10 Things NOT To Do When Selling Your Home

When it comes to selling your house, it pays to take some time to make small changes that will ultimately make a potential buyer fall in love & also get you the top price for what will no doubt be your biggest financial asset.

It’s all too easy to make mistakes when putting your house on the market so here are my top tips for what NOT to do when selling your home –

1. Don’t show ‘real life’ –

This is something that doesn’t make a massive amount of sense as everybody knows that it’s impossible not to do these things, BUT you are selling the ‘dream house’ & ‘perfect lifestyle’. You want potential buyers to fall in love with the life they could live inside those walls.

Declutter everything & then before every viewing make sure that everything is as perfect as possible, e.g. no toys left lying around, beds made, no dirty dishes, no laundry drying & so on.

Make your house as ‘showroom’ as possible!

2. Don’t let faults show –

If you have things that desperately need fixing, even if it’s a leaky tap, fix it! This will make viewers wonder what else is wrong with the house & give off the ‘bodge job’ vibe, which will ultimately lead to lower/less offers.

Many people want a house they can move straight in to without any worries of broken boilers or dodgy repair work so make sure to DIY or hire a handyman to get those little bits sorted, or hide as much as possible such as dented walls with a nice photo frame.

3. Don’t be negative –

You should be the most positive person about your home – if ever meet a potential buyer then be sure to answer everything in a positive light if they ask questions. Why are you moving? Do NOT tell them the house is too small or you aren’t keen on the noisy road. Make light of all situations & tell them how much you’ll miss the house, even if you have to tell a teeny-weeny little lie.

4. Don’t present your house badly –

First impressions always count, especially with selling houses. Even from estate agent listing photos & online, it can take a few seconds for somebody to decide that it isn’t the property for them so make sure to spend some time (& unfortunately £££ although you’ll make this back in the long run!) before putting your house on the market to get everything in tip top shape.

Stage your home as the ‘dream house’ & sell a perfect lifestyle within this to draw buyers in.

5. Don’t let your tastes take over –

Never assume people can see past your decor or tastes as that isn’t something everyone can do. If you have a passion for bright clashing colours, tone it down so that the house will appeal to a wider audience. Paint doesn’t cost much & can instantly transform a room so wave goodbye to that leopard print wallpaper until you move into your new home.

6. Don’t make it too personal –

Too many pictures, memories & personal items can make a house seem too attached to you & less to a viewer. Potential buyers want to be able to visualise themselves living in that space so removing sentimental items helps them to imagine what their own life would be like living there. This will also help with your decluttering aspect so pop everything in storage until you move.

7. Don’t block natural light –

Curtains should be pulled right back & blinds opened. Net curtains should be removed for viewings as they do absolutely nothing for decor & won’t appeal to many people unless you live on a road where people walk past constantly.

Natural light is SO important to help make a room look bigger & obviously brighter. If you are blessed with beautiful views then this is even more crucial.

8. Don’t make it obvious you have pets –

Sure, you may absolutely love your furbabies BUT that doesn’t mean that a potential buyer will. If possible, take your pet out for viewings & remove all beds/toys/bowls as well as giving the place a hoover to remove hair & plug in a scent diffuser to remove any odours. Many people are allergic to animals or simply don’t like them so don’t presume Buster will be greeted with open arms.

9. Don’t confuse rooms –

If you are using your 3 bedroom house as a 2 bedroom with an office, this will confuse buyers. It’s important to have rooms as defined spaces with a clear purpose & such as a dining room used as simply that, not a dining room/TV lounge/playroom/office. Definitely don’t have a ‘dumping ground’ room.

10. Don’t be oblivious –

This is a hard one as it is a natural thing to do if you love your house but seeing it from an impartial & outsider perspective helps when selling. It pays to look at your competition & see what they are doing that you aren’t. Also take into consideration pricing as if somebody is offering a similar 3 bed semi down the road for £200k, the likelihood is that putting your on for £250k will put off potential buyers. Trust your estate agent & ask them for their honest (& brutal) opinion.

Have you had an viewed the house from hell? I’d love to hear your stories!

Love,

21 Comments

  1. Charlotte
    October 13, 2017 / 7:07 pm

    Fantastic post! After 10 years in Estate agency I couldnt agree more. Also having your home photographed on a sunny blue sky day makes a huge difference. In my opinion theres only ever 2 reasons a house won’t sell… its either the price or the agent. I’d also always go for a local independant agent over internet agents or corporate!

    • Jane
      October 13, 2017 / 7:37 pm

      To Nicola. Hope u wont mind my opinion. I think your house looks lovely. In my simple opinion id maybe add a bit of colour in your bathroom – maybe just coloured towels? If i was buying Id paint the bannisters white. I love your wardrobes.

      • Nicola
        October 14, 2017 / 7:37 am

        Thank you for your reply. Will have a look for some nice towels.,Was thinking of maybe repainting the red bedroom wall too? Xx

      • Shelley
        October 14, 2017 / 7:45 am

        I agree. I would paint banisters white. Maybe colour, to the walls of the bathroom. I would also take it off now and remarket in the spring. As most want to move before Christmas and when we were looking I avoided houses that were stagnant. Get a new agent maybe, take photos from different angles. Try some fresh flowers for the photos, maybe new bed linen just to change up the look. Have your viewers given feedback? Have you compared price to others sold in the street/local area? Maybe some brightly colour flowers in the pots?
        It’s a beautiful house.

