Top Tips for Staging your Home for sale
With the cold winter weather fading into memory and sunnier, warmer days heralding the start of spring, this is a key time for sellers in the UK to place their property onto the market. Whether your property is your beloved home, a property investment or a holiday let, you need to make sure your property stands out from the crowd and shows its full value to potential buyers. ‘VMRConsulting’ has put together some handy, easy to use tips.
One of the most common mistakes sellers make is to rush to put their homes onto the open market without preparing the property first. The result is that with time, sellers become increasingly concerned when few viewings and poor feedback from viewings leads to few if any serious offers. Instead of making this mistake, be proactive and maximise the potential value in your property by staging it correctly from the onset.
First Impressions –
First impressions count in all walks of life and no more so than in the world of property. When potential buyers arrive at your property, positive first impressions of both the outside and inside of the property can allow the potential buyer to visually imagine living in the space. This is the first step for a potential buyer to become a real buyer!
Kerb Appeal –
When potential buyers drive up to your home for a viewing or do the beloved ‘ drive-by’ on a Sunday afternoon, checking out the property from their car which they saw online, what do they see? What is the first reaction of these potential buyers? Does your home stand out from the rest of the houses on the street? For all the wrong reasons? Think practically. Would buying a few plants bring some much-needed colour to the outside of your property? Does the outside wall need a tidy-up or the driveway a high-pressure hose down to remove weeds and oil? Does the front door need a fresh bit of paint? Now is the time to get on with the necessary repairs and maintenance jobs.
Homes cluttered full of furniture and personal belongings and surfaces covered full of possessions, makes a home look not only untidy but smaller. With buyers or tenants demanding constantly ‘more space’, de-cluttering is not an option. It is a must before staging your property for viewings. I try and follow the simple steps of ‘Save, skip or donate to charity’ to organise the de-cluttering process. If you simply can’t bear the thought of getting rid of some possessions, consider local temporary storage options. This can be a cost-effective means to make your home have that extra space that buyers are striving to achieve.
Spring Clean –
The coming of brighter spring days means days are longer and the spring light can be beautiful. However, this additional light can also highlight to potential buyers surfaces that require some additional cleaning. Before any viewings of your property, invest time and energy into making your home sparkle to prospective buyers. Polish floors and mirrors and wash your windows inside and out. Polish all taps in bathrooms, toilets and the kitchen. Take a room at a time and make the property, cleaner and more appealable to prospective buyers. You want your potential buyers to be visualising living in the property, not cleaning it!
Another common mistake sellers make is leaving on view all your personal belongings. Things such as personal achievement certificates and too many personal photographs distract the viewer, focusing the attention of the viewer on your personal lives, rather than the home, which you are trying to sell! Put these items away from view and bring them out in your new home, when you have successfully sold.
Now is the time to fix the tap that has been leaking for years and complete other little jobs. The danger is that during a viewing, potential buyers see only lots of little things, which need to be done, rather than visualising relaxing in their new home. Viewers will often also overestimate the time and cost that to fix any little jobs. Experience has taught me to eliminate these worries developing in the mind of potential viewers by being proactive and getting the jobs done prior to viewings.
Make each room count –
Whether you are seeking to sell a large six-bedroomed Edwardian townhouse or a chic two-bedroomed apartment, the same rule applies. After a viewing, a seller wants the potential buyer to go away and remember and discuss each room. I have found on numerous occasions that houses, which are struggling to sell, are very often full of rooms struggling for an identity. Rooms maybe look like a part-time office, a part-time playroom or even a part-time bedroom, all wrapped up in one! This simply confuses the potential buyer. If the buyer cannot see what the room is for, ‘Oh, that will be a lovely office for my husband’ or ‘yes, that would work for our children too as a play-space’, then they will see the room as unusable, a waste of space and most likely forget it. Make each room count and allow potential viewers to see how they could use each room.
Kitchens and bathrooms sell homes and so do Light and Space –
Feedback from estate agents constantly focuses on buyers ‘wanting more space’. Think of innovative ways to make your property, outside and inside, look bigger. As described above, de-cluttering is a positive step in the right direction. Also, room by room, consider how you can thin out large pieces of furniture, or remove additional stools and side-tables, making the floor space look bigger. Remove all stuff stored on tables, cupboards and on floor surface. This not only makes the property look untidy but also can make the potential buyer start to worry about a lack of storage space. Finally, try and get as much light into your home as possible. Before viewings, pull back any curtains and leave some artificial light on, adding some depth to rooms also.
Getting a home ready for viewing and staging it correctly should be viewed as an investment not a cost, financially and in time. Home-staging pays great dividends to the seller, in terms of the price received from selling and the time taken to sell the property. If you would like to discuss how VMRHomeStaging could assist you, please feel free to get in contact.