Sunday, 6 February 2011

Do you really want to sell your Property?

If the answer to this is yes then please read on.

I’ve been through a journey the last few months, looking for the right Estate Agent to sell a property and learning how best to achieve a successful sale.  Being the largest single asset in our portfolio we need to get it right.  We should maximise this asset as we won’t get a second chance.

We’re currently improving the property and plan to market it soon.  We will then find out just how successful our efforts have been. 

In the meantime I thought I’d share with you some tips I’ve learned so far:-

  1. Emotions – detach yourself emotionally from your property.  If you let your emotions get involved it will make everyone’s job more difficult and put off a potential Buyer who will be hoping to find their own bond with your property.  They really won’t want to know about yours.
  2. De-clutter – clear it or hide it.  Don’t kid yourself that viewers will be ok with your clothes, washing, dog baskets, ash trays, rubbish, washing up, last night’s take-away or any other clutter on display.  It’s difficult for anyone to imagine themselves living in a house that looks a mess.
  3. Neutralise – neutralise colour and smells.  Don’t inflict your likes, passions or bad habits on potential buyers, they won’t appreciate it.  Take time to do a deep clean and unless you have some precious period colours then redecorate throughout with a fresh coat of neutral colour paint – it won’t cost much and can make so much difference.
  4. Maintenance – fix that dripping tap, re-grout tiles, re-seal baths, showers and basins, replace dud light bulbs, fix loose, broken or tarnished door handles, loose or missing roof tiles, clear out gutters and downpipes. Service and test heating and electrical installations.  Consider asking a handyman to walk round with you looking for anything that needs attention – you’d be surprised how you get used to living with things that really need sorting.  An independent eye can help head off reasons for a potential buyer to reduce their offer.
  5. Outside – yes Kerb Appeal matters.  So many buyers say they fell in love with the property in the first few minutes – don’t let this opportunity slip away.  Put some nice pots and plants outside, clean up, hide bins and tidy the garden, pressure wash patios and driveways, put your garden furniture out.  Decorate the outside with neutral colours if necessary.  Above all your front door should look so inviting.
  6. Consider asking a Property Stylist to help you present your property at its best – it will give it that extra something to make it stand out from other properties and give yours the edge.  Don’t forget you’re selling a home and lifestyle, not just a property – a Stylist will know how to do this.
  7. Find the right agent and get the right valuation – I found this the hardest of all and it was worthy of a separate blog here
  8. Paperwork – don’t give potential Buyers any reason to delay or re-negotiate price.  Get your paperwork in order before you put your house on the market.  My paperwork pack includes the following:-
a)  Deeds showing boundaries, rights of way and proof of ownership
b)  Listed Building Consents
c)  Building Regs completion certificate
d)  Building Regs drawings and approval for works to unconverted adjacent barn
e)  Structural Warranty Inspection Reports
f)  Wildlife surveys
g)  Consent to discharge for Septic Tank
h)      Council Tax Bill
i)        Electric Bill
j)        Water Bill showing no mains sewerage charge
k)      Test certificates for Electrical Installation
l)        Boiler and Aga service Certificates
m)    Warranties for appliances and works carried out – where applicable.

If you can’t be bothered with these things then are you sure you really want to sell?