Many people forget the first impression comes from the garden. Watch the video below, to get ideas and tips to help sell your home this summer, as well as make your garden a more enjoyable place to be.
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1. Decluttering the garden can add value. Always start with tidying and give your lawn a fresh mow and tidy up any weather damage before a viewing.
2. Add some seasonal colour, like plant pots filled with flowers. This will add perceived value.
3. Start in the front garden, because this is where your potential buyer will start. The first impression counts.
4. Add a key selling point, like a summer house, play park or a jacuzzi if you want to turn your garden into a fantastic reason to buy the house. This requires major investment, but it could secure your sale.
5. If you’re looking to spend less, don’t underestimate the impact of a coat of paint on fences and sheds.
6. Style your garden with furniture. You wouldn’t show a room to a potential buyer without any furniture in it, so why show a garden without a table and chairs on the decking or patio?
7. If your home is overlooked, it’s a good idea to give the idea of privacy to the garden. If it isn’t too expensive, add hedges or trees in key spots.
Are you looking for a new home with a beautiful garden? Contact a Guild Member today.
It is difficult for a garden to look beautiful in Winter however it can look tidy and have a little colour.
Ideas of jobs you could be doing –
Generally tidy your garden – Get rid of the dead Christmas tree. Rake/sweep up any leaves left from Autumn. Cut back anything that you can, at this time of year. Tie back any loose branches or climbers. Make sure your bins look tidy. Kill any moss. Plant some winter colour – winter pansies, early flowering Spring bulbs etc
Now is the time to plan the changes you would like to make to your outside space in 2019 …
Before selling your home, most people try to spruce up their property by decluttering and doing a thorough clean. But many people forget the area that gives a first impression is the garden. We all like to get outside and enjoy a sunny summer afternoon, so make sure your garden looks appealing for a potential buyer. Here are some easy tips to follow to make your garden add value to your property.
1.Spruce up the space
Just like inside your home, some decluttering and garden maintenance can add value to your property. Always start with tidying and key maintenance.
“Depending on their situation, buyers could see the garden as entertaining space, a hobby, the place where their children will play, space for their pets, a source of food or a combination of any or all of these, so it is crucial that sellers place as much importance on the presentation of the garden as they would on the presentation of the house,” says Steve Thompson from Thomas Morris in Cambridgeshire. “Good gardens can add value to a home and poorly kept gardens can detract from it.”
Susie Davies from Debbie Fortune Estate Agents in Somerset recommends maintaining the lawns. “A manicured lawn always enhances the appearance of a garden and makes it look bigger,” she says.
Lee Hussell from Webbers in Devon has some practical advice. “The first place to start is to give your garden a good tidy up. Winters are never kind to our gardens and damage may have been caused to fences and trellis or maybe the larger shrubs and trees. Any dead growth can be cut back and fallen leaves and other debris can be removed and cleared away.”
2. Add some seasonal colour
Once your garden is tidy, it is time to make it into a key selling point that potential buyers will love.
“When showing your home, you want the buyers to visualise living there, so have pot plants filled with flowers to give it some colour and the lawn mowed to make it look tidy,” suggests Celeste Hannah from Hamilton Parkers in Hampshire. “First impressions count, and in the spring and summer months, you want to show your garden off to its full potential. This will definitely add perceived value and gives you a better chance to maximise the selling price.”
3. Focus on what is seen first
Struggling for time or budget? Start where your potential buyer will start and focus on this area.
“Never forget kerb appeal, and, more relevant in the online age, photo appeal. The first impression really does count, so always start with the front garden,” says Martin Moore from Morris Marshall & Poole in Wales.
4. Add a key selling point
A well-maintained garden will make sure a buyer is not put off your property, but something more can make them want to buy your property above any others they have seen.
“A nice summer house is a garden goal for many people,” says Phil Pritchard from Williams & Goodwin in North Wales. “It often feels like an extra room away from the main property and can be utilised as anything from a place to relax, an office, a man cave or a playroom for the children.”
There are ways to maximise the impact of an existing summer house, too. “If you have a summer house, it is worth making sure the wood has been treated so that it is weather proof and you can easily give it a face lift by adding a touch of colour,” suggests Andrew Lodge from Andrew Lodge Estate Agents in Surrey. “There are so many good quality garden paints available in neutral tones.”
Don’t forget the impact that a child’s opinion may have on the decision makers, advises John Newhouse from Roseberry Newhouse in North Yorkshire. “Buyers may love the idea of a summerhouse or man cave, and of course children will be drawn to tree houses or play areas.”
Simon Miller at Holroyd Miller suggests caution, though. “The truth is that some people like hot tubs or summer houses and some don’t. Additions of this kind shouldn’t be thought of in terms of re-sale, however, well looked-after and presented in the right way, they will certainly present something unique and a lifestyle image that potential buyers can see the value in.”
