Everything looks that bit nicer in the sun, when the leaves unfurl and gardens green up nicely. The statistics prove it too; on average homes sell for 3 percent more than they do in the winter.
As the average price of a UK property is currently around the £250,000 mark, it means you’ll have a very welcome £7,500 extra in your pocket than if you sold in the coldest months.
So what are the best ways to go about trying to maximise the sale price of your property? Here are the key things you should be doing:
Know your target market and get the timing right
Knowing the type of people who’ll be most interested in buying your home is crucial to preparing it for sale. Ask yourself what sort of person would want to buy it. Is it young families? Or those with teenage children? Older couples? Young professionals? Estate agents should be able to give you pointers if you’re not sure. Then you can decorate and adjust your home’s rooms and what they’re used for accordingly.
Always de-clutter and make a home neutral
Any potential buyer looking around your home has to be able to imagine living there and having lots of stuff lying around and personal objects, such as ornaments and photographs won’t help them do this. The less personal the better.
Less furniture is better as it helps to give a feeling of space and completely tidy up, paying particular attention to kitchens and bathrooms.
A lick of paint and some tiling works wonders
Any rooms which are in strong bold colours need to be re-painted neutral, as does the exterior of a home (most buyers make up their minds about a property before they even get inside).
If possible, re-tile old, tired bathrooms and, again, paint them in neutral colours.
Clean, clean and clean again
It’s extremely important that the house smells fresh and looks spotless. Buyers aren’t that imaginative and most people will view dirty, grubby home in a very negative light, pushing down your selling price.
Carpets should be cleaned and curtains washed. Re-covering old cushions and sofas is a good idea (or buy new ones!).
Valuation and selling price
Valuing a property certainly isn’t an exact science, but getting the sale price right is very important. Try and get a minimum of 3 valuations, and look at what other properties on your street and area have sold for most recently (there’s plenty of information available online for this).
Too high, and your property won’t get many viewings and might become ‘dead’ on the market, with you eventually having to cut the price possibly to below it’s ‘natural’ value at which you could have sold it if you hadn’t been greedy!
Prepare your home for viewings
It’s something of a cliché, but the old fresh coffee, baked bread and flowers trick works wonders and truly can help sell a home.
Think about presentation and after following the de-cluttering and freshening up tips already given, really try and look at your rooms in a critical way. Even ask friends to be honest about the position of furniture and any ‘eye sores’ that you might have grown accustomed to and simply don’t see anymore.
Choose the right buyer
It’s not always the highest bidder that makes the best buyer. Find out as much as possible about the buyers circumstances. Ask how much of a deposit they have if they’re buying with a mortgage. If they’re a cash buyer, ask to see proof such as bank statements. Are they first-time buyers? Are they in a chain (i.e. selling their own property)?
Keeping the deal alive
Once your solicitor has been put in touch with the buyer’s solicitor, you should take an active interest in checking how things are proceeding. Look for any tell-tale signs of stalling and ask for explanations. Keep all channels of communication open and take not of how they buyer’s are proceeding with conveyancing and surveys.
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