Tips for Your House Viewing
Looking at our top tips for getting your home ready for a property viewing, what buyers will look for when viewing your home, as well as our house viewing checklist.
Alexandra Ventress ★ Digital Content Writer
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When it comes to putting your house on the open market, an aspect that can often be overlooked amongst house hunting, mortgage applications, finding a conveyancer, and estate agent fees, is the house viewing itself. Whilst it may seem like a fairly insignificant aspect compared to the rest of the process, a successful property viewing is one of the keys to a fast sale.
But how can you get your home house viewing ready, what difference will it make to the sale, and what will you need to do?
In this blog post, we will be looking at our house viewing checklist, the questions that buyers may ask you, and how to stage your home correctly.
What is a property viewing?
Before we get into our tips for your house viewing, we will first look at what a house viewing is. This is when prospective buyers have a look around your home to get a feel for it and decide whether or not they wish to purchase it. This involves a brief tour of the home, answering any questions the prospective buyers may have, and the opportunity for buyers to wander the house individually. Here they will be judging the condition of the property and how it will fit the potential buyer’s needs. Potential buyers may wish to do two or three house viewing and will often request them at different times of day, so they can get a sense of the property you’re selling.
Who will organise a house viewing?
Whilst each house sale and estate agency is different, as a general rule of thumb house viewings are organsied by the estate agent. They will check what dates and times you are available and other them to any interested buyers, and if the time suits both parties then that is when the viewing will take place.
Will I need an EPC to sell my home?
In order to sell your home, you will need an energy performance certificate, also known as an EPC. An EPC is a document that you will need to have ready to provide to potential buyers which informs them on how energy efficient the property is. It is a legal requirement for selling and will rate the property on a scale from A to G. A property with a score of A is the most energy efficient it can be and a property with a score of G is the least.
What questions might buyers ask?
When it comes to questions to ask, buyers will leave nothing off the table. As they will be the ones who are potentially buying a house, they will want to know about every aspect of it, so you will need to be ready for anything. Some of the most common questions sellers get asked by buyers include:
- Why are you moving?
- What is the neighbourhood like?
- Have you had much interest?
- How long have you been on the market?
- Are you willing to take offers?
- What are the neighbours like?
- Have you had any work/renovations done to the property?
- What are the schools/shops/ pub /green spaces/amenities in the area like?
- What are the transport links like?
- How much have other properties been selling for?
- How much are the property’s bills?
- Is there any building work planned nearby?
- What direction does the garden face?
- What is the size of the garden?
- Is it a leasehold or freehold property?
If you are unsure about any of the questions, you should ask the estate agent who will be able to advise you on what to say.
What do buyers look for when viewing a house?
When it comes to viewing a property, buyers will be checking every aspect of your home. Whilst this can sound intimidating, it is good to know what your buyers will be looking for so you can make sure your property is up to scratch.
Here is the typical buyers checklist of things to look for in a house viewing:
- Why are you moving?
How much storage space is available
If there are any structural issues
Which way does the house face
Any mould or damp issues the property may have
Are the rooms big enough?
If there are any hairline cracks in the walls
The condition of the roof/ are there any loose tiles on the roof?
How is the plumbing?
What’s the attic like?
How old is the boiler?
What is home staging?
Home staging and property viewing go hand in hand, although not every home seller knows this. Home staging is the act of decorating your home in a certain way so that it will appeal to more buyers and help you surpass your asking price. A well-staged home can be the difference between getting the sale price you want, and the sale price you will settle for. Home staging includes simple things, such as making sure rooms are clutter-free, painted in neutral colours, smelling fresh, and looking clean.
According to research from Homesandgardens.com, a home that has been staged will sell three times faster than a house that has not been staged. The same research also revealed that 70% of estate agents stated that staging your home can help to increase the offer value on a house by up to 10%.
Home staging tips
Whilst home staging can sound overwhelming, you don’t need to go overboard in order to stage your home professionally. Below are some of our top tips to help you get your property ready for a showing:
One of the least glamorous but most cost-effective ways you can prepare your home for viewing is to deep clean. This means you should make any tiles are scrubbed and cleaned within an inch of their life, making sure taps are polished, any mouldy areas are eradicated, walls are freshly painted, carpets cleaned and all surfaces are spotless.
