The appearance of your home is the first thing that prospective buyers will notice; make sure you make a fantastic first impression by following these simple tips.


Your bedroom ceiling fan is broken, the bathroom sink is dripping and your stove’s pilot light constantly goes out – how long are you going to wait to have items fixed?  Even small issues such as a broken bulb can make prospective buyers turn away and find another home.  Attention to detail is very important and any home repairs should be be completed!

Make an inspection of your home and if necessary, call in specialists to take a better look to find any potential issues and deal with them quickly and professionally.  Repairs should be the first thing you do before you let the world know you are selling your home.

Things to inspect:

  • Plumbing– To see if there are hidden leaks in your home, shut off all your taps, irrigation systems, washing machine, dishwasher and other water-using appliances.  Go to your water meter and write down the number you see.  This is the amount of water per gallons you have already used.  Then go for several hours without running your water-using appliances.  Then go back to your water meter and check the number again.  If the number has increased, there is, unfortunately, a hidden leak.  Take all necessary measures to  find and fix the problem.  For obvious leaks and any faults in your plumbing system, make sure to contact a plumber.
  • Electricity– Call in a qualified electrician to diagnose your entire electrical system. Have them check your cables, wiring, sockets, light fittings, electrical appliances in use, earth connection, etc.  Make sure your electrical system is running smoothly.
  • Roof– If there is some damage to the roof structure, it can lead to serious leakage and other problems.  Use a professional to determine issues if you feel unqualified to do so.  A few roofing issues to look for:
    • Broken or missing shingles
    • Damaged flashing (rust spots or cracked caulk)
    • Worn or cracked rubber boots
    • The presence of lichen or moss 

Refreshing The Interior

Apart from your home being in perfect working order, prospective buyers will also be attracted to a cozy interior.  The possible decor changes may range from replacing small items to repainting the whole place.  No matter what you choose to do, ensure it improves on what was there before or you may turn buyers off.

You think your old sofa does not look presentable?  Don’t let it put off your prospective buyers.  Create that appeal you desire by replacing your old furnishings.  By investing in your property, you will be able to attract more buyers and sell it at a higher price.

Things you can do to freshen up the interior include:

  • Replace the furniture
  • Install new floors
  • Insulate your home
  • Repaint the walls
  • Add decorative accent pieces
  • Fit a new bathroom
  • Convert your attic and/or basement (if time & budget allows)

Clean Up

Your home should be sparkling before you show it to prospective buyers.  Consumers will not be able to visualize living in the house that’s not clean. Take a walk-through your home. Would you want to buy a property if the kitchen appliances were greasy and dusty, the bathroom tiles were moldy, and the floors were totally messy?

Roll up your sleeves and get everything spic-and-span before showing the home to prospective buyers or even before listing the house for sale. Buyers will see blemishes as they search online and view your property on their real estate agent’s website.

It is a good idea to start with a deep clean of the premises. This means more than a quick sweep around the property. You need to do a thorough cleaning such as:

  • Wash the windows
  • Clean the carpets
  • Remove dirt stuck behind your appliances and in between furnishings
  • Clean appliances thoroughly inside and out
  • Dust all knick-knacks and every available surface
  • Clean walls and counter-tops
  • And remove cobwebs! Cobwebs are typically associated with uncleanliness.  Even if your home is totally immaculate, a single cobweb may make it look unkempt.

The more you do to give your home the spic-and-span treatment the more likely it is buyers and investors will like what they see.


Streamline your possessions when getting your home ready to put on the market.  Some prospective buyers will not be able to look past your stuff to see the potential your home has.

You need to provide an atmosphere of less is more.  If that means moving some of your belongs to a storage facility, then do so. The less stuff you have in the home the larger it looks to buyers and the more likely they will want to take a longer look.

Focus On The Details

Finally, lighten up the place by adding appropriate decorative lighting, large mirrors, cheerful photos, scented candles and other neutral setting items.  Open the curtains to make your home appear warm, brighter and larger. The more you can do to make your home stand out from the competition (in a good way) the better opportunity you have that buyers will begin to visualize themselves living in the home.

Are you ready to show consumers what your home has to offer?  If you take these tips to heart and follow through with your plan, it will give your home every opportunity to get seen and sold in any real estate market.

Portions of this article were contributed by Kathleen Crane who works for DomesticCleaners Cricklewood.