Helping Viewers See The Full Picture: How Agents Can Highlight Potential

[Image source: Deposit photos]

When your agency or property management company is tasked with selling a home, it often goes one of two ways; the property is in great condition, has been renovated and practically sells itself or it’s time to get creative as there’s not much to shout about. In scenario two, the best way to sell the property is to highlight its potential, but sometimes it can be difficult to see where that potential lies.

If you’re struggling to see it, then there’s a good chance that viewers are going to encounter the same problem. To help viewers see the full picture of your property portfolio, here are some helpful tips to share as you show people around.

Increasing the property’s footprint

Most people want as much space from their new home as possible, perhaps because they are looking to move to something bigger or they are simply trying to move up the property ladder. Building outwards is one of the easiest and most common ways to improve the footprint of any property, with rear extensions being favoured as most people are happy to lose some of their gardens to improve their indoor living space.

According to CheckATrade, the average cost of a 20m2 extension is £44,000 while expanding a home can add between 10 – 20% to its value. So not only can you use adding an extension as a way to improve potential buyers’ lives and living spaces but also it can be a way to improve their returns when they come to sell.

Adding extra storeys

If the outdoor space is already limited or there isn’t much scope for a rear extension, consider whether an additional storey is a viable option. This could be a loft conversion which can be a quick way of increasing space and adding value, or perhaps a basement with lower floor conversions, which can be a great way to improve the energy efficiency of a home as there are fewer directly exposed external walls.

Of course, there is also the potential for a double-storey extension which will greatly increase its capacity but will require substantial funds. As an agency or property company, you can check whether a house is suitable for extension or additional storeys by asking for pre-planning advice from the relevant council.

Having an informal discussion can give you enough scope to know whether an extension is viable and if it’s a smart marketing strategy as you show viewers around. It requires some additional groundwork on your part but can be worth it to paint a better picture of the property’s potential to viewers who may otherwise be unsure about an extension.

Decluttering and cleaning

House viewers want to be able to imagine themselves living in the property they are being shown around but one filled with clutter and that needs cleaning can be a distraction from those thoughts. For starters, a decluttered home allows viewers to better understand how much space there is in the property they are viewing.

It is also much harder for them to envision how they would live their lives in a house if someone else’s clutter is everywhere to be seen. Sure, it’s not possible to remove the vendor from the home but encouraging them to make their home as aesthetically appealing as possible is a great boost to their chances of selling.

Similarly, a viewer who goes into a home and is met with visible dirt or dust, or perhaps some unsavoury smells, is going to have to work hard to overcome those issues to imagine themselves living there. It might be fine for a buy-to-let buyer but if you are selling the property as a home rather than an investment then it must be set up to succeed, rather than fail.

Acquiring nearby land

Sometimes an opportunity presents itself that allows a buyer to invest in more than they initially think. Consider whether there is any adjacent land available, whether it’s from a neighbour or even just a bit of extra land a freeholder is willing to part with.

This can greatly improve the prospects for potential buyers as they can expand their home, add an outbuilding, add electric car charging or look for further investment opportunities. A quick enquiry with the Land Registry can let you know who owns the land and whether it’s possible to approach a sale.

Updating doors and windows

Doors and windows can be an important selling factor when it comes to buying a home. With old doors and windows, the buyer knows the time they have until they need replacing is limited but again this is an opportunity to highlight the value of upgrading.

Whether it’s the front door, side door, or garage door, security shouldn’t be overlooked and the same goes for insulation levels, where you can show the EPC potential can enjoy a sharp rise with some new doors and windows.

Reconfiguring the layout

Open-plan living is very popular at the moment and while you won’t be able to reconfigure the layout yourself, exploring the options ahead of showing people around can help put the home’s potential into perspective.

Homes with dated kitchens are a great opportunity to showcase the potential in an open-plan layout as people will already be feeling as though they want to update it. Similarly, outdated bathrooms are a great selling point and shouldn’t immediately be something to try and gloss over.

Spending time layout out and describing what improvements are possible and how they could be easily implemented is useful information that viewers can take with them as they think about their options. Updating both rooms will not only represent a great investment but provide real value to the people who live there.

Other layout considerations to point out to potential buyers include installing a downstairs loo, adding a room in the garden as an office or creating a kitchen diner to free up another room in the house.

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By Dakota Murphey
27th April 2023

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