People selling their homes have just 16-and-a-half minutes to impress buyers, according to new research.
Bad smells and stumbling in on family disputes are among the off-putting factors reported in the survey commissioned by Good Move.
The firm's director, Nima Ghasri, has issued five tips for sellers wanting to make their properties more appealing.
She said: “Selling your property can be a stressful situation, to say the least, as there is so much to consider. However, it’s important to make your home look as visually appealing as possible to ensure viewers leave with a good and lasting impression.
"It’s worth instructing a chartered surveyor to perform a property survey, so that you can take steps to rectify any major issues that will put buyers off or reduce the value of your home.”
Nima's tips are:
1 Banish bad smells. According to Good Move’s research, a third of buyers have encountered bad smells such as damp, animals, and cigarettes when viewing a property. It is often said that the smell of freshly baked bread or a hearty meal are some of the secrets to selling houses, but if you’ve no time to cook, simply install a few air fresheners and make sure your house is well ventilated.
Damp is one of the main things buyers will detect through the smell of your house, so make sure you treat any problem areas too, and try to keep pet and cigarette smells at bay.
2 Fix minor issues. Most prospective buyers want to move into a property that requires minimum maintenance and repairs, so fixing any minor issues like cracked tiles or worn patches of carpet can make all the difference. A chartered surveyor can indicate areas requiring attention.
3 Up the curb appeal. First impressions are important when it comes to generating interest in your property. The first thing buyers will see is the exterior, so look to increase the curb appeal by mowing the lawn, weeding the garden, pruning the vegetation, removing any visible rubbish bins and giving the drainpipes a fresh lick of paint.
4 If you have pets, make sure you clean up after them. Of buyers surveyed, 17 percent have come across animal faeces on floors and furnishings whilst viewing a property.
5 Avoid family disputes. A tenth of buyers said they had come up against family disputes whilst viewing a property. If you have people coming to visit your home, try to keep arguments at bay.
One option is to prompt other members of your household to pop out for an hour or so to avoid any arguments arising.
The Good Move website is at https://goodmove.co.uk/