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Preparing the ground for when lockdown is over

Posted: 15th April 2020

Category: General

“Preparing the Ground” –  Be Ready to Sell when Lockdown Is Over – 7 Top Tools from Martin, Head of Residential Sales at Woodward Estate Agents

Spring is the time our thoughts may turn to projects in the garden or prettying up the balcony ready for Summer ahead.   As with many things in life, preparing the ground is the most important part of ensuring a lasting and attractive outcome free of thorny problems!  If moving home is on your agenda, time during lockdown can be productively spent in other ways too.  Not least because  a pause in the normal pace of life gives fresh perspective and allows time to reflect on what you truly want to achieve, and to plan for it wisely.  

We don’t know how quickly our economy will recover in 2020 but we do know we will see  global and local efforts to make it swift.  Meantime our needs and aspirations regarding home ownership remain a constant as we all need a roof over our heads - preferably a nice one!   We are currently seeing great resilience and positivity from our customers both buying and selling as we all look forward to the day we can ease back in to normal life.  It is interesting to observe that although the uncertainty of the Brexit Years knocked a fair bit of fizz out of the market it survived largely unaltered.  With Brexit agreed we had seen  the beginnings of a recovery getting underway early this year, so if you are looking forward here are some suggestions for how to prepare your own ground for moving;

7 Tools for Sellers

#1.  De-clutter.  Making your property look as spacious, bright and uncluttered as possible will always give the best impression.  The appearance of having run out of space is never inviting to a buyer, so make use of Gumtree, Ebay, Charity shops and Facebook Marketplace to help make the clear-out a rewarding process.  If all else fails there are plenty of self-storage companies and removals firms who can store things out of the way.

#2.  DIY Jobs.  We all have odd jobs that get left undone  for want of a few minutes effort.  A door that sticks, a squeaky gate or a little re-decoration.  All these things are worthwhile. 

#3. Spruce up your Garden or Balcony.   If a garden or other outside space is a major selling point for your home, do make it look its best.  A trim to smarten up your trees and shrubs and adding colour will all help sell your home.  When the time comes for the photographer’s visit have the lawn freshly mown and your pots looking fragrant.  A bottle and a couple of glasses set on the outside furniture can also add some sparkle!

#4.  Work out the costs of moving.   A basic list includes estate agency and solicitor’s fees on your sale, plus survey, mortgage arrangement fees, Stamp Duty and removal costs if you are also buying.  Here is a useful Stamp Duty Calculator as this is worked out on a sliding scale, with additional rates or discounts sometimes applicable.

#5.  Plan for Viewings.  These days we handle 99% of viewings.  Buyers are more comfortable being shown around by the agent so tend to take their time and have a more thorough look when we show.  We take great care to educate ourselves about your property so can answer all their questions, leaving you free to take the dog for walk, shop, or head off and view properties yourself!  Our unique  Launch Events generally take place on a Saturday, so do have a think about the ideal timing. 

#6.  Do some price research.  With so many on-line tools available you can have a pretty good go at educating yourself about the market and approximate value range of your property.  The Sold Price Data of nearby homes is freely available on Rightmove here. You can also see the current temperature of the market in your area using this tool. This general knowledge then leads neatly to the final tip…

#7.  Above all else, do please Talk to Us!   Woodward are Market Experts for the Hill and the wider Harrow Borough so there is no substitute for tapping in to our expert local knowledge.  Nobody knows our area quite like us with Head of Sales, Martin Bloxham having well over 30 years’ experience locally.  Unlike a simple computer model we are at the sharp end of the market with first-hand knowledge of what buyers will currently pay, even for the most unique homes in our area.  Please call to access this deep pool of information while you have time on your hands!   We currently offer Free Valuations by Appointment using Facetime or Teams, or if you prefer please just Call Us on 020 8001 9272.  We can also be Emailed Here.