Preparing Your Home For Sale

In order for us to achieve the best possible price for your property and to sell it in a reasonable timescale, it may be worth investing some time and money in making sure that your home is at its most attractive. A few simple improvements to your home will attract more potential buyers.

It is a good idea to think about what you want to include in the sale. Usually, fixtures and fittings such as radiators, carpets and built-in appliances are included in the price but other items such as curtains, light fittings and free-standing appliances might be up for negotiation.


The following tips could make a substantial difference in how your current home is perceived by any interested parties.

First impressions count

It is an age-old cliché: never judge a book by its cover. Yet everyone does, especially the potential buyers of your home. Every time we organise a viewing, we realise the importance of first impressions. Even before we have shown a buyer the inside of the property, they are already judging it by its appearance on the outside. You will need to awaken an instant appeal, so make sure that the front of the house is neat and tidy, especially the front door. It may also be worthwhile to note that your smelly wheelie bin and cement front garden are not doing you, or your house, any favours. So why not jazz up your entrance with a colourful hanging basket or stylish topiary?


You may be considering re-decorating some rooms before you put your home on the market. In our vast experience this is definitely advantageous when selling. But we would like to warn you off experimenting with the wacky orange sunflower mural you were previously scared of trying. It is best to stick to a plain, neutral and light scheme, as this will create the illusion of space and light in even the smallest room. Going for bold may waste you time and money!

Finish all the little jobs

It is important to finish all the little jobs that you have always meant to do, but never got round to because they were not pressing. The missing tile above the kitchen drainer will be noted, as will the rusting radiator in the bedroom, the cracked pain of glass or the leaking gutter.

Tidy up and de-clutter

Selling your house is a testing time, especially for whoever is responsible for the washing-up and the general upkeep of the property. It is, nevertheless, advisable to keep your home tidy and remove as much clutter or excess furniture as possible to help it appear bigger to your discerning visitors. Try to avoid the awkward “estate agent shuffle” by keeping all gangways clear.

Neutralize pet odours

Pet smells and hairs appeal to the very few. Perhaps it is wise to keep your over-joyous Saint Bernard outside or even away from the property during viewings and to rid all surfaces and carpets of his hair – and do remove any dog poo in the garden and change the cat litter tray before a viewing! You may also considering combating any smells from your pets.


Most people have watched home improvement programmes on TV over the past years, and are therefore clued up on baking bread and brewing coffee to create a welcome atmosphere in a house. Despite this, we still believe that the smell of a house can influence its appeal. On a sunny day, you should open windows to refresh the tired smell of winter. Otherwise invest in some fragrant candles or a good quality room spray.

Gather your paperwork

Finally, it is a good idea to gather together all the vital paperwork concerning your home in a small portfolio, for easy access. Details should include any work that has been undertaken on the property, such as rewiring or re-roofing, council tax bills, water, electricity and gas rates. If you are selling in winter, why not dig out some photographs that show potential buyers what the garden looks like at the height of summer?

Want more advice?

All these handy tips are provided free by Downer & Co Sales – if you are thinking of moving, contact us today for a free market valuation, without obligation.

DOWNER & CO Estate Agents, 44 Cheap Street Newbury, Berkshire RG14 5BX
Residential Sales • Lettings & Management • Land & Development

Newbury: 01635 523777 (Sales) 01635 523880 (Lettings)
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