Amid the uncertainty of Brexit, how do I get my home to sell?

My home’s been sitting on the market amid the uncertainty of Brexit, how do I get it looking good enough to sell?

  • To sell a property, you need to get the fundamental basics right, says Yopa
  • They are focus on three things – price, strategy and presentation
  • But you don’t have to just lower the price as a different approach can get it sold
  • Make sure you have a tidy property for when professional photos are taken 

My home has been sat on the market for several months and I want to give it a push to get it sold. 

I am at a bit of a loss as to what to do – how much should I declutter, how much should I dress it up, do I need new photos to make it look fresher on Rightmove and other sites – and how do you keep a family home looking good when it’s sitting on the market for a few months?

If you are committed to selling you need a strategy to appeal to buyers, says Yopa

MailOnline Property expert Myra Butterworth replies: With Brexit on the horizon and Britain preparing to leave the EU in March next year there is a lot of uncertainty, which is deterring some would-be buyers from making a decision. Many homes have sat on the market for weeks on end with few viewings and no sign of a serious buyer.

The main concern at the moment is whether Parliament will vote through the withdrawal agreement, or whether the UK could be forced into a no-deal Brexit and even a change of government. 

Price is usually considered the most important element in selling a home. If you price a property low compared to rivals, then it should sell. But many sellers are reluctant to take too much off the asking price, as they could then fall short of the money they need to move home.

It is also easy for sellers to focus on an initial asking price and feel they are losing money if they do not achieve close to that. A small price cut may feel palatable to someone whose home has been sitting on the market for some time, but a sizeable reduction may not. So what can you do instead?  

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  • How to find the best online estate agent to get your house sold and save thousands of pounds

Tom Waltham, territory owner for the south-east region for online estate agent Yopa, says:  In order to sell a property, you need to get three fundamental basics right – price, strategy and presentation. 

If your home is not selling, you need to start again from scratch and address the basics.

Presentation is the most important factor. If you can make your property look more attractive, you are more likely to get the price you want.

If your home has been on the market for a while, it may be worth spending a couple of hundred pounds on better photos. 

Photography should be to a professional standard but many agents lack the training to take decent photos and are poorly equipped. 

You can tell a bad photo as soon as you see one – the bed might not be made, the laundry basket visible in the corner, or the agent has used their mobile phone to take the photos.

Before any new photos are taken, spend some time decluttering but don’t be too clinical or your home will lose all personality. 

There shouldn’t be a need to upgrade furniture as there is a cost element to this. 

But a lick of paint is not a bad idea to neutralise a room; for example, if you have a dark purple wall, it is worth painting it white. 

If the property is vacant, then dressing it might help encourage a sale as it gives perspective. It is hard to gauge how big a space is when the room is empty.

Keeping a property spotless when it is on the market for a prolonged period of time can be hard work but be realistic. 

The most important time to have a tidy property is for the initial photos, which make the first impression. 

When someone is viewing a family home, chances are they have a family themselves so will expect a few toys. 

These shouldn’t be scattered all over the floor but a quick tidy up before a viewing should suffice.

The most important time to have a tidy property is for the initial photos, which make the first impression, says Yopa

Think about how your property is marketed. Some 98 per cent of buyers will find their next property online so how you use portals such as Rightmove and Zoopla, and their pricing bands, is crucial to get maximum exposure. 

If your property is on at £499,950, for example, then someone searching for properties priced £500,000 and above won’t have seen it. 

So increasing the price by £50 will expose you to a new bracket of buyers for the first time.

If your property hasn’t sold within 12 to 16 weeks, it may be time to change agent – leave it any longer and the property is in danger of going stale. 

If you are having a lot of viewings and no offers it is not necessarily the agent’s fault but if nobody is coming through the door, this should ring alarm bells.

If the agent overvalued the property in order to win your business in the first place, or their marketing material is not very good, it might be better to change agent rather than reduce the price and stick with the same agent. 

It is better to have a recently (re)launched property with a new agent rather than sticking a reduced tag on a property. 

It is not always the case that the price has to be reduced anyway – we have taken on property at the same price but with a different approach and managed to sell it.

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