Selling Your Home ~ Preparing For A Viewing!


As I mentioned in my recent post my wife and I are currently in the process of selling our home. We put the house on the market on Friday and already have 2 viewings booked in for Monday & Tuesday morning! In the current housing market I don’t think you can ask for more than that. It’s not easy to get this kind of success though, it involves a lot of hard work!

We decided finally on Monday to sell the house after 5 years of debating! We wanted to get the ball rolling as quickly as possible to take advantage of the best time to sell a house in the Uk & I quite stupidly booked the estate agent to take the photos of the house on Wednesday. When I got home however, I took a look around and realised just how much needed to be done if the house was going to look its best on the photos. You don’t realise until it comes to sell a house just how many jobs you have been putting off! Bits of wallpaper peeling off the wall, chips in the paintwork, that door handle you’ve been meaning to put on but havn’t gotten around to doing. We are all so busy that if a house is livable we tend to ignore the minor imperfections!

The thing is when it comes to staging your home for estate agents photos, or better yet a viewing, all these little jobs make a huge difference!

Most people don’t want to do these jobs!

In a tough housing market like the one were enduring at the moment, buyers have their pick of houses up for sale. Imagine that you were buying a new home and viewed four in a day. Which house would you choose to buy? The one where you can just walk in and begin to live your life, or the one where you need to redo the paintwork, fit new door handles and who knows what else? I know which one I’d prefer if I had my pick of houses!

If the paintwork is bad, what else is wrong?!

You can never disregard how big a decision buying a house is! By taking out a mortgage your prospective buyer is making a massive investment, the biggest of their life. They will be looking for a house that has been loved and well maintained. If I was to walk into a house and see that the paintwork was all over the place or their were other easily rectifiable issues I would wonder what other bigger problems were lurking in the places I can’t see. If buyers can’t see that you have pride in the appearance of your home they will certainly not trust that you have maintained the more expensive aspects of the house!

Remove Potential Mental Obstacles!

This is really important when preparing for a viewing. Just because you know a problem in your house isn’t serious, doesn’t mean that your potential buyer does. A broken light bulb for example. In your eyes it is a blown light bulb. To your buyer however it could be faulty wiring that may require them to rewire the house, pull up the floorboards and redo the plaster or drywall! You can learn from this example to never assume that your buyer will know a problem is simple to fix. If it’s that simple fix it yourself to remove any potential fears from the mind of your viewer!

Remove yourself from the property

Try to set your home up in a way that your viewers can imagine themselves living in the property rather than you living in the property. You may have certain tastes that are controversial and portray these around your home. There is nothing wrong with that but remember that when you are selling a home it should not be a representation of you and your personality but instead an invitation for someone to inject themselves into the property. I’m also a believer in removing yourself from the property physically! You pay your estate agent a lot of money to sell your home, so let them do it! If you are present at the time of a viewing, your prospective buyer will imagine your life in the property rather than themselves living in the property! You also won’t want to hear any negative comments they might have, so you’re doing yourself a favour really!

In conclusion then, don’t presume your buyer will see a problem is simple to fix, if it’s that simple fix it yourself. Take pride in the appearance of your home so a buyer will know you’ve had the same amount of pride in the structural aspects. Finally allow your buyer to imagine themselves living in the property and not just view it as your home!

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4 Responses to Selling Your Home ~ Preparing For A Viewing!

  1. All good tips. As a prospective buyer, I have viewed SO many homes in that past year. It is already a stressful experience for the buyer to walk into all of these homes and imagine themselves there. We also have to make sure the price is what it should be (in our minds). Also note that we know the comps and have viewed many different options – we know what $200k looks like vs. $150k or more or less. It’s definitely a turn-off when a home is in bad condition yet the price is very high.

    A lot of foreclosures and bank-owned properties are in the worst condition but at low prices. If someone wants a high price for their home, you’d bet that we’d want the home to be in good condition. I wish all sellers were like you!

    • Money Bulldog says:

      You’re right and it’s interesting hearing it from a buyers point of view. I think for a seller it’s about getting what you can done and then balancing the condition of the house with the price you’re asking. I could spend a fortune doing everything that’s left to do to my house and make it immaculate but that would then bump the price up drastically. And not everyone wants to pay a premium for a house thats been done up to somebody else’s taste! It’s a balancing act!

  2. When I sold my house in the UK the estate agents were amazed how move in ready the house was. I never intended to sell nor did I ever believe my future wife would be a Canadian.
    I put a lot of work into my house over the years. I fit a new kitchen, bathrooms, floors, deck, heating and cooling system. You name it I did it. I purchased the house in the state where I needed to renovate it but I paid a cheaper price for it.

    I suppose I was lucky when I sold the house because the new owner has tried to sell twice now with no success for less than she bought it for. With that being said it’s imperative to make sure the house is in top notch condition. There is a lot of competition these day. Great post mate.
    Cheers mate,

    • Money Bulldog says:

      Sounds like you got out at the right time! Everything you said just made me think of my latest post about the argument for renting. If you’d have met your wife a few years later owning your own place could have really limited your options or made things more difficult.

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