Easy Ways to Make (and Keep) Your Home Ready for Potential Buyers

Thu 03 May 2018

Making your home spick and span for potential buyers is fun when you start but keeping it that way – potentially for weeks and even months – is the hard part. So consider what a purchaser might want to see when they step into your home and do your best to give it to them without spending a fortune. These tips and tricks might help.

Double up
If a bedroom can house a double bed, make sure there’s one in it – perhaps you could bring in a sofa-bed from elsewhere in the house. It might not be obvious to viewers that a room is big enough for a double, so don’t leave them in any doubt. 
A double room with minimal storage might well win out over a single with lots. Squeeze in a big bed and your boxroom becomes a double.

Work a home office
Proving your property is suitable for home working should involve more than putting a laptop on a shelf and sticking a stool underneath. If you have a study space that works, then show it off. Clear out the clutter and move everything that doesn’t signify it’s an office to another room or storage area. 
If you’ve put in electrical sockets and charging ports, make that obvious by clearing the area around them. Similarly, show there’s a natural light source, good provision for shade, and task lighting, as well as adequate storage and desk space. 
If you don’t have a home office, could you create one in the corner of a room or on a landing? Home working is becoming increasingly common and could well be an important consideration for anyone who views your property.

Reserve shelves for display
No one wants to walk into a bathroom and look at a squeezed tube of toothpaste – least of all someone who might buy your house – so store all those day-to-day bits and bobs out of sight in an easy-to-access box for as long as your home’s on the market. 
Use open shelves for decorative pieces that ooze style and bring freshness to your bathroom. Restricting yourself to only two or three pretty pieces per shelf not only looks good, but suggests the bathroom has storage space to spare.

Half lay a table
Position tablemats so it’s easy for potential buyers to picture how the space could function for dining and entertaining. It’s not always clear how many people will fit around a dining table and a hint at table settings will help. 
Add a fruit bowl or flowers to lift the feel a little, but don’t get carried away. A few choice pieces will be easy to position and then remove, or even live with for a while after viewers have left; a fully laid table will not.

Make something of your landing
Look about your home for dead spots that don’t seem to be doing anything, decoratively or otherwise. A well-placed rug, beautiful chair or stylish light fitting can add a sense of place and a point of focus to those zones between one main area of a property and the next. 
Little touches to seemingly less important areas like these can make a big difference to the overall impression of a house viewing. After all, sometimes it’s the transitions that people will remember.

Banish bunks
In a kids’ room with bunk beds, you’ll be relying on others to be able to envisage the space in a different configuration. If you can, swap bunks for singles. Some designs can be converted, so you may be able to transform the room with no additional expense. 
A twin room has a natural decorative appeal and symmetry, so make the most of that. Bed designs that aren’t obviously for children will also let potential buyers picture the space being used for others more easily. Help with this by investing in attractive storage bins for toys and books that will make it easy for kids to quickly tidy up when a potential buyer comes to view your home.

Proliferate with pots
If your garden is small or you don’t have one at all, make whatever you do have as beautiful as possible. Line patios, outdoor windowsills, corners and steps with pots of evergreens, flowering plants and palms. 
Introduce as much greenery and shrubbery as you can muster and the lack of flowerbeds won’t be so obvious. Consider varieties that are fragrant, and grow fruits and herbs in pots, too.

Create a welcome
In your bid to make your home more appealing, don’t forget the look of your property before viewers have even stepped over the threshold. Win them over at the door with a scrubbed and smart entrance you can be proud of. 
Dress it up with low-maintenance container shrubs and a cheery doormat and consider upgrading door furniture and house numbers if they look a bit tired. 
Position potted bedding plants at the foot of steps and add anything else that will bring a bit of personality and charm to that all-important first impression.

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