1) Choose an estate agent who is a member of the RICS or National Association of Estate Agents as both organisations have a strict code of practice.
2) Never use an estate agent who is not professionally qualified to give you advice, remember your home will be the largest value asset you will ever acquire.
3) Do not consider these virtual ‘trust to luck’ selling website engines to sell your home, as basically there is no expertise or advice and when a problem arises, you are on your own.
4) Dress your home for selling. First impressions are important. Stand opposite your home and look at the street scene. Does it look inviting?
5) Look at the adjacent neighbours. Are your neighbours’ gardens tidy? If not, have a chat to them.
6) When a viewing is arranged, make sure the driveway is free from any cars. The average family has two to three cars in the household so they will be looking for room on the drive.
7) Internally, ensure the home is always clean and tidy – de-clutter if necessary. Create space even if it means placing surplus furniture in the garage.
8) Buyers like light and airy rooms so switch on your lights and dress the home with simple items such as flowers and fruit in the kitchen.
9) Ensure there are no pungent smells from last night’s dinner. Pet smells can also put off viewers. A smoker’s home that has a nicotine smell is a real turn off.
10) If it is winter, put the heating on so your home feels warm and inviting. If possible, don’t have your pets in the home when potential buyers come around. The same applies to family members, visitors and trades people.
11) Remember that neutral colour schemes appeal to the widest market.
12) If the hall or stairs carpet is stained and tatty, it may be worth renewing it. Bear in mind that the hall is the first area viewers see.
13) In the rear garden, jet-wash the patio, cut the lawn and make sure the boundary fence is not down or in disrepair.
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