Are you planning or considering a move this Spring? If so and you’re not sure just where to begin, then I hope this month’s guide will be of use:
One of the most common questions I’m often asked as an Estate Agent is ‘what home improvements can I make to my home before I sell?’
What Improvements Can I Make to My Home Before I Sell?
If you are looking to improve your home with a new kitchen/bathroom, conservatory, or driveway these can be expensive additions. Most people, understandably want their own taste reflected in their home and if your improvement is what you desire and it will enhance your enjoyment, then it is money well spent. However, if you are hoping to get that money back in the re-sale value of your home, this may only partially happen, if at all! In reality, most people looking to buy your home will in turn have their own tastes and will very often change simple things such as paint colours and floor coverings or even those ‘big ticket’ items such as bathrooms and kitchens, regardless of their age or condition.
You will of course, in most cases, increase the value of your property with a conservatory or a loft/garage conversion but you may not increase or even re-coup the full costs back. When a surveyor is valuing your home they will be looking at similar properties in the area, (often referred to as ‘local comparables’) and what they sold for, the surveyor will need to justify the price that your buyers have offered especially if a bank is lending, keep in mind they are valuing like for like ‘bricks and mortar’ whilst also, to some extent, additions to the living space, plot size, amount of parking but rarely do they look at a 10-year-old kitchen/bathroom against a new one and certainly not décor and floorcoverings. Your number one aim is to attract buyers and of course, a new drive, new windows or other improvements discussed above will certainly do that, however, there are some simpler and more cost-effective ways you can employ to show your home off to the best effect.
Firstly, keep rooms tidy and clutter-free as much as possible, which is essential for great photos and, in turn, home viewings. Buy some fresh flowers, if you are selling in the Spring or Summer maybe add some hanging baskets by the entrance door. Another great tip I picked up many years ago was to ‘Become your Buyer’, by this I mean stand at the roadside with your partner or friend and pretend you are seeing your home for the first time, I guarantee you will see at least 2 or 3 things that you will wish to mend, clean or tidy, first impressions count so getting that first view of the outside as good as you can get is crucial (So no uncut grass/mucky driveway/dirty entrance door/Halloween style cobwebs etc etc).
If you have a hectic and busy home full of ‘stuff’ you could also investigate storage options either at home or at a local specialist storage facility. I can recommend a local storage company and/or a de-cluttering service, simply contact me for more information. Keep internal and external décor tidy, neat and clean.
Have an up-to-date Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) which is also a legal requirement if you are selling a home in England. You can book an EPC assessor online yourself or I can of course check if you have an in-date certificate and if not, arrange one on your behalf.
Remember, this is your home, probably your biggest asset, what attracted you to the property when you brought it? There is a good chance this will also attract your eventual buyer too.
In the past, when making improvements for your own use, you will have been content with the money spent and these may well make your home more attractive to buyers but remember, you may not get all the money back. So before making any changes, when planning or considering to sell, it is well worth giving me a call personally to talk through any questions you may have and what you could already achieve pricewise, I’m always happy to chat on the phone or better still visit your home and discuss things, pressure free over a coffee (black no sugar please 😊) ,it could save you time and most importantly, unnecessary extra expense.
I hope this month’s article has been of use, next month I will discuss the growing popularity of using local businesses in-home moving and the importance of a personal tailored service.
Derek Edwards is an independent estate agent with over 20 years’ experience in both central and north Essex, working with his wife Rachel they offer a personal home selling service looking after their clients personally throughout the home sale and purchase journey.
Derek and Rachel have four children all of which are now grown up. ‘We formed the business as we felt that the traditional estate agency model is outdated and centred too much on the agent and not on the customer, we only work with a limited number of clients at any one time, giving 100% attention to their needs. We carry out all viewings , speak to all viewers for effective feedback and after agreeing a sale to the best buyer for our vendors, continue with full sales progression through to exchange, completion and key handover. We work with local businesses wherever possible, which are chosen only if they can offer the same high service levels as ourselves. We work from our home office and are available 7 days a week and outside traditional office hours, so are ready when our clients need us most’.