Property Features That Scare Buyers Away

Are you struggling to shift your home, whether it be through an agent or privately? Perhaps the problem is that you’re committing one of the property selling deadly sins.

Here’s a list of reasons that can potentially make buyers run for the hills whilst wishing they had never saw that hideous monstrosity that you call a home. But fear not, these issues are all superficial features which can be easily modified and create the change that your home so desperately needs.

1) Front door colour

Pink DoorFirst impressions are a big deal when it comes to property, so it’s important to get the visuals right. Afterall, if you can’t get people through the door- how are you going to sell? A recent survey by Co-operative Bank Mortgages has discovered that the least desired front door colours are as follows: pink, orange, yellow, purple and grey. Hmm…I don’t think I have EVER encountered a door in either of those colours. The survey also revealed that the most appealing and welcoming colour is.. *drum roll, please*…white! No real shock there.

If you happen to be some kind of fruity arty-farty person that is trying to sell a house with an obscure door colour, perhaps its time to confirm to the social norm just this once by painting your door white.

2) Bad odours

Bad OdourBuyers don’t like bad smells, which is very understandable. Ever noticed that it’s always the smelly people that got neglected at school? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not surprised, it’s all very logical- no one wants to hang around bad odours. Properties that host unpleasant odours also get the same treatment- neglect.

If a prospective buyer walks into a house that smells of Pete Doherty, the buyer is going to be forever wondering what other morbid attributes the house has to offer.

The main problem is that ignorance is bliss. What do I mean by that? I mean that most people are immune to the smell of their own habitation, so they wouldn’t have a clue whether or not they have an odour problem. Solution? Get a neutral friend into your home and ask for an honest opinion on the matter. If the independent surveyor mentions anything like ‘tobacco’, ‘dampness’, or ‘drains’, you should worry.

3) Small Kitchens

Big KitchenAccording to the survey that provided the door colour facts, 29% of buyers LUUUURVE big kitchens. Physically creating extra space isn’t the obvious solution. But what I would say is declutter your kitchen, maximizing on the space you do have available. Tuck those stacked utensils away neatly, put the kid’s toys in the appropriate rooms and draw in as much natural light as possible. Think clean, think big!

4) Dirty Surfaces

Dirty CarpetSpring cleaning before viewings is always a worthy investment. Buyers take notice of features like dirty carpets and dirty walls. Much like the bad odour scenario- buyers will wonder what other morbid features the property possesses if there are fundamental problems.

The market is currently swamped with buy-to-let investors, and you know what that means don’t you? It means that a lot of landlords want to buy properties quickly that will require extremely little work and money to get it into a reasonable condition for letting. I know from personal experience that if carpets needs changing and walls need completely stripping, I’d be put off.

Solution? Roll up your sleeves, get on your knees and start scrubbing, or better yet, call in the professionals for a thorough soap-up.

5) Property Exterior

Trash CanFinally, a survey by Propertyfinder.com revealed that 38% of buyers are put off by exteriors that are in poor conditions. Kind of a no-brainer, if you ask me. But if you’re trying to sell a property by luring people into your home by strategically putting trash cans on the drive way — stop it. If the front door or brickwork is haunted by peeling paintwork, put on the overalls and open that tin of paint. You know it makes sense…

3 Comments- Join The Conversation...

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FryingBullet 10th March, 2008 @ 14:07

That's an interesting run down of points.

You have specifically mentioned kitchens - but what about bathrooms? Assuming that the house is spick and span, I would have thought it is the kitchen and bathroom that adds the zing! to sell the house. Any thoughts on the bathroom front?

1
The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 10th March, 2008 @ 14:17

Hey FB,
I agree, bathrooms can also be major selling point. But I think people are more willing to accept smaller bathrooms than kitchens, for the simple fact that people spend more time in the kitchen than bathroom. Also, the kitchen is seen as a social area. That's the only reason why I didn't specifically mention the bathroom. But ideally, every room in a house would appear spacious and clean for the optimum viewing pleasure.

Kind regards

2
Guest Avatar
FryingBullet 11th March, 2008 @ 07:59

Thanks for that insight - point taken. Probably worth skewing my spend to favour kitchens - as in "Great Bathroom", "Stunning Kitchen".

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