PersonalAugust 2, 2018

Top 10 tips to help sell your house

Whether you’ve been trying to sell your house for a while or you want a quick sale in a fast-moving market, there is no end of helpful tips and tricks for trying to sell a property. As Property Insurance experts, The Insurance Centre have rounded up 10 of the best…

  1. Choose the right estate agent
    It can be surprising how much easier the house-selling process can be when you trust your estate agent. Select based on good reviews or recommendations, and look for one with up-to-date marketing techniques. You can arrange consultations with a few local agents before committing – and feel free to negotiate when it comes to fees.
  2. Don’t get stressed by home price indexes
    It’s easy to get carried away with newspaper reports about falling or rising house prices. Are they going up or down? In actual fact, every report uses different data from the last, which makes it hard to know who to believe. Some are based on mortgage valuations, some on asking prices and some on records of how much money land was sold for – which is usually only released a few months down the line, so is slightly out of date anyway. It’s best to take an average of three estate agent valuations. 
  3. Is it the right time of year?
    The month you choose can make all the difference. August is considered the worst time of year to try and sell up, as buyers navigate summer holidays and looking after kids off school. Christmas chaos also renders December a no-go.

    The best time? Spring, between February and June. Gardens are in bloom, the natural light is good and everyone will be aiming to have moved into their new homes before the next school year begins in September.

  4. You’ll be telling me the day of the week matters next.
    Well, actually… analysis by Which? Money suggests properties listed on Mondays can sell up to a month faster than those listed on Saturdays and Sundays.
  5. What colour should my front door be?
    Apparently white is the most popular colour for wooden front doors in the UK. Natural stained or varnished wood came second, with black coming in third. Handy to know if you’re planning to spruce up the outside of your house. And on that note…
  6. Think about kerb appeal
    It isn’t uncommon for potential buyers to drive past your house before a viewing, deciding if they like the area, street and look of the property. Outdoor maintenance such as weeding paths, trimming bushes, removing cobwebs and even planting a few flowers can go a long way.
  7. Spring clean
    Cleanliness shouldn’t be underestimated. Pay particular attention to kitchens and bathrooms, which are considered “high impact” due to their ability to make or break a viewer’s opinion.
  8. Fix broken bits and bobs
    “Why would I spend money on a house I’m trying to leave?” It may feel counterintuitive, but failing to fix cracked tiles, broken guttering or dripping taps could very well put off buyers and ultimately slow down your sale. 
  9. Neutral paint only, please
    No matter your personal style, viewers will want to imagine their own possessions and decorations in the space. This is easiest if walls are light and neutral, while patterns and clutter can make rooms look smaller.
  10. Select the best buyer
    If you’re lucky enough to have more than one offer on the table, how should you choose? It’s not always about the money. Buyers without a chain may prove a more reliable choice with less chance of a fall-through – perhaps they have already sold their home, are cash or first-time buyers – but if that’s not an option then consider the figures offered, and whether their moving date is convenient for you.

Buying a new property? From personal home buildings and contents cover to commercial property owners’ insurance for landlords, we’ve got you covered. Get in touch for a competitive quote.