You’ve been selling your home all wrong – six things you need to do NOW to bag quick dealMarch 22, 2022
THE quicker you sell, the quicker you can move into your new home.
Our property experts Rea Hill and Tonya Barnard – also known as the Property Twins – reveal how to get a deal fast.
They have decades of experience between them buying, selling and renting out homes.
We will be featuring their advice and top tips as part of a six-part series. Send your questions to [email protected].
They've already covered issues such as common mistakes first-time buyers make while bagging a home.
Here’s what they say about how to get your house flying off the market.
If you thought buying a home was stressful as a first-time buyer, then wait until you want to sell it.
At this point you’re in a property chain – which means you need to sell your home in order to buy another.
That means if a sale falls through on your house, the next property you are eyeing up to bag could slip through your fingers unless you find another buyer quickly.
Here’s our six tips to make sure you can get a deal over line in no time.
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De-clutter your home
Nothing makes a house a home like putting up ornaments, trinkets and family photos.
But you might not realise it could be driving away bidders if you leave them up in your home.
Buyers want the rooms to feel light, airy and full of space – they don’t want to feel like they’re at their nan’s house.
We were trying to sell a property for an old couple, who had ornaments, trinkets and souvenirs everywhere which made everything look dark and dreary.
But buyers were really put off by it – and the couple weren’t getting offers.
We persuaded them to take everything down for the time being while viewings were being held, and once they decluttered, it sold smoothly.
If they had left it all up though, their home would have been on the market much longer.
Maximise curb appeal
Believe it or not, most buyers will make up their mind over whether they want to make an offer for the house or not as soon as they arrive at the front door.
That means a simple tidy up of your front garden, clearing all the kids toys away, could make all the difference.
With this in mind, when Tonya previously bought a run down cottage to do up, she made sure to put a lot of effort into making the outside look as homely as possible and bursting with character.
She put in a new latched wooden gate, and she matched the colour of the front door with the garage.
The outside of the house looked beautiful when she had finished – it sold nearly straight away, but it wouldn’t have gone as quick had she left the house looking dreary outside.
Your neighbours count
It’s not just your home you have to worry about when selling up – it’s next door too.
If your neighbour is prone to leaving piles of rubbish outside, kids toys lying around, or their fence has knocked down into your side, it’s worth having a word.
All these things can make the area look scruffy and put off potential buyers.
There was one time Rea was trying to sell a house for a family, and noticed next door still had their Christmas lights up but it was summer.
That’s exactly the kind of bad signal buyers can get when they first turn up at a house – it can look really scruffy.
Rea told her clients that they should talk to next door and ask them to take down their lights to create a better impression.
They took the lights down and were fine about it – talking about these things can be awkward but the key is to do it respectfully.
Do your research on estate agencies
Estate agents help you set the value of your home, market it, hustle and arrange viewings and manage negotiations to get you a deal over the line.
It’s important to do your research and pick one that is recommended – otherwise you might struggle to shift your home.
Recently, Rea viewed a property she wanted to buy.
She called the estate agent selling the house to make an offer and left a voicemail but never got a call back.
That should be really worrying for the family selling that house, because they just missed out on an offer that was tens of thousands of pounds higher than the asking price.
They could have sold their home that day – but missed it because the agent couldn’t follow up.
Prepare all the paperwork
It’s really important to be ahead of the game and have all the paperwork in place while you’re holding viewings.
That includes paperwork on gas, electrics, building works for example.
I was recently selling a home on behalf of a client that took weeks longer than it should have because their solicitor didn’t flag important documents needed.
Because the flat was a leasehold property, the seller needed to provide a bit of paperwork called a leaseholder’s management pack – that includes everything on the lease length of the property, the ground rent, and service charge.
Sellers have to purchase this pack and pass it onto the buyer – but it is the responsibility of the solicitor to flag this, which they didn’t.
It created a major hold up, but luckily the sale didn’t fall through.
Check the advert
If you want to sell your home quickly for the best price possible, make sure that your estate agent has made your listing sing.
That means you’ll want to sell the unique selling point of your property in the advert – which could be that it's close to the station, or has cute character features like wooden beams.
If the estate agent fails to hard sell your property in the advert, then it won’t shift – so it’s worth looking at a copy of the listing before it goes live.
Our estate agency, Victoria Louise, once had a terraced town house on the books located on the same street where an identical looking property was being sold by another estate agency.
It was struggling to sell, while ours sold almost immediately.
The family who owned it came to us asking why we managed to sell the two houses while theirs was still on the market.
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We knew it was because we had put more effort in on the advert.
We used phrases like "period home that is slap bang in the city", which made it more appealing to buyers.
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