The time taken to sell a house in 2019 was more than twice as long as in 2021. In 2019, it took an average of 69 days for an acceptable offer to be made, whereas in 2021 the time was down to just 27 days.
Online searches for ‘houses for sale’ and ‘property for sale’ also rose substantially, up 31% and 27% respectively.
Estate agents and property consultants Strutt & Parker have set out some ways in which those wishing to sell can capitalise on the enthusiastic market.
With homeowners spending an average of over £2,500 in a single year on improvements, it makes sense to target the areas most sought after by buyers if you are thinking of selling and moving on.
- Basic structural issues – sorting out problems that are likely to be picked up when a buyer has a survey carried out will minimise the risk of an offer being reduced to cover the cost of rectifying matters. This could include making sure the roof is sound, dealing with damp, checking timbers, repairing the chimney and sorting out cracks.
- Clean, fresh and modern kitchens and bathrooms are a big draw. Even if you don’t replace the existing fittings, there are plenty of ways of freshening up these rooms to make them appealing.
- If you are prepared to spend some money, converting the loft to a useable extra bedroom will add value.
- Similarly, converting the garage is attractive, particularly with people looking for more inside space for homes office and gyms.
- If your heating system and windows are dated, replacing them will make your property more appealing. As well as being an expense, it is a hassle that buyers would rather not deal with if they don’t have to. It could set you apart from another similar property to be able to offer a new boiler or new windows that are set to last for years to come.
- A well-maintained garden is also a big draw, particularly if it has somewhere for the buyers to picture themselves sitting and enjoying the outside space. Trees and shrubs will make it appear more mature and welcoming, rather than being an empty, sterile box.
For external appeal, Strutt & Parker recommend that you attend to a number of issues to make your property stand out from the competition.
Research found the following was important to buyers when assessing the outside of a potential home:
Windows in good condition
No missing tiles on the roof
A tidy garden and trimmed hedges
Well maintained driveway or pathway
Well-maintained fences and walls
An attractive front door
Hidden wheelie bins
Head of Strutt & Parker Canterbury, Edward Church, advises: "Capitalise on the thing that makes your house different". If there are easy improvements that can be made to your home, make them, then feature them in photographs and styling to really set your property ahead of the competition.”
This article is not a definitive statement of the law. It is designed as a free update on the law at the time of publishing. It is not a substitute for legal advice on specific facts and circumstances. BakerLaw LLP and/or the writer accepts no liability or responsibility for reliance on this article and recommends that you seek independent legal advice on your specific circumstances prior to taking any steps.