With average property prices around £250,000, demand is at an all-time high, but kerb appeal remains essential to attract viewings. Changes to our way of life as a result of the pandemic has raised awareness of the need to protect our wildlife, putting outside spaces at the top of many buyers’ priorities for entertaining family and friends, and growing vegetables.
Whilst estate agents advise owners to keep interiors tidy for viewing, the same isn’t always necessarily the same when it comes to gardens, which are integral to a home’s atmosphere. As more people are home working, casual interest in gardening develops wellbeing, and soon becomes a passion!
So, treat potential buyers to an environmentally friendly, sustainable, approach to maintaining that all-important space.
At this time of year, trees are dropping their leaves, so remove them from paths for safety, but instead of dumping them in a bin, make compost, or put them in borders to encourage wildlife which use leaves for nesting, and as they rot down, attract worms and beetles, providing food. Bird houses, feeders, and bowls of fresh water can bring a surprising variety of feathered friends into the smallest of outside spaces, enabling participation in The RSPB’s annual survey, checking numbers for each species.
Garden Wildlife – Hedgehog
Established neighbourhoods and new developments are being encouraged to create ‘hedgehog highways’, with small holes in fences allowing them access to gardens.
They are delightful, harmless creatures, hibernating in winter under sheds, in clumps of leaves or woodpiles; you can also make/buy hedgehog houses. Always check the guidance on how to keep them safe.
Never set fire to a pile of garden debris without checking for hedgehogs and never use poisonous pellets to kill slugs and snails; hedgehogs, and birds, will do the job for you!
Window boxes are another opportunity to enhance the look of a property, whatever its size and location. A touch of seasonal colour lifts the spirits at all times of the year, but especially during the long dark days of winter.
Pots of seasonal bulbs are another attraction, illustrating the care lavished on a property, giving buyers confidence that it has been well looked after, inside and out, contributing to community spirit, which can be undermined by any indication of neglect.
Whether you are upsizing, or downsizing, finding that reliable buyer, who will learn to love the property you are leaving is as important as making your own choice of new home. As soon as you make the decision to move, get your finances in order, including a mortgage in principle.
With viewings mainly online, good photography is key, but a detailed surveyor’s report, rather than simply a mortgage valuation, is advisable to ensure that a property lives up to its presentation, is well constructed and maintained. Give the surveyor an idea of any improvements, such as an extension or upgrading the kitchen/bathroom are planned, so the surveyor can highlight any issues which may increase costs.
Our friendly, trained consultants at The Mortgage Centres can take you through the buying process, advising on the best options for your financial wellbeing.