Planning on putting your home on the market this spring? Give yourself plenty of time to get it up to scratch and sale-ready.
De-clutter and de-personalise
Don't wait until move day to embark on a big clear-out. Do it before the viewings start.
And when you've thrown out (or sold) all you can, hide as much of what's left as possible. This means clearing coats and shoes from the hallway, storing everyday bathroom products in cupboards and ridding kitchen surfaces of appliances, jars and bottles.
Buyers need to be able to visualise themselves in your home, so it could be worth going one stage further and putting away personal effects such as ornaments, photographs and your kids’ drawings.
Spruce up the decor
When your home is as empty as it can be, give it a fresh coat of neutral paint and get any dirty tiling re-grouted. If your kitchen is old, you don't necessarily need a new one. Replacing cupboard doors – or even just door handles – can make a huge difference.
Make sure all spotlights and other light bulbs are working, present the beds nicely and add some plants in bare corners for a homely feel.
A deep-clean of your home by a professional cleaning company, which tackles things like ovens, shower doors and underneath sofas, makes a huge difference – and could be cheaper than you think.
Don't forget the garden
A recent poll found that more than a quarter of potential buyers would be put off by an overgrown garden, so cut yours right down to the front and back. Position a table and chairs in a spot where buyers could imagine having a morning coffee.
Sacrifice your parking space
If your home comes with an allocated parking space, leave it free for prospective buyers to use. It’s convenient and offers an experience that's closer to the reality of what it's like to live in your home.
Hire the right estate agent
When it comes to getting the right sale price for your property, it’s a good idea get three agents round for a valuation. But don’t automatically plump for the one who gives you the highest, or lowest commission fee – this is an old trick used to win instructions.
Get on top of your paperwork
Instruct a solicitor to kick off the conveyancing process early. Ask them to break down and fully explain all costs associated with selling and, if you can, get a fixed upfront fee for their services.
Check with your mortgage lender if you can transfer the same deal to a new property, or if any redemption charges will apply.
Gather all the paperwork on your current property together, such as building certificates for any structural work and guarantees for double glazing, boilers or fireplaces.
Be smart on viewings
When it comes to viewings on your home, it’s always best to get an agent to do it!