5. Add some shed-quarters
Sheds are not only practical, but they are coming back into fashion. They can be used from anything as a useful place to store bikes and lawnmowers to a garden retreat.
“By putting up a good-sized shed, you are adding a useful storage space for gardeners and families with outdoor furniture and even toys,” says Andrew Lodge.
Many people choose to work from home, and an insulated shed could provide the perfect home office. John Newhouse says: “Additional space in the shape of pods, studios or cabins provide potential work space options for house hunters.”
6. A little paint goes a long way
If you’re looking to spend less to add value to your property, don’t underestimate the impact of a good coat of paint on fences, sheds and other wood in the garden.
“Adding value to your home through the garden doesn’t have to break the bank. If you have decking or a perimeter fence, you could freshen it up with a coat of paint. If the garden is presentable it will be more attractive to viewers and could increase the price a potential buyer is willing to pay for your home,” suggests Jared Thomas from Emsleys Estate Agents in West Yorkshire.
7. Think about the patio
“We recommend investing in good quality patio, paving or decking,” says Andrew Lodge. “Having a professional job done will enhance the overall appearance of your outside space. Decent sized patio and decking areas add value as they are great for entertaining and alfresco dining. Adding some good lighting outside will also enable people to make the most of the garden on those long summer nights.”
8. Style your garden with furniture
You wouldn’t show a room to a potential buyer without any furniture in it, so why show a garden without a table and chairs?
“Depending on the size of the garden and who it will appeal to, ensure that the lawns are cut or the terrace is swept and ideally have the garden furniture set up so buyers can imagine themselves sitting out enjoying an al fresco evening,” said John Newhouse.
9. Secure the garden
If the people viewing the house have pets, they will want to see a garden that is fully secured to avoid an escaped dog.
“It is important that you invest in secure fencing, walls or gates,” advises Andrew Lodge. “People like to feel secure in their gardens so that they can relax. It also makes the garden more appealing to those with young children and pets.”
10. Make it private
If your home is overlooked by other homes or gardens, it’s a good idea to give the idea of privacy to the garden. If it isn’t too expensive, add hedges or trees in key spots. It will make the potential buyers be able to imagine themselves enjoying a peaceful afternoon outside in the summer.
Susie Davies advises that ornamental trees have a pleasing, aesthetic effect in a garden.
Are you looking for a new home with a beautiful garden? Contact a Guild Member today to start your property search.
To make your home appeal to the widest range of buyers, identify its strengths and weaknesses. Here are some of the most common property weaknesses and how you can turn them into strengths …
Weakness:The windows are outdated.
Hanging new curtains is an easy way to update your property. Install a simple metal rod and hang a neutral curtain with metal rings.
Weakness:Your kitchen needs an update.
Purchase new white goods for your kitchen to avoid the cost of a complete renovation. When you’re updating, think stainless steel as these appliances are popular and modern.
Weakness:There are small, ‘awkward’ spaces in your home.
Hang a large mirror. Mirrors can make any space seem larger, so they’re especially important in an entryway or narrow hallway.
Weakness: Your house looks old.
A fresh coat of paint and a top-to-bottom clean can work wonders to turn a rustic property into a character-filled dream. Highlight the period features of your property so the house becomes historic, not just ‘old’.
Weakness:There’s no furniture in your property.
Have furniture in every room to demonstrate what it could be used for.
Moving to a new house can be a stressful time, particularly if a sale falls through. Don’t worry if this happens as there are often ways to get it back on track. Guild Members talk about the potential pitfalls to avoid during your negotiations and give tips to help your sale move forward.
If something unexpected comes up in a survey, it may be a big enough problem to make the sale fall through.
Becky Evans from Mark Evans & Co said: “In our experience, most house sales fall through due to survey reports. Unexpected work picked up on a survey may cause some purchasers to walk away from a sale. We would recommend that sellers sort out any paperwork for work carried out and organise certificates to provide to your surveyor and purchaser.
“If there is work that needs to be carried out, it can be more beneficial to rectify it before going on the market, because if your sale falls through, you will still have to pay solicitor fees and may still end up paying for the work. Purchasers should fully read their survey report and ask their surveyor to explain anything they don’t understand. If surveyors have not seen any paperwork or evidence of work, they have to assume it hasn’t been done and it can therefore seem like a larger problem than it is,” she warns.
Liam Sullivan from Drivers and Norris has some advice. “Some of the more common reasons for losing a sale can be avoided if you ask the seller if they are aware of any major works having been done on the property,” he said. “Or, if alterations have been made, do they have any documentation which signs it off, either from The Council or Building Regulations?”
A chain can fall apart for many reasons, and sometimes people can get bored of waiting and find a house elsewhere.
