Before you go about presenting your home to a potential buyer, you need to have a specific plan in mind. What part of your home are you most proud of? What sort of first impression do you want to give? Which parts of your property do you most want to accentuate? These are all questions you should be asking yourself before you let prospective buyers look around your home.

Define Clutter

Of course, there's no point in proudly showing off your abode if its finer points are all hidden under clutter. When we think of clutter we tend to think of superfluous items strewn around the place in an untidy fashion, but in terms of showing your house to prospective buyers, clutter can be defined as anything that distracts from, or obscures, the finer points of your home.

For example, you will want to point out that certain rooms in your house have large windows giving your interior spaces a light and airy feel. This point is going to fall flat if the window ledges are covered in ornaments, family pictures and other oddments that distract from the window itself. These things have got to go, so put them in storage until after the viewing.

Be Brutal

Don't be tempted to show off your exquisite carriage clocks or professionally taken family portraits. The brutal truth is that a prospective buyer is not interested in this and may be turned off by the very things that you find to be tasteful and impressive.

Remove all ornamentation, right down to the posters on the walls in your kid's bedrooms. If you have to leave something, ensure that it is neutral and unobtrusive. Nothing should distract attention away from the most important thing of all; your home.

Tidy Up

An obvious point but one that many people forget; be sure to tidy up before your prospective viewers arrive. Humans are critical animals; no matter how lovely your home, if your property is a mess this will be the viewer's lasting impression.

Make sure that the "clutter" you are hiding out of the way is adequately concealed either in a shed, a garage or (if possible) in a storage facility off the property. Your aim is to create a neat, streamlined home with no external distractions.

Put the effort in, tidy up and watch the value of your property rise. It's as simple as that.

Create a Blank Canvas

Your home is an extension of yourself so it is no surprise that you are proud of it. However, it is vital to remember that if you sell up it will no longer be your home, and that any potential buyers will want to project their own life and tastes onto the property.

Create a blank canvas for them; this makes it easier for people viewing your property to visualize what it will be like when they have moved in. Make sure your collections of records, books and NFL merchandise are all safely hidden from view. You may want to show this off, but this is not what a prospective buyer wants to see.

Instead, a tour of your home should be a streamlined rundown of all the reasons why the prospective buyers should want to part with their hard earned cash. They should fall in love with the place, not be waiting for an opportunity to escape.


Make sure you air out your house before a viewing, turn the lights on and heat the property to an ambient temperature. This instantly gives viewers a positive state of mind on entry, and ensures that half of the psychological battle is won the instant they step through the door.

Ensure your home is free from all possible allergens...we're talking dust, pet hair and other potentially sneeze-inducing substances. No one is going to buy a home that makes their eyes swell up and their nose start to stream the second they cross the threshold.

Presentation, Presentation, Presentation

If you are planning to show viewers around the property yourself, always remember to retain a business like attitude during the viewing. Don't overload the viewer with detail and save the idle chit-chat until the next time you meet them. Let your home do the talking and you can't go far wrong.

Published on 11/06/12
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