Property: What to do before a viewing on your house

There is nothing worse than going to show people around a house, only to open the front door and find the property is full...

There is nothing worse than going to show people around a house, only to open the front door and find the property is full of clutter - Credit: Getty Images

First impressions make a difference when you meet people you have not met before. Similarly, kerb appeal for a property on the market is really important.

Tidy your home before a viewing

Tidy your home before a viewing - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

You want a potential buyer to get the right feeling from the very start. If your house looks unloved, it’s unlikely that even those with imagination will see past the clutter and the grime.

After all, you’re trying to sell your property in Torbay and move on, so of course you want people to like your house and put in an offer.

Here are our seven tips for preparing your home for a viewing.

1 De-clutter

For us estate agents, there is nothing worse than going to show people around a house we are marketing, only to open the front door and find the property is full of clutter. Okay, it might be family favourite toys and pictures and mementoes, or it might be piles of rubbish, but you must realise that prospective buyers want to see the house. Seeing piles of bits and bobs will simply put them in the wrong frame of mind.

Tip: Take the opportunity to box things up and store them away, or get rid of unwanted items.

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2 Pet hates

You love your cat or your dog, but prospective buyers coming to look around your house may not like pets or could be allergic to them. It sounds harsh, but it is best if you can get a friend or a neighbour to look after your pet for an hour.

Tip: Give your house a good clean and light a scented candle before a visit by a prospective buyer. It’ll help get rid of the smell of a cat or dog.

3 Centre on the garden

If you’ve got a front garden, tidy it up and make sure the grass is cut or the hedge has been given a trim. First impressions matter so take the time and effort to get it right.

Tip: Set the scene; if it’s nice and sunny, put a table and chairs outside so that the garden looks inviting.

4 Smells of the season

Because you’re in your home day in day out, you may be blind to the smells of your house. Using diffusers and scented candles sensibly will help make it smell nice for a potential buyer.

Tip: Think about the seasons. If it’s winter, choose a fragrance that ties in with the time of year. Try spiced fruits or cinnamon in Winter perhaps and floral fragrances during the Spring.

5 Bathroom routine

Your bathroom is absolutely key to making a good impression. There’s nothing worse than a dirty, smelly bathroom for making people think that a house is unloved.

Tip: Present your bathroom well with folded towels and some flowers placed on the windowsill in a little vase. Store all the toiletries away in cupboards.

6 Space invaders

Space is often at a premium, so help the potential buyer realise just how much they will be getting if they purchase your property. Is your furniture making a room look small? Are there too many toys or books lying around?

Tip: If you think a room looks too busy, it might be time to rearrange the chairs or bookshelves.

7 Stage it right

Staging isn’t just for theatre. Put fruit in a bowl, flowers in vases, place a home decor magazine on a side table. Understand that you have to give your home a chance, so make it look great.

Tip: If you need inspiration, go and have a look at a homeware store, as they are experts when it comes to staging room scenes.

For advice on selling your home, call the team at Ridgewater Sales and Lettings on 01803 525100 or email