put your rubbish bins out of sight and add greenery wherever possible.
‘Also, make sure windows are sparkling and letting in as much light as possible. If it looks like you don’t love your home, how is anyone else going to fall in love with it?’
Brief the agent so they are fully prepared
It is important you let estate agents know everything you can about your home to answer any questions that may arise.
Surrey Estate Agent Barton Wyatt also advised:
‘The more we are prepared to answer questions about your house the easier it will be to sell it and allay any fears that prospective buyers may have. As an Estate Agent, we dislike not having the answers.
‘We particularly dislike not knowing how your gadgetry works so please do show us how to use the iPad entry system, the drop down cinema and the fancy lighting system!
‘If we make it look easy the clients will love it – if we don’t know how it works – then they are put off.’