September….The Festival has packed up and left town. The kids are back at school. Property buyers are on the hunt for a new home.
If you’re planning on putting your property on the market this month or want to refresh it ready for the autumn influx of buyers, we are here to share some simple tips with you to help you to make the most of one of the busiest times of the year for property sales.
1. It’s the simplest tip, but a bit of elbow grease can make the world of difference and is the best place to start. A good tidy-up and clean will stand you in good stead for photographs and viewings. Put the picnic blankets and sports equipment back where it lives – you can always get them back out again next year to take advantage of the late summer sun (hopefully!).
2. If you have a garden, summer is the ideal time, if you have kids or animals, for the wee ones or your pets to run in and out of the house. But sometimes the garden comes back in with them! Invest in a professional carpet clean to get grass stains and mud out. Or if you’d rather do it yourself, you can purchase a decent quality carpet cleaner from the supermarket or even hire one from DIY stores.
3. Autumn is a great time to consider an interior design makeover. Gold and raw materials such as wood and stone are tipped to be the autumn interior favorites this season. According to interior designers we have consulted, warm autumnal colours such as terracotta and chocolates are perennially popular. Accent colours on walls, cushions and picture frames will keep your property on trend without breaking the bank.
4. Remember that the nights will begin to draw in earlier now. If possible, try to arrange viewings with potential purchasers during daylight hours. That way your viewers will see your property in all of its naturally-lit glory.
5. If arranging viewing during daylight hours isn’t an option due to other commitments, change the lightbulbs. New lightbulbs will give out more light, helping your viewers to appreciate every corner of your property. Natural daylight bulbs are good for rooms with big windows whilst softer, gold tones work well to evoke a cosy atmosphere. Think about what feelings you want your viewers to have in each room; spacious, cosy or bright, and select your bulbs for each room accordingly. You can always change them back to energy-savers when the viewers leave. If you want to retain the energy-savers, the planet will certainly heave a sigh of relief, but remember to switch your lights on well, well before viewers arrive!
6. This is not the time to overlook the garden! Properties with outdoor space are highly sought-after so, if you have a garden, now’s the time to make the most of it. If you have children they probably will have spent most of their summer holidays in the garden, and we all know children take a little persuading to tidy-up after themselves! Put the trampoline, goal posts, Wendy House and sandpit away or to one side to create a distinctive children and adults’ area so that potential buyers who do not have children can imagine the garden the way they’d like to have it. Make the most of the late-summer sun and to create a haven that you can show-off to buyers. Cut the grass and consider planting some late flowering plants, such as dahlias, begonias and cyclamen to add some colour. Cover up the barbeque but make the most of the last rays by placing a bench or table and chair where the sun hits in the morning or late afternoon.
7. If you live in a flat and have a communal garden, remember that, even if the reality is that you never use it, most buyers will still want to imagine that they can. It can be worth spending a bit of time, even borrowing a strimmer and a lawn mower, to get the garden looking as good as it can before buyers come around: in my experience, no matter how small, no matter how overgrown and no matter whether your flat is on the top floor, nearly all buyers will want to look ‘out the back’.
8. Lucky enough to have escaped the Festival rush this year to sunnier climes? If you’ve been away a while, remember to air your property. If it’s been locked up for a few weeks properties can sometimes take on a musty or damp odour. Ventilate the property well before viewers come round. It’s also a great time to wash curtains and upholstery.
9. Damp can begin to become a problem for older buildings at this time of year, particularly if you dry your clothes indoors. As temperatures fall coming into autumn, we all tend to open our windows less. A dehumidifier can help remove the damp air from the atmosphere. Ensure that radiators are bled before switching them back on to identify any leaks. If they are serious call-in a professional to take a look.
10. After a brilliant summer, by Scottish standards, we are all hoping for a fantastic Indian Summer to delay autumn’s onset! However, as the year wears on there can start to be a wee nip in the air! To make your home welcoming and inviting for viewers, try to take the chill off any rooms before they arrive. Pop the radiators on a timer to heat the room up about half an hour before a viewing or get home a bit before the viewing to switch them on, get any fireplaces cracking away, and make your home as warm as toast to welcome viewers and help them to imagine that it was theirs!