Swoffers has over 40 years’ experience in selling property in Guernsey, so you couldn’t be in better hands.
Contact us on 01481 711766, and we’ll talk through with you how we will sell your property efficiently and for the right price. You can also look at our step-by-step guide to selling your property to give you an outline of what’s involved.
1. Have your property valued
If you are looking to buy another home, you’ll need to know what price bracket you can look in and what finance to arrange. Swoffers pride themselves on knowing the market inside out and will give you an honest and realistic valuation.
2. Ready your house for sale
It really is worthwhile preparing your home for us to take photos and for when potential buyers come to view. Making an effort now can help sell your property faster, and may even add to its value.
Declutter – but don’t depersonalise
- Get rid of all the excess stuff that has accumulated in every nook and cranny. Consider putting things into storage.
- People need to be able to envisage what the property would look like if they were living there. People often find this difficult, so make it easy for them to see all the fantastic living space you’re offering them.
- Don’t make it look like a generic hotel; leave some personality. Apart from anything else it gives unimaginative buyers suggestions as to what they might do.
- People are often buying into a lifestyle as much as a property. Show them the attractive side of your lifestyle.
- Consider removing any bulky furniture that makes the room feel small and replacing it with smaller furniture.
A fresh lick of paint
- Giving your walls a fresh lick of paint, neutral paint will make your home seem lighter and bigger
- It will enable the viewers to more easily imagine how they would adapt the rooms to their needs.
- It will be easier for the buyers to move in and use the rooms immediately than if the walls were still bright purple or lime green.
- Create a good first impression – give the front door a new coat of brightly coloured paint.
Fix and clean
- Make any minor repairs necessary – holes in walls, broken door knobs, cracked tiles, torn or threadbare carpets. Many buyers want to move in without making changes, so allow for this.
- Clean everything until it sparkles. Get rid of limescale, clean and repair tile grout, wax wooden floors, get rid of all odours, hang up fresh towels. This will make the place more appealing and allow viewers to imagine living there.
- Tidy up the garden: cut bushes back, clean the patio and furniture of lichen and dirt, and cut the grass. While this doesn’t add much value to your home it makes it more likely to sell as people visualise themselves using the garden.
Update the kitchen
- The kitchen is the most valuable room in a house. It is worth the most per square foot and can make the difference when buyers are unsure.
- Consider refacing your kitchen cabinets. This is much cheaper than installing new cabinets and often as effective.
- Upgrading kitchen counter tops is expensive, but can add serious value.
- Declutter the surfaces and just leave a bowl of fruit out. Take out any bulky appliances.
- Consider upgrading the plumbing fixtures and white goods, but keep in mind that while that could make your property sell faster, you will be unlikely to recoup their full value.
Light and airy
- Wall mirrors make a room look much bigger and lighter. Consider putting some up, especially in smaller rooms or hallways.
- Clean windows inside and out, and replace any broken light bulbs. Making the place feel light and airy makes rooms feel bigger and the property more attractive.
- Ensure that you have lamps on in any dark corners.
- Putting a soft lamp in the bathroom can create a warm glow.
Light a fire
- If it’s a cold evening, or even chilly day, light your fire. Consider burning some pinecones for the delicious smell. This will make your home feel warm and inviting. If you don’t have a fire then ensure the fireplace is clean.
Make it look pretty
- Make sure the windows are properly dressed with blinds or curtains as naked windows make a place feel impersonal and run down. Buy some cheap ones if necessary.
- Plants and flowers bring colour, life and light to a room and also smell nice. So does that fruit bowl on your kitchen counter.
Get the right smells
- Bad smells are the single biggest turn off for prospective buyers. Don’t just cover them up, fix the source of the smell. Clear drains, wash bins, open windows, air the kitchen from old cooking smells, consider moving pet beds out for the duration of viewings.
- If you are a smoker, place bowls of vinegar around the house and leave out for three days. Though the vinegar will smell when you open the windows it will disappear quickly taking a most of the stale cigarette smell out with it.
- Conversely, good smells can make a property feel like an alluring home. While it might be impractical to bake fresh bread, cakes or brownies for every viewer that visits your home, you could perhaps brew some fresh coffee.
3. Agree the sale price
You can place your property on the market at whatever price you’d like to, but we’ll give you advice on what we feel we should advertise it at. This will be based on our experience and knowledge of the market at the time and of similar properties.
We will always try to give you reasonable notice before bringing potential buyers around to view your home. If you can, try to clean, tidy and air the property. If you have one parking space, move your car so that it easy for the viewers to park. We’ll give you feedback on what the prospective buyers thought of your property.
As soon as we have any offers on your property, we’ll get in touch and you can decide whether or not to accept them. We’ll always give you our honest opinion of whether or not we think the offer is fair.
6. Under offer
Once you’ve accepted an offer, draft of conditions of sale will be drawn up which will include a provisional completion date that you’ve agreed (this will always be a Tuesday or Thursday). The buyer will then need to go through a number of processes to satisfy their lender. This will include survey, title search and confirming their finance is in place.
7. Signing conditions of sale
When the conditions of sale are signed unconditionally, the completion date is finalised and the buyer pays a deposit, usually 10%, which is normally held by Swoffers. If the buyer subsequently decides not to purchase your property, that 10% will be passed to you. If, on the other hand, you decide not to proceed with the sale, you are legally obliged to give the buyer 10% of the agreed sale price.
8. Get ready to move
See our guide to moving home for tips on moving and for a checklist of who to inform.
Go to court, hand over keys and relax, it’s all over!