With domestic finances becoming stretched and the property market beginning to favour buyers, Nick Churton of Mayfair Office explains how sellers can maximise their return through some simple cost effective action.
Let’s face it, we are all trying to find ways of making a pound stretch a little further these days.
For home sellers the best way is to make their properties worth more. That might sound like an expensive exercise, but it really needn’t be.
To add more value the first thing you need to do is to find more room. So, make some more room. Declutter. Everything you don’t need in your home that isn’t beautiful, useful or valuable is hiding extra space from a potential buyer. Put another way, everything you take out in a pre-sale declutter can make your property more attractive to a purchaser.
Now for the hard work. But it still won’t cost you anything apart from a bottle of Mr Muscle or two (other products are available). Clean your house as if our late queen were coming for tea. Clean all of it - every corner, nook and cranny – especially the kitchen and bathroom. Clean and polish your property as if achieving the best price depends on it – because it does.
It will take a week or two to do all this properly, but it will be worth it.
Once that’s finished, if you have a friend who is good with interiors invite them around and pick their brains. Don’t be embarrassed; an amateur interior designer likes nothing more than primping someone else’s cushions. Your property has become a business in which you happen to live. Choose a highly experienced estate agent who will also be delighted to make some buyer-friendly suggestions. You want to get the best price, so listen to good advice.
Now take a look at your freshly polished home. If you are so thrilled that you think it belongs to someone else or you are tempted not to sell at all but stay put, then you know you have done a great job and that viewers will be impressed.
You could add a loft extension, build a fabulous rear room with bi-fold doors to the garden, dig out a basement room, re-fit the kitchen and bathroom, engage a firm of professional cleaners or hire stagers. But self-cleaning and de-cluttering is always the most cost-effective way to get more for your property. And remember, with many more houses and flats coming onto the market, your home will be lining up in a competitive race to the completion line.
In WWII, there was a phrase, make do and mend. If you are selling your property in these straitened times a phrase for now could be, make do and polish.