Mon 24 Feb 2020
Spring is usually the time of year when the largest numbers of buyers start registering with estate agents to find their next home. And with two long school holiday periods on the horizon – Easter and Summer – family friendly locations like Surbiton and Long Ditton see a lot of property market activity.
There is no season quite like spring. Moods start to lift as the days get longer; thoughts begin to shift from indoor nesting to outdoor fun; the idea of a garden or terrace for summer in a new home goes from a dream to something to action.
While spring is the time of more people are looking for their next home, it’s also when more people looking to sell their existing one, which means it’s important to give yourself the best chance of capturing the attention and imagination of potential buyers. Fortunately, spring is one of the easiest times of year to maximise your chances of a sale without major effort because nature is on your side again, from the sun in the sky to everything on the ground. So here are seven suggestions to help you make the most of selling your home in spring.
As the nation’s lawns being to dry out, the grass begins to grow and light returns to the world, plant the front of your property with spring bulbs like daffodils, tulips and bluebells to bring the spring right to your door. You don't need permanent beds: simply invest in a large pot or two for instant kerb appeal and amazing photos of your home. You get to make a winning first impression both online and to arriving viewers with a visual message that says: “I love my home and am happy here, so you can be, too”. To continue the floral flow, place a fresh bouquet of flowers on the hallway console, the dining room table or the breakfast bar in the kitchen, while any bedraggled-looking window boxes from last summer should be replanted.
Yes, embrace your inner Marie Kondo and clear out cupboards, closets, clothing and clutter. While you do this, make sure to clean those odd little spaces you never even notice (behind the chest of drawers; above the wardrobe; the cupboard under the stairs) and see for yourself just what a difference it makes. De-cluttering gives a palpable sense of order and space which is great to live in while you're on the market, and tells potential buyers that your house has enough storage space to live in with ease.
A large and well-stocked bowl of colourful, seasonal fruit on the coffee table or kitchen worktop adds a quick-fix centrepiece with the additional benefit of being as delicious as it looks. A basket of veggies in the kitchen tells viewers that real cooking happens here, whether for for family or friends. Contemporary plants like ZZ, Japanese peace lilies and succulents in modern pots (minimalist white, concrete grey, or dark & matt mysterious tones) add a touch of life and Instagram hip. If you have older plants that need a bit of help, clean their leaves gently with cotton wool and warm water; repot or put in a new planter; then prune away any dead, sad, or unsightly spider-arms. Dead or withering house plants can say: “this house doesn’t have enough light” to a viewer.
COLOUR AND DEPTH
Dark painted rooms are very ‘in’ at the moment, but people still expect to have enough daylight to make them appealing, especially in springtime. If your room is giving more gloom than glam, consider repainting at least one wall in a light tone. It doesn’t have to be white: it could be a softer off-white shade that will look more up-to-date and not jar so much with the darker walls. Or, you could add mirrors to reflect light back in: resting a door-sized mirror against a wall is a very happening look right now and tells a buyer this room has space (just make sure to fix the top to the wall so it can’t be pulled over!)
NAB A NEWSPAPER
Not for property advertising – the internet is your friend for that – but for your winter rain-spattered windows. Spring vibe is all about that clean ‘ping’ in every area, so get the newspaper and vinegar (or your local window cleaner) to polish your windows to a high shine. Inside, make sure any mirrors are likewise free of dust, streaks and baby-fingerprints to give a glistening pop to your home.
If your curtains or blinds look in need of help, hoovering with a hand-held high-powered vacuum can take a lot of surface dust off, and give a surprisingly good result on both wooden blinds and heavy drapes. Any drab-looking washable curtains should be laundered, dried, ironed and re-hung, making sure the fabrics hang in a way that maximises the daylight, rather than blocking it. To avoid obscuring any of the windows, use tiebacks that fit with your style; from modernist metal, to grand and heavy tassels. Remember that in the spring, light is king!
PLAN FOR THE WORST
It’s Britain. Crisp and sunny spring days are eminently possible – and utterly delightful – but we also get a lot of rain, which means the chance of dirty shoes. From your own running around the park, to getting caught in a shower, to a day of walking in the woods, it’s wise to plan for every eventuality, which means having somewhere your viewers can wipe their feet, leave their shoes and hang their coats and umbrellas. Doing this right will show every potential buyer just how well your house copes with this essential, seemingly simple, yet often-hard-to-realise task, and sets the scene for the rest of the viewing.
Did you find these tips and ideas useful? As ever, if you have a property in Surbiton, Long Ditton or nearby and would like to talk about any aspect of selling this spring or moving in general, please get in touch with one of our teams.