You’ll undoubtedly have heard the expression “Kerb appeal,” the makeover you give your house to make it attractive and give potential buyers a warm, positive feeling about your property before they’ve even stepped through the gate. It’s something agents and vendors bang on about all the time, but how can you get it, and how do you keep that positive feeling going up to and beyond exchanging contracts?
The fundamental thing about kerb appeal is making the house and garden look like the sort of place the buyer can see themselves living in without having to lift a finger. Even if they think they’re looking for a ‘fixer-upper’ most buyers will be daunted, to say the least if the property looks like a building site which has been abandoned or worse yet, a derelict which is rotting before their eyes.
So What Do You Do To Make That Unforgettable First Impression?
It’s a truism that you have to speculate to accumulate, so you’re naturally going to have to put money and effort into the appearance of your house if you want to get the best price for it, but naturally you don’t want to waste money on baubles which won’t make a difference to the impression you make or price you finally achieve.
Prune The Hedges, Jetwash The Garden Wall And Fix The Fences.
An Englishman’s home is his castle, and the first line of defence is your garden. To feel safe and secure a good fence, a well maintained hedge or wall is key. And it’s not just aesthetic either. Overgrown hedges and trees afford burglars an opportunity to lurk without being seen, and a place to throw your property while they go and get a car to carry off their swag.
Moving up the garden path (which you’ve weeded, jetwashed and repointed, obviously), take a look at the house itself. How’s the paintwork and pointing looking? Filling and repainting the window and door frames makes the house look happier straight away. Again, your jetwasher can come in handy here too as you blast the lichen and moss off of your brickwork, and all the nooks and crannies. If your house is painted or rendered, ensure that it’s clean and any major damage is looked at.
Make Sure The Roof Is Proof
If your roof or guttering is less than perfect people will notice and it’ll take thousands off of the price they offer, and it is leverage you can easily pre-empt. Now, you don’t want to go up on the roof yourself, but a professional roofer will cost less than the amount you’d likely lose when bartering the selling price. Getting the guttering cleared and repainted once the roof is done should be your next priority (just in case they drop anything which could damage it). Good guttering isn’t just cosmetic, it directs many gallons of rainwater off of the walls and into the drains, which prevents penetrating damp under the eaves and flooding in the garden.
Look At CCTV To Keep Unwanted Visitors Away
Think about security too. Would you consider installing a CCTV system? As soon as a buyer sees that the house is protected from all angles with home security, including CCTV and looks nice too, they will start to feel secure just walking up to the front door. If they feel that the property is tended to, secure against the weather and intruders then you’ve just aced ‘kerb appeal’. But don’t stop there.
Walk Through The Home Looking At It Like New
It’s hard to see a lot of problems for yourself when you’ve become used to seeing them every day. You’ve got used to the chipped paintwork, tatty wallpaper and damaged plaster, and you don’t want to notice, since you want to sell the property anyway, so these little jobs get overlooked.
Get an honest opinion. If you’ve a friend, relative or colleague at work whose opinion you trust but who hasn’t been to your home before to come around and give you an honest appraisal. Even if they have terrible taste in home décor they should be able to identify areas which could easily slip your mind.
The hallway will be one of the busiest parts of the house. Everything and everyone who comes and goes generally has to pass through the hall, meaning that paint gets scuffed and chipped, the carpets get muddy and worn, but it’s also the first part of your home people are going to see. Stripping and repapering and repainting is going to be too much effort, but sanding, scrubbing and touching up paintwork has an immediate improving effect. Wallpaper can be reasonably easily fixed with a little adhesive if you’ve kept a spare role of patterned or coloured paper, or patched and painted over if the paper allows it.
Reception rooms and bedrooms just need to be thoroughly cleaned and tidied. Putting all of your possessions which you don’t use regularly into storage is a really good idea before any move as it allows you to take a lot of the pressure of moving off. It also gives you a good chance to think about whether you really need a lot of the stuff you have in your home or whether it would be a good idea to declutter and dispose. Once you’ve cleared a space, deep clean the furniture, paint the walls in neutral, light colours as they give a sense of space and steam clean the carpets.
Kitsch Up The Kitchen
The real key room to spend time and effort on upgrading is the kitchen. Kitchen appliances take so much hard use, get dirty, greasy, covered in food, and abuse they are the first to show real signs of wear. It’s not necessary to replace all your white goods, the cupboards, floor and tiling, but it’s definitely worth money to look at ways of improving them.
Torn up vinyl, scratched lino, or broken tiles make your kitchen floor look neglected, unhygienic and uncared for. If you can roll it up and throw it out then do! Replacing it with a new cheap flooring solution will always look better than an old, worn dirty one. And remember, you only have to live with it until the house sells.
You don’t need to replace your cooker, washing machine, fridge etc, but getting them professionally cleaned will make them look like new. Clean your cabinets, straightening wonky cupboard doors and replacing handles with a modern set gives an instant spruce-up. Repairing scratched, chipped countertops which have peeling, burned Formica for surfaces cut especially for the sale will ensure your kitchen look like new.
Make Spaces Modern And Functional
To make your home look modern, up to the minute and well maintained don’t only look at your furniture and fittings. Look at your tech too. It was found recently that poor wifi can knock thousands of pounds off of what people are prepared to offer, however, with a little foresight it is possible to get stable reliable wifi throughout the home very easily.
And since your superfluous possessions are in storage, why not continue to maximise the space by mounting TVs on walls instead of having them free-standing. It’s a modern look which compliments any home, frees up floor space and means that kids or pets won’t be able to damage them or knock them over.
Unfortunately many buyers don’t have vision, so they can’t overlook what you already own, and you need to direct their notice toward the opportunities your hose holds for them. Give your home a touch of up-to-the-moment luxury and they’ll want to buy in, notwithstanding you’ll be taking everything with you and leaving an empty shell behind.
Make A Clean Breast Of The Bathroom
This household Utopia should be extended to the bathroom too. New vinyl flooring, cleaning the grouting, painting over outdated unfashionable tiles are all quick fixes you can take care of yourself. Replacing a shower curtain with a brand new, neutral one, along with matching towels, mirrors and new lighting can help to turn your smallest room into a mini spa. Find the best glass shower door on this site and get it installed at home.
Other details you could attend to if you have time and are handy is a replacement set of taps, shower hose and head. Finally, make sure it smells of flowers and herbs, and not bleach when buyers are scheduled to come. Remember, you’re selling a fantasy!
The garden, even in rainy old England, should still be considered almost like another room. If it’s overgrown or full of kids’ play equipment when people come to view they’re going to be put off, so put the toys into storage, cut the grass and cut back the shrubbery. However, don’t be tempted to overdo the garden renovations. You’ll spend forever at it, and whoever moves in is just as likely to tear it all up and start again. Instead, just make sure it’s tidy and presentable.