Getting ready to sell

get organised

Make your home as easy to buy as possible. 

In other words make the buyer’s job as simple as possible. Buyers need reassurance. They need to feel confident that they are not buying a problem property.

Get a LIM report from the council on your property (you’ll have to pay for it but this is a smart cost to incur; see it as part of your marketing costs) so that there aren’t any nasty surprises for you or your potential purchasers. It’s a simple way to confirm that the right approvals have been obtained for any building work on your property. If they haven’t, you should organise that before you put the property on the market.

Try to see your home through the eyes of potential buyers. Stand on the footpath outside and see whether it appears an attractive proposition – and if not, whether there’s something straightforward you can do to improve it.

Look at the garden, the front steps and front door, the windows. Often, a simple tidy-up is enough. Other times, you may need to spend some money to get the best price for your property. Seek your agent’s advice on what they think will be worth doing. 

There’s nothing worse than going to an open home that looks unkempt and uncared for. You might be able to see past your jumble of possessions to the true charms of the property, but don’t expect anybody else to. Tidy and clean is the only way to have your house on open home day. 

Selling, storing or giving away surplus possessions will make it easier to keep the place tidy, and give an impression of greater spaciousness. Don’t shove everything into cupboards: the cupboards need to be spotless and immaculately tidy too, since open home visitors who have any interest at all in the house are likely to open cupboards to check the storage space. 

To help your house really shine, put a few vases of fresh flowers around. If the weather is chilly, warm the house before the open home. Have the lights on if the day is even slightly gloomy, and have the house aired so it’s as fresh as possible. Baking bread and making coffee are rather clichéd ways of making your home seem welcoming – but they still work. 

Unless you’re conducting a private sale, try not to be in the house during the open home. Prospective buyers won’t feel free to fully inspect the place if you’re there. 

After each open home or buyer inspection, your agent should report back on how it went and update you on how the sale is progressing generally. They should discuss on-going strategies or any changes you may have to consider – whether they are to do with how the house looks or what your price expectations might be.