If you're planning on selling your home, you can improve your chances of making a good first impression by maximising your property's kerb appeal.
Here are six simple things you can do to ensure you attract potential sellers rather than put them off.
1. Tidy up the front garden
The front garden is one of the first things any prospective buyer will see, so if the bins are overflowing or any flowerbeds are stacked full of weeds, it’s time to take action. Have a good clear up and chuck out any litter, and trim back any overgrown shrubs and bushes so they look nice and smart.
It’s also worth repairing any broken fences or gates, so that potential buyers don’t start totting up the cost of repairing this sort of thing before they’ve even gone through the front door.
Invest in a few plant pots or window boxes with some seasonal flowers in them too. This will add a bit of colour and show that you care about your property.
2. Clean your windows
If you can’t see through your front windows because they’re covered in grime, either book a window cleaner or tackle the job yourself (as long as it is safe for you to do so). Newspaper is one of the best ways to clean windows without leaving any smears.
Simply mix equal parts of white wine vinegar with water, apply it to the glass using an old spray bottle, and then wipe with the newspaper. Lemon juice can also work well and you can apply it to the glass directly before rubbing with paper.
3. Wash your curtains
Once those windows are sparkling clean, prospective buyers will be able to look straight into your home, and the last thing they will want to see is grubby curtains or curtains that are hanging off the rail. Take dirty curtains or blinds to the dry cleaners before viewings begin, and make sure that they look neat and tidy from the outside.
4. Paint doors and window frames
Chipped or peeling paintwork is a big no-no if you want your home to impress, so give your doors and window frames a fresh lick of paint before viewings begin. A spokesman for Malcolms Estate Agency said: “A splash of colour can give your house a new lease of life and creates an excellent first impression. It draws potential buyers’ eye not only in photographs, but also when they first view your property.”
5. Repair render
Render can be a big turn off to potential buyers if it’s in a poor state of repair, as cracks could indicate that there is a structural problem. If you’ve had any cracks looked into by a surveyor and know they are harmless, make repairs and re-paint your property.
Alternatively, consider covering old render with another coat of smooth render to bring it up to date and give your property a contemporary feel. This won’t come cheap, but if you’re struggling to sell your home, it could prompt buyers to see it in a different light.
6. Ask your neighbours to clear up
Remember it’s not just your own home which can have an impact on whether or not someone viewing your property decides to put in an offer. According to research by Saga, three quarters of people rate the state of the house next door before making an offer.
Rubbish, overgrown gardens and dismantled cars in neighbouring properties all put people off buying homes, so it’s worth having a gentle word with your neighbours and asking them if you can help them clear up.