The Smell of Success
It's not always just the appearance of your house that sells. Scents are very powerful in influencing a person's emotions - in a good or bad way! We can all imagine the bad smells such as greasy cooking and other stale smells that are best not to go in to. However there are some smells that can influence your buyer in the right way. Fresh bread and most freshly baked goods are often a winner, allegedly men respond best to cinnamon.
Fresh flowers are another way to improve the ambience of your home, not only do they smell nice but they also bring colour to the home. Selling your home can be a busy time, especially with lots of tidying up to be done before each house viewing so you may want to arrange for flowers to be delivered on a weekly basis or just pick them up each week with your weekly shop.
Animal odours can be a big turn off, make sure cat or dog food is out of the house when the viewing is taking place and move pet beds outside to. If you are aware of the odours there's a good chance you'll do something about it but when you have lived with pets for a while you stop noticing their smells. Ask an honest friend or a neighbour to look around your house and give you feedback as a prospective buyer, you need their constructive feedback.
A sleek, modern home can often pull off bright contrasting colours but to meet more of you prospective buyer's tastes it may be better to go down the route of warm, neutral colours. That allows people viewing your house to visualise how they would have it, people tend to have a lack of imagination and find it hard to think of your house in any other way than how you present it to them. You can always put your items in storage while you decorate so they are out of the way and don't get damaged.
I guess as a bit of a disclaimer we should point out we're not trying to sell our "home" so that's why some of our facilities are in bright orange and blue, like our self storage in Taunton!
You may love your porcelain dogs on the mantle piece but they may not be to everyone's liking. Reducing the amount of ornamental or non essential items in your house can really improve the feel of the home. Decluttering can give the impression your house is bigger and also reduces the items you need to dust before each visit. It's not wasted work either, items can be boxed up ready for when you do sell and if you don't have room in your house for the items you can always store them with us.
The Americans call it Curb Appeal, I'm not really sure what the UK version of it is but it's all about people judging your house from outside, or a book by its cover to use an English phrase. Often before a viewing, potential buyers will drive past houses for sale and make their mind up before they see the inside. This may not be deciding they'll buy a house but they may write some off. If you have a front garden make sure it is well looked after, clean your windows and if anything outside needs painting get it done. Even little things like your door mat or your door bell can speak volumes. Just like inside your house it's good to declutter the outside as well. Stand back and take a look at your house, could the caravan on the drive go in storage, could the children's bike and other toys be kept around the back? It all helps with 'Curb Appeal'.
The key rooms people look at when viewing a house are the kitchen, bathroom and master bedroom. So treat these rooms to special attention. Make them gender neutral, pink fluffy bathrobes in the bathroom or black sheets in the bedroom aren't appealing to all. A bathroom is really important to be spotless. Fresh soap bars, cleaned toilets, sinks and baths are also important, they should be 5* hotel clean. If you have built in wardrobes then a potential buyer will look inside them so tidy them. If you've got paperwork you need to hide, put it in the bed under the covers - it's about the only place they won't look!
The Box Room
Whether this is the extra bedroom you don't use, the dining room or the study make sure it is cleared. You may not have made the best use of that room but they may be reliant on it. They need to be able to visualise themselves living there and making use of that space.
In essence you need to create a wow factor, create a place where they would like to live. Stage each room as near to a perfect setting as possible, make bathrooms clean and tidy, lounges warm and welcoming, make kitchens feel like they'd like to cook their and make the house the one they want to choose.