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New study explores British people’s ‘disgusting’ property viewing experiences

Almost half of Britons blame filthy carpets, dirty dishes in the sink and the smell of cats

Gemma Francis
Thursday 30 July 2020 14:17 BST
With more viewings taking place online due to coronavirus, a clean house and the quality of images and video has never been important
With more viewings taking place online due to coronavirus, a clean house and the quality of images and video has never been important (Getty)

Almost half of Brits have described a property viewing as “disgusting” – due to filthy carpets, dirty dishes in the sink and the smell of cats.

The study of 2,000 adults, commissioned by Mashroom and carried out by OnePoll, also found clutter and mess are among the most off putting things when looking at a potential new home.

It also emerged baking bread, making fresh coffee, and hiding all evidence of pets are among the tricks of the trade landlords use to catch the eye of the potential 4.5 million households who rent through the private sector in the UK.

But the most popular ways to present a home in the most attractive light were also among the simplest – vacuum everything, ensure the house is tidy and declutter.

In fact, the average adult spends an average of 70 minutes cleaning and tidying a home before a viewing.

In a bid to call an end to less-than-perfect viewings, a campaign has launched showing Brits how to stage their home perfectly for wannabe renters and buyers.

Online lettings portal Mashroom – which lets landlords and tenants upload video trailers of their property – has created a series to show people how to make the perfect first impression.

Over four bitesize episodes, interior designer Mo Vernon gives tips on how to stage your home and shoot the perfect showcase video in order to attract renters.

Mashroom commissioned the series after the survey revealed the horrors that turn potential buyers away from putting an offer in on a home.

The research also highlights the dangers of not putting together a good selection of photos or a video for people to view online. Three quarters of those polled said it is important to have a good video of the property before they go to see it.

Worryingly, 56 per cent admitted they had been put off a property before they’ve viewed it because of the pictures taken of the inside.

But 31 per cent of those polled have said they would be happy to judge a property based on a video viewing – saving endless time arranging viewings, travelling and having that awkward moment where the property looks nothing like its pictures.

However, over half (56 per cent) of the recipients have been put off by badly taken images in the past, proving home improvements are an essential investment when it comes to a viewing, with more than a quarter of Brits spending over £1,000 sprucing up their homes before a viewing

More than 80 per cent of Brits think a first impression is vital for selling their home and with more viewings tending to be carried out online due to the coronavirus, quality images and videos are imperative.

Mashroom CEO, Stepan Dobrovolskiy, said: “There’s a stigma that tenants aren’t ‘houseproud’, but this simply isn’t true – and we are able to reward them to make their house a home.

“Tenants will get a week’s worth of rent back if they do the viewings for the next people wanting to move in.

“We all know that first impressions matter, but in the rush of everyday life, properties are left in a less than presentable state.

“With millions of people renting and on the lookout for their new home, landlords need to up their game, so we encourage them and their tenants to watch this step by step series to showcase their property in the best way possible.

“At Mashroom you can help incentivise the outgoing tenants to do the viewings for the prospective tenants – we provide them with a week’s rent cashback if they conduct the viewings and secure your next tenant.

“That way viewings are more likely to be a success as they are going to be presented in the best light possible.

“Our research has revealed just how many landlords and sellers have fallen at the first hurdle by not presenting their property correctly for a viewing.


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