After death and divorce, moving house is the next stressful thing that happens in our lives. We all do it, for any number of reasons, and we all suffer the same pressures. However what can alleviate the pain is a swift sale… so we all should do whatever we can to make our houses look the best when potential buyers come a-knocking.
Having said that, it’s amazing how many people have just swallowed all the cheap lines about having bread baking, and a pot of coffee boiling, to sell the ambiance of the place as the doorbell goes. What many people have forgotten, however – and what will therefore give you the edge – is not only the interior of your house and all its commensurate aromas… but what lies outside.
The experts will tell you that you should have blinds and curtains fully open when you have people inspect the property, and that sunlight brightens up a room, and can given give the impression of more space. However, you can open all the windows, and have fresh air blowing through the rooms… but what about the other side of the window? Many people simply forget the garden when they come to sell, when it really should be considered another room of the house, and accorded the same attention.
Your house needs to have ‘kerb appeal’… in other words, it needs to make a first impression as soon as the buyer pulls up at the house, not when they walk through the front door. So that means looking after the garden, front and back.
So here’s a 10-point guide for what to do to the outside areas of the property, to give you the best chance of making a sale. Take time out to look around your outdoor areas, then read over this checklist. And remember… you only have one chance to make a first impression!
1) Critical analysis
As you take your time to view your outdoor areas, also compare that against houses in the neighbourhood that you have always liked. What have they done that you could do?
2) Front Garden
Having made that survey, let’s start at the front. Again, the frontage of your house, and its front garden, are essentially the face of the property…and looks can be everything. So tidy the front garden, get rid of the weeds and maybe plant some attractive flowers in strategic places. If you have a front lawn, make sure it’s mown. Better yet, we have another suggestion for your lawn (which we will detail later!)
There’s nothing like a lick of paint, so have a look at the woodwork – in terms of the door and window frames – and consider a paint job.
4) Paving stones
In terms of both the drive (if you have one) as well as pathways and patios, check for dodgy stones. There’s nothing worse than watching a prospective buyer trip over in the garden. Never mind the sale, you may find yourself with a lawsuit…
Make sure the hedges are trimmed and look cared for.
Again, make sure they are in good repair and look ship-shape and Bristol fashion.
Simple one, but make sure the dustbins are put away, as they can have a negative impact on a buyer’s perception of your property.
8) The lawn
This one is key. Of course (depending on the time of the year) you need to remove leaves, strim the edges and make sure it’s carefully mown. Equally, you may have always hated your lawn and found it to be unattractive and unmanageable, in which case… why not take the opportunity to replace it with an artificial lawn from Cheshire Artificial Grass? Selling a house can be an incredible busy – and as we have seen, stressful – time, so why not remove the encumbrance of the lawn, make your garden look much tidier, and also turn that into a sales point for the property? Artificial grass can not only save time for you, but for the new tenant too, giving them time to get settled and enjoy the garden.m
9) Tidy up
Once the lawn is tidy, tidy the rest of the garden. Put away the gardening tools and children’s toys, get rid of the garden waste, sweep up and make the most of any seating area to highlight this notion of an extra ‘outdoor room’.
10) Final check
Just before the viewing, take time out to make another tour of the garden, to make sure it is tidy and free from litter.
So there you go. Take these steps and you have done what you can to paint the most attractive face on your property. And when you sell your property, and spend some of the proceeds on a well-deserved break!