We’ll mostly cover advice for selling your property, but the same tips apply to landlords. Since it’s hard to see your home with fresh eyes, it can help to ask a friend or family member to suggest improvements – just make sure you don’t take offence if they ask you to ditch the garden gnomes.
How to present your home (step by step)
This is a task best tackled over several weeks. If you’re pushed for time or money, then you can make quite a difference within a few days on a shoestring budget. However, remember that this is an investment. In most cases, you’ll receive a decent return for your hard work.
Let’s start from the outside and work our way in.
Take a good look from the curb
Stand outside the property. Does it have appeal? Although you can’t easily change the external look of your home, this is your chance to tick off those tasks that keep slipping down the list (it’s okay, we’re not judging). If you’re looking for inspiration, here are some easy wins:
- Pull up any weeds and mow the lawn/trim back mature shrubs and trees.
- Move your wheelie bins out of sight or behind a screen.
- Clean the windows and clear the gutters.
- Remove any rubbish or litter that might have blown in from elsewhere.
If you want to go to town on the outside, you could even consider painting or replacing the front door. Lastly, you might want to wash any cars that are parked directly outside the property.
Then clean your house from top to bottom
Pull out the yellow Marigold gloves and roll up your sleeves. Clean all surfaces and behind large pieces of furniture. Catch the cobwebs, vacuum the carpets and generally picture that scene from Mary Poppins to make sure the place is spotless.
- Clean all surfaces and floors throughout.
- Deep clean the kitchen and inside the oven.
- Replace mouldy grout or sealant in the bathroom.
- Replace any spotlights that are not working.
If you can think of better things to do with your weekend or you have some kind of allergy to cleaning products, you could always hire a professional cleaning company to do the legwork.
Next, work your way through each room
People need to be able to imagine living in your property. So, help them out by decluttering and packing away non-essentials. The idea is to remove excess stuff without making the rooms feel as soulless as an airport waiting lounge.
- Pack up (or at least tidy away) items such as books, children’s toys, unnecessary furniture and out-of-season clothing.
- Decorate rooms in neutral colours and remove anything that screams “personality”.
- Get handy with the DIY and fix cracks in plaster, broken tiles and any other cosmetic repairs.
- Consider upgrading the kitchen or refacing cabinets.
- Store large appliances (like that sandwich toaster you haven’t used since forever) out of sight to increase available worktop space.
- Dress any bare windows with curtains and blinds.
If it makes you feel any better, think of these tasks as a head-start on packing. The end result will be a much lighter and more spacious home.
Before you have your home photographed and put on the market, you can help to make the interior feel more inviting by turning on a few lamps, picking up a few house plants, displaying fresh flowers, buying some reed diffusers, and changing the bathroom towels and putting fresh linen on the beds. If you are using a professional estate agent, they can advise you on how to present your home for the best possible sales photographs.
In our experience as estate agents in East London, potential buyers feel much more at ease when a professional agent is showing them around rather than the owner. We often know the buyer’s circumstances (and therefore positives to mention about the house), it helps them to imagine living in the property without the existing owners being present, and they’re also more likely to give us honest feedback after the viewing. If you’re a homeowner or landlord in East London, email firstname.lastname@example.org for a valuation and how to prepare your property ready to put it on the market.
See our full list of property advice articles in our Knowledge Centre.
Keatons has been based in East London for over 20 years and has since expanded to the north and south of the city. We have an outstanding Trust Pilot rating from customers and we are known for helping sellers and landlords achieve the best possible market price for their property. To find out more, visit our website.