According to research, March is the best month to put your property on the market in the UK if you want to sell quickly and for the best price - and this March is no exception. Lockdown conditions and work and lifestyle changes have been inspiring people to move, but freezing weather conditions and homeschooling restrictions have kept them from acting. As such, many are awaiting the kinder conditions that spring will offer.
London in particular is poised for a boom in sales this spring. The pandemic slowed the housing market for a while, but the stamp duty holiday has helped fuel demand, with new figures from the Office for National Statistics showing that the average price in the capital hit £514,000 in November 2020, a jump of 9.7% over the last year.
That’s a record high and the first time London’s average house prices have gone over the half a million mark.
Interestingly, the pandemic conditions have created a two-fold demand hike for London properties too, with those seeking more space heading for the outer boroughs, while those eager to move to inner London have been further motivated by the temporary changes to property tax.
So, if you are thinking of selling or renting out your property, now is the time to prepare it for listing. Here’s our guide on getting your home maintenance in order and sprucing up your property to achieve the best possible asking price or rental valuation.
Top maintenance tips if you’re thinking of selling or renting your property
There is often no end to the improvements you could make to a property, but there are a few solid and realistic options to consider before selling or renting out your property to make it more desirable.
Update your oldest fixtures and fittings
Cost-effective changes that can add value to your property include replacing outdated furniture and fixtures. Modernising old bathroom vanities, replacing kitchen countertops, light fittings or even a few tiles can go a long way to improving the overall impression and value of your home.
Clean up the garden
Your front garden or property exterior is the first thing people will see, so it pays to have ‘curb appeal’. Rake up the leaves, remove the weeds, cut bushes and trees back and give the lawn a fresh trim. A fresh lick of paint can be incredibly helpful too, adding around £7,000 to the sale price tag, according to research.
Clean the window coverings and make your windows sparkle
It sounds obvious, but windows are often overlooked until you take a cloth to them and realise just how dirty and marked they are! Washing and thoroughly polishing all of your windows and mirrors will add to the attractiveness of your home and help secure viewings. Another easily overlooked item for cleaning are the curtains and blinds throughout the house. Remove spider webs and accumulated dust from blinds and shutters and send your curtains to the dry cleaners - you’ll be amazed at the difference.
Polish the floors
Unless they are fairly new, hardwood floors should ideally be refinished. Make your tiled floor sparkle, bleach dulled or dirty grout and thoroughly clean rugs and mats.
Arrange some flowers
Spring-inspired daffodils and yellow tulips induce feelings of contentment and happiness so ideally place them near the entrance, as well as choosing some low allergy flower arrangements for inside the home to bring fragrance and colour indoors.
Add some extra home comforts - or opt for our Concierge Sales Package!
At Portico, we have recently released a new Concierge sales package to help properties sell in the quickest time possible and for the maximum price. The package offers:
- An immersive virtual tour of your home using 3D rendering. The tour is then hosted on the Matterport site and linked to portico.com, Rightmove, Zoopla and OnTheMarket.
- Services of a Portico Handyman. The service will provide you with labour and materials up to a maximum value of £100 and can include jobs like repainting skirting or walls, re-grouting, repairing wooden floors, fixing door handles, cupboards, furniture, changing light bulbs and giving the whole place a professional clean.
- ‘Home Staging’ using Computer Generated Imagery (CGI). We use the photographs of your existing rooms and add furniture and fittings or make other changes to the photograph digitally to create images that appeal to the market. Check out our before and after example photos to see the difference it makes!
Does your rental property pass the ‘MOT test’?
The Lettings Industry Council produced a ‘property MOT’ initiative for rental properties back in 2018, and since then, there has been a lot of talk on whether these checklists should be mandatory. While it’s unlikely this scheme will get the go-ahead anytime soon, it’s imperative landlords stay on top of the maintenance of their rental property/properties.
Currently, landlords must have an Energy performance certificate (EPC) with a minimum rating of E in order to let out their property, and gas and electric checks must be up to date. This goes hand in hand with the 2018 Homes (Fitness for Habitation) Bill, requiring all properties in the rental sector to be free from health risks and safe for tenants. This act gives tenants the power to impose legal action upon any landlord not meeting these standards.
Similarly, landlord obligations in regards to maintenance have not changed as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Routine inspections should be delayed until the coronavirus measures have been lifted, but urgent health and safety issues that affect a property’s fitness for human habitation must be fixed, and landlords and contractors can continue to visit properties in order to assess and fix these issues.
Read More: Covid-19 Changes To Lettings Legislation
Get some help!
It can be overwhelming to consider taking care of your property’s maintenance and repairs alone, especially when trying to prepare a property for sale or rent.
At Portico, we are proud to be able to offer trusted and affordable local handyman and cleaning services to assist you in getting your property’s maintenance conditions and standard of care in order. You are welcome to use these services whether you are an existing client or not.
Visit our maintenance section for more information on what services are available in your area, or give us a call on 020 7099 6999. !
You can also get an instant, online property valuation if you’re curious as to how much your home is worth, or use our online rent calculator to see how much you could make by renting your property out.