“When you agree a sale, you expect it to go through to completion. However, this is a time when you are not in control of events. You must rely on your buyer, and maybe even their buyer, and so on until the chain is complete. Any one of these people can and do change their minds occasionally. It is often nothing to do with your property,” explains Zoe Hayle from Marshalls Penzance.
The results of a single break can be huge, too. “A sale falling through at the bottom of a chain of sales can potentially jeopardise all of the others, so one break can mean three, four or more sales falling through,” says Justin Flanagan from Charles Eden.
How can you try to stop a chain from falling through?
Becky Evans from Mark Evans & Co has some advice: “Our biggest advice to purchasers and vendors is that you may have to compromise during your sale. Also, picking the right estate agent can literally keep your sale together; our contract chaser is invaluable and on many occasions, sales would have not gone through without her.”
During a negotiation
Negotiations can be a tricky time, and you can find yourself dealing with surprising demands. It is worth being flexible, and remember that small details should not be a make-or-break on your deal.
Cheryle Wileman from Liverpool Property Solutions says that the key is good communication. “Fixtures and fittings can also cause some fraught negotiations with sellers wanting to take fitted wardrobes etc out of the property,” she explains. “Keeping calm is often the key.”
Allan Carr, Founder of Pulver Carr, agrees that a level head can push a sale through. “I have seen a number of sales almost fall through due to silly reasons such as having to leave a tired old shed, leaving curtains, not wanting to contribute towards an indemnity policy, or not being able to agree on a completion date.
“This is where the quality estate agent mediates between both parties and get them to look at the bigger picture of completing the sales transaction,” he says.”
People changing their mind and pulling out
Situations change all the time. Someone could lose their job, a family member could become ill, or people can simply have second thoughts.
Mike Coles from Debbie Fortune has noticed a range of reasons why minds can be changed. “The seller can change their minds after first accepting the offer and decide to stay put, which is sometimes called ‘gazanging’. The seller may not be able to find another property to move to, or the buyer’s finances are not in place or their mortgage advance is rejected.
“The buyer can be ‘gazumped,’ which is when the seller receives a higher offer from another buyer. The opposite, ‘gazundering’, is when the buyer reduces their offer at the last minute, before contracts are signed,” Mike explains.
As much as a buyer may want to move ahead, they may not be able to. “Despite buyers having AIP finance, there is a changing mortgage market and tougher underwriting depending on the loan to value once an actual application is completed. This can lead to upset unless the buyer has regularly reviewed the arrangements they have made,” points out Justin Flanagan from Charles Eden.
What should you do next?
If a sale falls through, Kelvin Francis from Kelvin Francis says: “Get the property back onto the market without delay and commence a new marketing campaign. In the event of the cause having been a result of the survey, the seller should deal with any faults.”
How can you prevent a sale from falling through?
Don’t forget to check your mortgage status before putting in an offer to ensure that you will be accepted to buy the home.
You should always remember to be patient, especially when waiting for sales to go through. The negotiation stage can be the most frustrating as you want the sale to move ahead quickly, but it is worth taking a step back and letting the negotiations take their course.
The most important thing is to choose an agent who will be able to constantly chase your sale through, no matter if it is in a chain of not. A highly-regarded independent estate agent, like Members of The Guild of Property Professionals, will be experts in sale chasing and can ensure that everything possible is done to stop a sale from falling through.
There are different types of estate agent model out there, but at The Guild, we recommend the ‘no sale, no fee’.
This means that you don’t have to pay until your house is sold, so there is no risk of having to pay for no results. The ‘no sale, no fee’ model is used by nearly all ‘traditional’ estate agents, which means your friendly local estate agent who has a shop on the high street. Be sure to look for this when you decide to sell your home. When you choose the ‘no sale, no fee’ option, it means that your estate agent wants to sell your home as much as you do – they won’t get paid if they don’t!
What are the differences?
Pay a flat fee up-front
Payment is due no matter if the agent sells your home or not
Usually conducted online
‘No sale, no fee’ model
No commission is taken until the sale goes through
Agents are paid on commission, so they want the same as you: to sell the home
Usually has a high-street office, giving consumers an in-person point of contact
The choice is yours, and you are free to pick the model that best suits your needs. At the Guild, we recommend the ‘no sale, no fee option because agents with a commission-based fee structure aren’t paid until they get results, meaning their priority is the same as the homeowners: to sell the property.
Iain McKenzie, CEO of The Guild, said: “There has been a rise in the number of DIY packages with up-front fees available to consumers, but no-one has truly explained the pros and cons of each service, so we want to educate the public about the different options that are available. At The Guild, we strongly recommend the high-street option of ‘no sale, no fee’ to ensure that the seller gets the best service and best price for their home in the shortest possible time.”
The Guild is a network of the best 800 independent estate agents around the country. Find out why you should choose them to sell your home.