While it may sound like a chore, having a clean and tidy house can help you to increase viewings and help potential buyers envision themselves in their dream home. Professionally deep cleaning your property can work out to be a little expensive, however, it can be the way forward when it comes to staging your home for a fast sale.
The key to a successful house viewing is to help the buyer to try to get a sense of your home. You want them to know that this is a house that is well cared for and loved, and one that they want to live in. In order to help your buyer to see this vision of your home, you will need to make any general repairs around the house that need fixing.
Buyers will be checking for areas of the home that may need improvement, so be sure to tackle any unfinished DIY projects, fix any door handles that need replacing, and oil any cupboard doors that need silencing.
If you are looking to secure a fast sale, then you are going to have to break out the toolbox as buyers will knock money off their offer for every problem they see in the home that needs fixing. You will be able to save yourself time and money in the long run by spending a little now and making any repairs that are necessary.
The next step in the house staging checklist is to declutter your property. This means it is time to throw out things you don’t use anymore and to bring a sense of order to your home. It will also help to keep your home in pristine condition during house viewings.
One of the biggest advantages that decluttering your property brings is that it will make moving easier as you will have already thrown away anything you didn’t plan on taking with you. In order to make sure that you have decluttered enough, your cupboards and storage options should all be around 75% full.
When it comes to buying a home, it is important to keep things looking fresh. An inexpensive way you can breathe new life into your rooms is by giving them a fresh coat of paint. Whilst it may seem like a simple task, it is important not to underestimate the power of paint. It can a room from drab to fab within minutes.
Another way you can give your home a new look in preparation for showings is by taking a critical look at each room, looking at the furniture within each room, and deciding whether or not it fits the room. You should remove any furniture that does not match the aesthetic of your home or any furniture that makes your rooms look small and cramped.
One thing that can put buyers off from purchasing your home is smells. Before you host any property showings, make sure you eradicate the following odors from your home:
- Pet smells
- Blocked drains
You can do this by making sure to take out any bins before a showing, deep cleaning, and by using fresh flowers, a scented candle, reed diffusers, or even air fresheners.
As a homeowner, you can make the interior of your home as clean and as organised as you want, but you mustn’t forget that first impressions matter! And whilst it can be easy to get distracted by work that needs doing inside of the house, you can’t forget the exterior of the property. Whilst the idea of giving your garden a makeover can sound daunting, there’s no need to panic, simple tasks such as planting flower beds, repainting tired-looking fences, mowing the lawn, weeding the garden, and cleaning the patio can all make the world of difference to your property.
When buyers are looking to buy a property, they want to be able to imagine themselves one day living in the house. In order for them to do this and to help your property reach its full potential, it is a wise idea to neutralise your home before any viewings. This means removing any personal items from the sight of your buyers.
Some personal items that are commonly forgotten about by homeowners include:
- Trophies and certificates
- Family photos
- Children’s artwork
- Collectible items
- Holiday souvenirs
The idea is to make your home look like a new build showhome so that your buyer’s imaginations can truly run wild.
House Viewing Checklist
It can be overwhelming knowing what areas you will need to cover when it comes to preparing for house viewings. Below we have compiled our house viewing tips that will help you prepare for your house showings:
- Be sure to tidy the garden (mow the lawn, weed the garden, add garden furniture where necessary)
- Make sure the front of the house looks tidy (make sure windows are clean, door handle polished, front door is freshly painted etc)
- Deep clean and declutter each room in the house
- Put anything that is not being used in the staging of your home in storage or tidied away out of sight
- Make sure to remove any personal items like family photos, souvenirs, children’s artwork, etc from the house
- Clean and polish every surface
- Have a copy of your EPC ready to show any buyers who come to the viewings
- Make a plan of which order you wish to show buyers around your home, decide where will you start the tour and where will you end it?
- Be prepared to answer any questions your potential buyers may have
The Property Selling Company
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We will be working alongside you every step of the house selling process, covering everything, so you won’t have to. The days of expensive solicitor fees and legal work are over, and our team of property experts will continue to be there, even after the process is complete.
We will market your property on popular property portals such as Rightmove and Zoopla, organise viewings, cover legal fees, and negotiate better deals all for free!
If you are ready to sell your home in as little as 28 days, then get in touch today and fill out one of our fast, free, no-obligation forms for your house valuation today!