Selling your home can take months when using traditional methods, but certain improvements and repairs can help speed up the process. However, it can be difficult to tell how much to spend when preparing your home for sale.
Although no two properties are the same, our handy guide will help you tick the boxes and prepare your home or a sale in a way that invites offers.
Why should I spend any money on a house I’m trying to sell?
It is important that you spend money on a house you are trying to sell (even if it is a small sum) because it will help to make your property more desirable. This means that when potential buyers come to visit your property, they will be more likely to want to buy it, and will hopefully offer a higher sum. And if you want to sell your house fast, your house being ready to move into will make the sales process much faster.
How much you will have to spend varies depending on several factors, including the current state of the property, and how much you are able to set aside.
Making your home look its best can be as simple as applying a lick of paint to certain rooms if you have already invested money into the upkeep and appearance over the years. This means some people only need to spend a few hundred, but others choose to go further by ripping out an entire kitchen if it’s in a particularly bad state.
Assuming you do not need to go as far as paying for a new kitchen or bathroom, we have some handy tips to prepare your home for sale.
10 improvements you can make today to prepare your home for a fast sale:
Visitors to your property will want to see your home and picture themselves in it, which means removing a lot of the clutter you have accumulated over the years. Selling a home is a good opportunity to put items in storage, sell them, or take them to the tip.
Bulky furniture can make a room feel small, so it can be a good idea to remove it altogether or replace it with smaller furniture.
Make the most of the living space so your home is more desirable.
Do a deep clean
No one wants to walk into a dirty home, and a deep clean can help to get rid of tiny imperfections. It is an easy way to entice potential buyers into making an offer they may otherwise hesitate to make.
Treat your house like a rented property that you want to get your deposit back for when you leave. This means cleaning appliances, removing grease from around the kitchen, steam cleaning that carpet, and even cleaning the walls to remove finger marks and other imperfections.
Add a fresh coat of paint
You may be surprised at how much of an impact a fresh coat of paint can have. Look at your home objectively, and consider what may attract buyers. Neutral colours are usually a big hit as others can picture themselves putting their stamp on their new home.
Your home should still have some personality so you don’t need to go for white in every room. Even a feature wall can help.
Make any lingering repairs
If you have a downstairs toilet which still won’t flush, a cracked tile, or a lightbulb that needs replacing – it all adds up when trying to sell your house. A home that is fully functional throughout feels as though it has been looked after with care.
Remove any signs of neglect and make any lingering repairs to ensure your home is more appealing.
Tidy up your garden
With more and more people working from home, outdoor space has never been so desirable. It doesn’t matter if it is a large lawn that needs to be freshly mown or a patio for enjoying a cup of coffee on Sunday morning, it all matters.
Weeding, pruning, and tidying your garden can have a major impact. You should also feel free to add any decorative touches that are cost-effective to make your outdoor space inviting.
Clean your windows
Whether you have a view that you want to show off or not, cleaning your windows is a cheap and excellent way of preparing your home for sale. This is all part of making a good first impression and will show potential buyers that you take pride in your home, so it is worth buying.
It is always good to depersonalise your home before a sale, but only to a certain extent. It still needs to show some signs of life… but there is a reason why new builds sell fast.
A buyer wants to picture this as their home, so remove family photos, holiday souvenirs, and collectables and put children’s artwork in the drawer for a little while.
Choose a more neutral colour scheme
Anything too outrageous can be off-putting so if you have a love for lime green colours or a colour scheme that could be an acquired taste, then it is time to go neutral.
Neutral colours work well so remove bold colours and take your stamp out of certain rooms and they will also look bigger.
A blank canvas can help a buyer to fall for your home by picturing themselves in it.
Define the purpose of each room
It can be hard to picture yourself in a house where the lounge has a big desk making it feel more like an office. Even rooms used for storage or kids’ toys all over the place can make things confusing.
Convert rooms back to their original purpose. This especially applies to bedrooms because buyers see more bedrooms as more valuable and important. This can also help make your home look bigger.
Remove clutter and big furniture that is not essential to free up floor space.
Use the right scents
When your house is on the market, remember to air each room well so it has a fresh feel to it. Certain odours are off-putting for buyers including odorous bins, the smell of cooking, pets, smoking, or dampness.
A pleasant odour can be enticing so fresh flowers are always a good idea, or candles or reed diffusers that smell of jasmine, orange, cedar, vanilla, pine, or cinnamon.
Some home improvements you shouldn’t make before selling
It is always tempting to make large improvements to your home, just to give yourself the best chance of inviting offers. However, big projects cost money, and the return on investment isn’t always worthwhile.
So, it is always best to think twice before replacing the kitchen double glazing, or fitting a new bathroom. The same goes for decking as these do not automatically increase the chances of getting a bigger offer that makes it a worthwhile hassle. After the cost of fitting these units, the bigger projects often doesn’t result in a profit.
Plus, many buyers want to put their stamp on a home. With this in mind, less can often be more.
How to decide whether or not you should spend
Start by considering your intended sell date. It is usually best to give yourself six months to make big changes to a property such as kitchen refits. Thinking of a loft conversion? Then you will need more than six months. Whether or not you should spend will therefore be influenced by the timeframe.
You don’t need to spend a lot to make your home appealing. The above tips can be completed without having to pay thousands, and the better the condition, the fewer excuses a buyer will have when it comes to renegotiating the price.
The building survey is what will determine how much there is to negotiate on. This will determine the condition of the electrics, leaks, the condition of the gutters, plumbing, central heating, floorboards, and more.
These are the improvements worth investing in if you have the budget. Otherwise, do your best and make the essential improvements above.