      • Rosie
        October 14, 2017 / 8:52 am

        I think it looks immaculate! Agree with the comment above, I’d paint the bannisters, and would put more plants and dining furniture in the garden so they can imagine using that space more.

    • Tania
      October 13, 2017 / 9:58 pm

      I had a quick look also if you don’t mind. I personally love your house and if I was buying in that area I would definitely have put an offer in! You’ve done so well with so much space, it seems super cosy as well!

    • Charlotte Amor Valentine
      Author
      October 15, 2017 / 6:13 pm

      Hi Nicola, firstly can I say wow to all the amazing comments/feedback already from some of my readers – absolutely fab & I completely agree with all. My first thought was how much?! You couldn’t get a studio flat here for that let alone a 6 bedroom house. I feel like the rooms aren’t very ‘homely’ & it lacks much character/personality. I’d perhaps add some art work on the walls, new soft furnishings like rugs/cushions/throws & so on to give it a cosier look. I also agree that marketing now may not be the best idea & if the house has been for sale for a while then it becomes a bit stagnant so perhaps take it off the market & relaunch (with some new looks!) in Feb/March. Good luck lovely! xx

  2. Chelsea
    October 13, 2017 / 7:23 pm

    This is so helpful looking at putting are home up on the market thank you!!!

  3. Bo
    October 13, 2017 / 8:30 pm

    Love this! We are about to sell our first house and will definately be using all your tips! Thank you Charlotte xxx

  4. Shona
    October 13, 2017 / 10:50 pm

    We once viewed a house that to describe as having been “photographed well” would be an understatement. The rooms were so much smaller than the photos suggested, so much needed repaired and it was so dirty! My husband said he’s never come out of viewing a house and felt the need to wash his hands immediately! Needless to say, we didn’t put in an offer on it!

    • Charlotte Amor Valentine
      Author
      October 15, 2017 / 6:09 pm

      I think SO many estate agents pictures are dodgy. I remember going in to so many houses & being disappointed by how small they were compared to the pics which needed to be more realistic. You don’t want to high expectations but equally it’s important to not make it look rubbish either, even if when viewing you’re pleasantly surprised. A happy middle ground xx

  5. Charlotte Rose
    October 14, 2017 / 7:10 am

    This is such a helpful post! We’re looking at moving next year and will definately reference back to this post! We once looked at a house that was so awful, when we got there there was a hole punched in the bedroom door, there was dog pee in the bathroom, and asif that wasn’t bad enough, the agent opened the bedroom door and a swarm of dog hairs flew into the air and all over us! You literally couldn’t see the carpet for all the dog hairs 😱 clearly they could’ve done with reading this post! X

    • Charlotte Amor Valentine
      Author
      October 15, 2017 / 6:07 pm

      Oh god that sounds horrific! They evidently need a shark vacuum ahaha xx

  6. Sophie
    October 14, 2017 / 8:11 am

    Viewing nightmares have consisted of people laying in bed whilst you view, arguments and dog mess in the garden. All of which were a tad off putting.
    Love your post and your blog.

  7. Amy
    October 14, 2017 / 9:04 am

    I agree. Your home is beautiful but could benefit from a little colour (even just deeper shades of neutrals). Some.of the rooms seem quite large and colour would help define their scale better and help the light furniture not look so lost.

  8. Georgie Waters
    October 14, 2017 / 12:03 pm

    I have to say thank you to you, I started following your instagram and blog sometime ago (recommended by a friend) and instantly fell in love with your home, we were about to put our house on the market and I stood back and took a fresh look at our home of 19 years and followed your advice of not beautiful or useful out it goes, touching up paintwork and I also brought a few statement pieces that I would definitely find use for when we moved on (much to my husbands despair).
    And we sold within the week, to an estate agent, who said they fell in love with our house, so thank you for always sharing.

    Love Georgie

  9. Georgie Waters
    October 14, 2017 / 12:03 pm

    I have to say thank you to you, I started following your instagram and blog sometime ago (recommended by a friend) and instantly fell in love with your home, we were about to put our house on the market and I stood back and took a fresh look at our home of 19 years and followed your advice of not beautiful or useful out it goes, touching up paintwork and I also brought a few statement pieces that I would definitely find use for when we moved on (much to my husbands despair).
    And we sold within the week, to an estate agent, who said they fell in love with our house, so thank you for always sharing.

    Love Georgie

    • Charlotte Amor Valentine
      Author
      October 15, 2017 / 6:07 pm

      Hi Georgie, oh that’s absolutely amazing news!! Definitely pays to sometimes invest slightly before putting it on the market for a quicker & easier sell plus probably making more on the property in the long run 🙂 xx

  10. Nicola
    October 16, 2017 / 8:24 am

    Thanks so much everyone for taking time to comment. Lots of great advice. Will definitely take it on board.,all our feedback has been positive they love the house, think the price is right and think it’s beautifully presented. Only negatives are lack of parking, small outside space compared to the size of the house and the neighbours huskies next door!
    We nearly painted the bannisters as totally agree they would look better but couldn’t face such s mammoth task. Might be time to get a decorator though.
    Thanks again for all your comments. Off to peruse soft furnishings and fresh flowers!! Xx

  11. Nicola
    October 16, 2017 / 8:36 am

    Just one more thing!
    Where are the lovely photos frames from in the photo of your landing above? And any advice where to look for furnishings, accessories etc?
    So glad I found your blog and Instagram. I have already saved so many of your photos as inspiration when we get moved!! Now if only you lived nearer I would pay you to design each room in our new home!!
    Thanks again. 😘

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