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Getting your property ready for the market

Mon 27 April 2020

Has your move been delayed because of the Coronavirus pandemic? Or now you have spent more time at home, are you thinking about moving when things return to normal?

Perhaps you are thinking of moving to a more rural location or into a bigger property, closer to family and friends (or further away).

Most of us have more time on our hands and it could be spent getting your home ready for sale or to let. There are plenty of steps you can take during this time to ensure that your property is looking its best which will increase your chances of finding a buyer or a tenant, as well as getting the best possible price.

Maintenance

It is important for prospective tenants or purchasers to feel that your property has been well looked after.

You should consider the curb-appeal of your property, with the outside being the first thing a buyer or prospective tenant will see. Would some well-placed potted plants or trees enhance a front porch? Does your fence or gate need repairing or repainting? Making sure your home looks good on the outside will make a buyer or prospective tenant interested on the inside.

A fresh coat of paint in a neutral colour will brighten the room and give the feeling of space. A blank canvas will be appealing to buyers who will want to put their own stamp on a property. 

Anything that is damaged, broken or not working properly should be repaired or replaced. For example, faulty locks, dripping taps or discoloured grouting may put a buyer or tenant off.

Keeping your home clean whilst offering it for sale or to rent is very important. You can either do this yourself or call in a professional. Surfaces should be clear, beds made and bathrooms kept clean. If your carpets are in good condition, it may be worth having these professionally cleaned before showing your home.

The scent of your home is also very important. Regularly opening the windows to let in plenty of fresh air will help and, if you have pets, regularly wash their bedding. Whilst overpowering odours should be kept to a minimum, subtly scented reed diffusers or plug-in air fresheners are relatively inexpensive and effective. Fresh flowers can also make homes feel more inviting and give off a nice scent.

If your property has an outside space, it is important that this is well looked after. Whether it be a balcony or wide-sweeping lawns, ensuring that these spaces are well-maintained and tidy will be a huge plus for a buyer or a tenant. 

Declutter and depersonalize

Moving out of your home will inevitably require you to declutter or part with some of your belongings. It is important that your house feels lived in, but there needs to be a balance between a welcoming home and your home. This may mean reducing the number of photographs you have out on display, putting away children’s toys and discarding old magazines.

Many people will have been living in their properties for a number of years and have a larger volume of possessions to sort through. If you cannot bear to part with the majority of your belongings you can rent a storage unit or for those of you that are less sentimental, you could contact a local skip hire firm.

Find yourself an Estate Agent or Letting Agent

You should first and foremost spend some time choosing an agent to list your property. You can easily find a list of agents operating in your area by carrying out an internet search, be sure to pay attention to their reviews and visit their website.

You will have likely done your own research and have an idea of what you think your property might be worth. You should look to have a market appraisal carried out by a selection of agents who will give you their view on what they think it is worth, who your target market is and whether they have people on their mailing lists who would want to come around immediately.

Good agents will also give you advice on improvements that they think may improve the marketability of your property (and even the value). We are recommending that our vendor and landlord clients take good-quality photographs of their properties in the good weather now which could be used for marketing now or later in the year.

The agents should give you a written valuation of your property and outline their fees and terms should you appoint them to sell your property. If you have invited more than one agent to give their opinion, you may be considering appointing the agent quoting the highest value or the cheapest fee (or both) to win your instruction. You should make sure they provide comparables to demonstrate how they have reached the value they have placed on your property. If they are offering a cheap commission, you should check their terms to see exactly what is included and to make sure there are no hidden extras.

RH & RW Clutton recognises that selling and buying or renting and letting a property is a major personal transaction and our highly experienced agents do their best to make the process as simple and as stress free as possible. We have considerable knowledge of local markets and provide proactive marketing advice. Our properties are marketed on our website and on the other major portals, including OnTheMarket and Rightmove, and through our social media channels.

Our fee structure is similar to many other estate agents who operate on a ‘no sale, no fee’ basis and can be tailored to suit each individual client’s requirements.

We offer free, no-obligation, market appraisals which can be carried out by video call during the Coronavirus pandemic. With the government guidance in place which means we cannot carry out in-person viewings at the moment, we are being proactive and can organise for a virtual tour to be prepared for your property with one of our trusted and reputable suppliers. 

For more information about our services, please visit our residential sales and lettings pages or contact us if you would like a free market appraisal.

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