First impressions count double when it comes to trying to sell a home. To give yourself the best chance of achieving a sale for the best price possible, your home will need to lure buyers in rather than actively turning them away.
But what are the ways in which you can make a great first impression when prospective buyers come to view your property? Below, we take a quick look…
Get the exterior right
The outside of your home is the first thing buyers will see. And, more often than not, it will be the front of your property that provides the very first impression.
Recently, Anglian Home Improvements and landscaping expert Gena Lorraine from Fantastic Services analysed 500 photographs using the popular Instagram hashtag #doorstagram to reveal the top exterior trends. They found that colourful doors – in particular blue ones – are an excellent way of making a home stand out from the crowd and adding a touch of personality to a property.
While blue was the most popular colour, accounting for more than a third of the most photographed doors on Instagram, this was followed by red and black with 10% each.
The findings also revealed that interesting accessories – such as Victorian door knockers and black ironwork handles - are often popular, while adding lights to the front of a home can help from an aesthetic and practical point of view.
They allow people to see your house more clearly if they happen to view it in the dark, which is a bigger likelihood now the nights are drawing in and we're getting closer to winter. Outside lights can also help to shine a light on your garden or driveway's best features and accentuate any borders or flowerbeds you have.
Old-school, Victorian-style lanterns are a popular choice, while energy-saving LED bollard or post lights are an excellent way of achieving a classy finish and improving your green credentials at the same time.
Keep your garden in pristine condition
If you have a front garden, it's vital that it's kept in excellent condition the whole year round. It might be easier to neglect it in the autumn and winter months, when the weather is colder and the days shorter, but an unmaintained garden won't give off a good first impression – quite the opposite.
It's one of the easiest ways to get viewings off to a good start and, best of all, doesn't take much time, effort or money to achieve. Look after any plants you have, prune your flowers, remove any weeds, ensure the lawn and hedges are neatly trimmed, and clear away any leaves. It may also be worth your while purchasing some hanging baskets, planting some new border flowers or installing a window box to give your garden that extra wow factor.
If you have a driveway instead of a front garden, it's equally important that you maintain it to a good standard. Make sure it's clean, free of leaves and in excellent condition. For many buyers, it will be a key selling point – with guaranteed parking spaces so sought-after – which means it's something you need to get right.
Ensure your kerb appeal is up to scratch
Your home's ‘kerb appeal’ is essentially what it looks like from the outside – it’s your properties smile or warm welcome, if you will. If it doesn't look the part (in other words, if the exterior of your home looks shabby, scruffy and unmaintained), buyers will soon be looking the other way.
To ensure this isn't the case, you can jetwash the outside of your home to give it a fresh look. What's more, if you have any fences or doors which are looking a bit tired and run-down, a quick lick of paint can do wonders, sprucing up the outside of your home in a cheap and effective way.
If the exterior of your home isn't doing it for buyers, they are more likely to be sceptical about the rest of your home. The viewing will have got started on the wrong foot and they will be more tuned in to looking for faults in the rest of your home. If they like what they see, or are wowed by the exterior, they will be entering the property in a positive frame of mind. Positive buyers are far more likely to place an offer or take their enquiries further.
Take a floral approach
The study of Instagram photos above found that a tenth featured climbing plants – such as flowers draped across the door or the side of the wall – while 20% opted for plant pots on their doorstep. Colourful, fresh flowers – whether they are in pots, hanging baskets or trellises – can help the front of your home to achieve a healthy, stylish, vibrant look, in turn creating a fantastic first impression for buyers.
Petunias, fuchsias, portulacas and geraniums are the most highly recommended to give off the best vibe.
Achieve the right balance
If you decide to carry out viewings yourself, you need to strike the right balance between enthusiastic and passionate and over-the-top and intrusive. You don't want to bombard or overwhelm buyers with information and platitudes about your home. Allow them to discover it for themselves and ask questions as they see fit.
Of course, there's nothing wrong with showing passion and shouting out about the best attributes of your home, but generally a less is more approach will be more successful. Allow your home to speak for itself.
Employ a friendly but professional approach, keeping things cordial and informal but also treating it with the seriousness it deserves. After all, a property sale is a hugely important thing and should be treated as such.
To find out more about making the right first impression and getting your home sold in North London, East London, Essex, Hertfordshire and the surrounding areas, contact your local Kings Group branch today.
To see how much your home could be worth on the current market, you can request a free instant online valuation.