Preparing to sell your house
Preparing to sell your house can be a testing time
Preparing to sell your house can be difficult. It can be hard to remove yourself and look at it from the point of view of someone who has never seen it before. It can also be difficult to decide just how tidy you need to go, before the place looks too Spartan. And when you’re tidying, where do you store your stuff? It was often there in the first place because you had run out of storage space in the cupboards.
By planning properly, and making a few tactical changes, you’ll be able to make your house much more appealing to potential buyers, and hopefully, sell it more quickly as a result.
To help you to do this, here at Store First, we’ve decided to put together our top tips for preparing to sell your house.
Become a mercenary
Look at your house from the outside. I mean really look at it, not just in the way you mostly ignore it as you walk up your drive to let yourself in. Look at it the way you would look at someone else’s house – be judgemental. Think about the impression the house gives you, does it make you want to go inside? Is it welcoming? If not, here is your first task.
Once you’re at the front door, don’t just open it and walk straight in. Linger for a while. Imagine what your first impression of the house will be as a potential buyer steps into the front door. Again, if it doesn’t welcome you in, then make changes until it does.
The aim is to get your house to look comfortable and welcoming, yet almost to the point where it looks like nobody lives in it at the same time, difficult, but this is the aim of the game.
De-personalise your house
This might seem a strange one, but pack up and store your family photographs, potential buyers might not see past them, and you don’t want them to be distracted from the house itself. You want them to be imagining their photographs on the walls, rather than focusing on yours.
Rather than making the buyer ask what kind of people live in the house, you want them to be able to see themselves living there.
Remove yourself from your home
By this, I don’t necessarily mean you can’t be there when people are viewing the house – although some people prefer not to be – what I mean is, disassociate yourself.
Stop thinking of the place as your home, and begin looking at it as merely a house, a product that you’re trying to sell. Remember that the house won’t be yours for long and make sure that you’ve come to terms with that.
We all know this from experience; people collect a remarkable amount of junk. Try to be selective. If you’ve not used it for a year, the likelihood is that you don’t need it. And if you don’t need it, why not donate it or throw it away?
Remove your books from your bookcases, store away your ornaments and knick-knacks, clean your kitchen from top to bottom. Doing all this not only makes your house more presentable, but it also gives you a head start on the packing that you’ll need to do sooner or later, anyway.
Rent a self-storage unit
The houses that look better with more furniture and more personal clutter are few and far between. Get rid of furniture that clutters your house up; especially the pieces of furniture that are in the way of the natural ‘paths’ through your house. Your bookcases are likely to be empty, as you’ve begun the arduous task of packing away some of your things for the move, so store the bookcases as well as the books. Take out extra leaves from your dining table, if you can, to make your dining room look bigger. Leave just enough furniture in each room to enable viewers to imagine themselves and their furniture in your house.
Where better to make sure all of the things that you need out of your house, while you transition from selling to sold, are safe, than a self-storage unit?
Make minor repairs
Preparing to sell your house is never complete without giving those tired areas, that you’ve been putting up with for a while, a face-lift.
Before having people round to view your home, replace any cracked tiles or worktops. Replace the light bulbs that have gone. Fix leaky faucets, re-hang any doors that have dropped and don’t close properly, fix drawers that jam. Patch up any paint that’s been chipped or marked, and if you have any vividly coloured walls, consider painting them in neutral tones – you don’t want to be remembered as the house with the pink bathroom.
Make sure the house is spotless!
When you’re preparing to sell your home, there are few things that are more important than this.
Imagine yourself viewing a house with dry toothpaste caked on the sink and floors that need hoovering; your first impression isn’t going to be one that makes you want to buy that house.
Do a thorough dusting of the house, make sure there are no cobwebs. Hoover the house as soon before the viewing takes place as possible. Bleach grubby grouting; re-grout if necessary. Clean your windows, inside and out. Make sure taps and mirrors are sparkling. Replace tired-looking rugs and hang up fresh towels. And, make sure that you clean and air out any areas that smell a bit musty – stick an air freshener in cupboards and wardrobes if necessary.
Make your house look great from the outside
Granted, we’ve touched on this already, but it is important enough to go back to – just like your house will be if you take heed of all of these tips.
Make sure you mow your lawn, paint your window trims if they need it. Weed your flower beds, you could even consider planting some yellow flowers (yellow evokes a buying emotion), and definitely trim your bushes – make your garden invite viewers down your path to the door of your house. Also, make sure that if you have a sign with your house number on, it is visible and clean.
Make it as easy as possible for people to want to buy your house
If you follow all the tips in this blog, then you stand yourself in a good position when it comes to attracting people to buy your house.
And, if you need space to store things while you’re in the process of selling, or after you have sold and are waiting to move, then why not give your local Store First a call? We have self-storage centres in Barnsley, Blackburn, Burnley, Derby, Ellesmere Port, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Northampton, Nottingham, Preston, Rochdale, St Helens and Wakefield.
All of our self-storage centres offer a free pick-up service as well. What could be easier?