Will you inherit a home someday?
Will you need to sell that home someday?
The process of selling your house can be extremely emotionally and physically taxing.
Recently, my siblings and I inherited our mothers apartment.
The house was full of sentiment and nostalgia but definitely not showcase ready.
The first impression needs to be the best impression.
These are a few steps we went through to make our property appealing to potential buyers.
Ask yourself what do people really look for when on the hunt for a house to make their home?
A bright airy apartment, a view of either the sea or a canopy of trees would appeal more than viewing concrete buildings. Sunlight filtering through the windows of each room and natural breeze. I would give this top priority.
A Welcoming Foyer:
A foyer to the building entrance and even the floor should be neat and clean at the least. The entrance to the house should provide instant appeal. Kick the clutter of dead plants, shoes, wet umbrellas. Tidy up the shoddy name plate, polish chipped wood on the main door. If the space allows it, add in a vase with flowers that are welcoming to buyers. Give it a look of newness.
Cleaning your house before the showing is very important. I would go as far as sanitizing or deep cleaning the house professionally if it is an empty house, especially due to the pandemic. A dusty, musty and messy house is extremely unappealing to buyers.
A personal touch:
Your property should be warm and inviting, exude positive energy that this place was a home filled with warmth and memories. A personal touch to the property shows that it was a home and not just a house. However do no over personalise the house where the buyer cannot imagine himself living there. When selling a house, it is not always possible to do a total overhaul. Sometimes even a handful of small steps that can be done in a weekend will help make a house more attractive to buyers. You don’t want to completely depersonalize the house, but it should appeal to a wide range of prospective buyers.
Nothing turns off buyers more than clutter. So get rid of that clutter to sell your house. Clear shelves of unnecessary old stuff like, coasters, spectacles, newspapers, and other personal effects. Storage cupboards and wardrobes should be clean and empty not forgetting to put in a few pouches of pot purrie to keep the musty smell at bay. Artefacts and collectables— even though you will not leave them for the buyer, its always a better idea to clear as much as possible. Table tops should be cleared of any unnecessary items. Minimalism is important so the house is showcased in its own glory.
Repairs and Renovations:
-A quick paint job (a neutral colour is always a better option) to spruce up the walls and cabinets.
-Bright lights with all bulbs working, maybe even upgrade lighting to help showcase your house better.
– If being sold as a furnished apartment, all gadgets should be in working condition, clean and recently serviced.
-Fix the little things. This would be things such as broken door knobs, cracked tiles, threadbare carpets, holes in the walls, etc. Many potential buyers look for a house that is move-in ready, and avoid the responsibility of small repairs at all costs.
Brighten the House:
Dark and dingy rooms are extremely unwelcoming and will dissuade buyers. Bright and airy rooms are an important feature for homebuyers. A large percent of homebuyers say it was key.
-Neutral walls, light coloured linen and unstained upholstery can help a room seem lighter and brighter.
-Keep the artwork on hallways to add appeal to bare walls.
Mirrors will make rooms appear bigger and brighter with the reflected light.
-Any oddly dark corner can be lit up with a lamp.
-Give the feeling of light and brightness to your home.
Flowers, scented candles, bowls of potpourri besides a welcoming touch, they are an inviting accent to the potential buyer and give an indication of a well-kept house. Get the smell right, bad smell is a huge turn off.
TIP- An instant fix is brewing a fresh pot of coffee to create a familiar, appealing environment.
Kitchen is Key:
The kitchen is the one room that can make or break a sale. This room is at the top of many buyers’ must-haves. An Inviting Kitchen with upgraded appliances and finishes, fresh smelling, spotless, void of food scraps, heavy curry smells, cockroaches, broken pots and pans on display and any renovations glaring at you are a big No No. There is a much greater return on investment with a kitchen—the value of your house will go up.
The Bedroom Area:
This area should attract an instant calm, the feeling that one could fall off to sleep in an instant. Colours, textures of mattress, bed covers, curtains should shout out calmness. Bulky furniture which cramps the space should be removed to create a feeling of openness and space.
The Living Area:
The living and family area should want the buyer to want to stay a while, when they sit on the couch or lay their coffee cup on the table, there should be a sense of comfort and security. If they experience this, you are on a wicket.
Everyone is not a lover of animals. Make sure there is no pet smell, messy feeding bowls and secure the pet or send them for a walk to avoid any awkward situation.
Neighbours on the floor:
They can be nosey about things, simply put, it is best to blend in. When a prospective buyer is visiting, you clean up the entire floor, jazz it up a bit and always find a word of praise for your neighbours. It helps.
The sentiments attached to your property can cloud your rationale when it comes to what appeals to potential buyers. While a chipped plate from the 18th century of Madrid may bring back fond memories of eating aloo parathas drizzled with ghee with your mother, it will just be a broken plate to a house hunter. Don’t go overboard with nostalgia.
After all, you want a quick sale.
From a home to a house and back to being home again—to someone new.