Home » Viewings – these problems deter would-be buyers

Carl Hooper, manager of our Southend-on-Sea branch, gives us some insight on how we can get our homes prepared in readiness to showcase them on the market. 

A new survey claims to have discovered the sights and experiences that most deter would-be buyers when they view homes on the market.

The study asked 1,266 adults who had each been to several property viewings in the past 12 months.

The key findings are unlikely to prove surprising to agents. Here are the highlights:

– extensive cracks, marks and stains on walls, ceilings and floors leave the biggest negative impression – 76 per cent;

– fixtures and fittings that do not function property – such as toilets, taps and the like – cause problems for 71 per cent;

– exposed wires cause concern to 66 per cent while 63 per cent say they are deterred by floors being broken or damaged;

– with the kitchen a focal point in a home for many, heavily damaged or worn out kitchen cabinets hinder the prospects for 54 per cent;

– mould featured rather low down the list, at 49 per cent;

– damaged or stained carpets distressed 18 per cent; and

– at the bottom came missing or broken door or cupboard handles, at 15 per cent.

Hair & Son have come up with a guide to help tackle these problems:

Tips on how to show your home in the best light…

A show house Nobody buys a house without looking at it. Our details will describe your property in a way which will attract potential buyers – not just a boring catalogue of power points and kitchen sinks, but an attractive description highlighting its best features. But the eyes have it – and we hope these notes will help you to ensure the property you want to sell looks its best when buyers view.

First impressions: Keep the front clean and tidy – lawns trimmed, flower beds cultivated and, above all, free of rubbish and clutter. In bad weather, be sure that paths and steps are free from snow and ice. Keep the driveway clear and the gates open and leave room to park. Make your home look inviting to your buyer.

Light the way: At night, keep a warm, welcoming light shining. Keep the porch or hall light on. Make sure the house number or name can be seen from the road – and if you have one, make sure the doorbell works.

Cats and canines: Never assume your viewer is happy to be around your pet so consider a secure comfortable area of the property for your cat or dog to stay in for the duration of the viewing.

A chance to shine: …but if its too artificial, buyers may wonder why. Tidy up any peeling wallpaper and damaged paintwork. Full redecoration is unnecessary, but a little thought about presentation can help – a quicker sale or better price might be the result. Clean windows will also help, a dirty window will be remembered more than a clean one.

Fix that tap, tap, tap: …and replace broken lightbulbs. These minor issues may not sound important but we want the purchasers to feel that your house has been well cared for. If you appear to have let little things go – what about the bigger problems?

D.I.Y. …if you can, but if not get someone to fix or replace broken sash cords, warped doors, missing door knobs, broken slates – these features can let your property down.

Tidy up: A well-ordered kitchen with neat, clean cupboards adds appeal, keep on top of washing up. Keep your bathroom clean, tidy and bright. Try to make the bed early in the day and keep all bedrooms tidy – in that way they can look more spacious and accommodating. Rumpled bedclothes and washing on the floor make bedrooms look smaller than they really are.

Storage space sells too! Display the full value of your storage space by keeping cupboards, basements and attics tidy. Throw out unwanted rubbish – you will be doing so when you move anyway.

Music is a turn-off …and does not help when showing people around. Turn off the radio, music station and the television. No distractions and disturbances.

The grand tour: Present your home as best you can – after all, it is your home and it suits your requirements for the moment. If a vendor is helpful and truthful, a purchaser will quickly sense it – mislead and confidence will quickly evaporate.  Don’t apologise for it – by doing so might suggest problems that don’t exist. If your buyers seem interested, let them have another look around on their own. Offer to answer their questions but then let them look at their own leisure. They are making a big decision.


To speak with your local office and find out more about how Hair & Son can market your property in the best light, please the following contact details:


Sales Southend-on-sea 01702 341177 southend@hairandson.co.uk

Lettings Southend-on-sea (for all areas) 01702 341177 lettings@hairandson.co.uk

Sales Thorpe Bay 01702 582255 thorpebay@hairandson.co.uk

Sales Rayleigh 01268 774316 rayleigh@hairandson.co.uk

Sales Leigh-on-sea 01702 470066 thamesdrive@hairandson.co.uk

Sales Wickford 01268 763477 enquiries@rona.co.uk