How to sell your home for more money

The most popular ‘tricks’ that sellers have employed when opening their home for viewings

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The Independent Online

Hiding family photos, taking off the sitting room door and moving the car off the driveway could increase the value of your property, according to a new study of 250 estate agents.

The research from Big Yellow Self Storage also shows that the clichéd tactics of baking fresh bread or brewing coffee before a viewing really does seem to work, adding £849 to the sale price of an average UK property. Carefully placing mirrors to create the illusion of space and light was said to add £947, removing a door £930 and taking down family photos £921.

And more than a third of the estate agents polled said de-cluttering increased the sale price every time, removing bulky items to maximise space pushing the sale price up by as much as 11 per cent. According to the report, two thirds of sellers who de-cluttered before viewings received a higher offer than they expected, £4,811 more on average, while 43 per cent of house buyers say that in hindsight they made a higher offer on a property because it had been de-cluttered and they thought it was bigger.

The most popular ‘tricks’ that sellers have employed when opening their home for viewings are:

* Painting interior walls (46 per cent)

* Fresh flowers in a vase (44 per cent)

* De-personalising the house by removing ornaments, etc. (23 per cent)

* Removing furniture and bulky items (22 per cent)

* Making fresh coffee (20 per cent)

* Taking down family photos (17 per cent)

* Moving the car out of the driveway/garage to increase perception of space (16 per cent)

The survey also indicates what puts buyers off making an offer on a property. Discolouration or smell due to smoking in the house is at the head of the list (32 per cent), followed by knick knacks and ornaments on display (26 per cent) and pet smells (26 per cent).