Getting your home ready (you never get a second chance to make a first impression).

Whether your planning to put your property on the market in three, six or even in 12 months time it really helps if you understand where you are in the market, this knowledge will guide you in planning your move. You never know how long it will take to sell your home, or what changes you may need to make in order to maximise opportunities within the market, leading to a successful sale. Should you need to get people in to work on your home, plan this meticulously, factor in realistic timings, as contractors can take a long time.

You don't want to leave anything to the 11th hour.

Invite an Agent to view your property and give you a valuation. Ask them for any recommendations of anything you can do that might raise the value and desirability of your home. Ask them what others in your area have done? An experienced Agent will be highly knowledgeable about this and know what you should do to speed up your properties selling time.

Research an Agent's online marketing

Here are three things you can do to see if an Agent is right for you. You can do these before you even pick up the phone to call them to book an appointment.

  • Visit their website. Does it look professional, is it informative, or does it look as if no real effort has been put into it? If you can, check how much experience their individual Agents have, because the last thing you need is someone straight out of College, with no or little experience handing your biggest asset.
  • Look at their social media, are they active online? Do they understand the ever growing importance social media now has in selling properties?
  • Look at how they are currently presenting the properties they are selling. Not to find out how many properties they are selling, look deeper, do they have professional looking photographs, do the property descriptions look accurate? Ask yourself if this is how you would like to see your property marketed.

Use the following criteria to help you select the right Agent

The biggest mistake I see many sellers making when choosing an Agent is basing this decision on what the Agent says the property is worth and the fees which will be charged against this valuation, neither of these factors will have any baring on the price you are ultimately going to achieve from your sale.

It is widely acknowledged that 90% of the price will be determined by what the market will pay.

Therefore the conversation you should be having with an Agent is about how are they going to achieve the extra 10% for you. This is where a great Agent excels through a combination of exposure and skill.

Some questions to ask on exposure.

  • Do they understand the power of social media?
  • What strategies do they adopt to reach inactive buyers? For example, do they only market on portals such as Rightmove and Zoopla?
  • What proactive local marketing activities will they undertake in the selling of your home? For example, producing flyers and directly reaching out to the community to market your property?
  • How large is their database? How proactive are they with this? Do they simply send out emails or do they actively call people?
  • Are they proactive are they sharing their stock with other local property professionals, to tap into multiple databases? Are you aware that no one Agent covers more than 8% of the market.
  • What is their National and International reach?

Mystery shop potential agents and look out for the following to test their skills

  • Standards of response to buyer enquiry
  • Response to seller enquiry.
  • Call/Email response times.
  • How they react to a potentially low offer
  • How objections are handled
  • How they differentiate themselves in the market place

Pricing correctly

If the price you set for your property is too high, you're likely to end up with some (or all) of the following problems:

  • The first four weeks of marketing your property are critical in selling and if you are priced out of the market, you will lose momentum and you'll find it a challenge to regain an advantage. An appropriately listed price will immediately and consistently attach attention and generate activity.
  • By pricing too high you are actively helping the competition. Buyers will compare your property with others within their price range and make judgements based on this factor, it is therefore critical that your home is competitive in both price and appeals to the factors that prospective buyers are looking for.
  • The most common question a buyer asks is; “How long has the property been on the market?” If your property has been on the market for more than three months, buyers automatically think that there is something wrong with the property and that no one else want to buy it. From a buyers perspective, the longer a property is on the market, the less it is worth!


Every neighbourhood and each home is different, so it's highly likely that your target audience will be different too. For example: summer is the school holiday period and families prefer to move in before the start of the new school year in September. Many people think winter is the slowest season for selling homes, however data from Rightmove shows days after Christmas is their busiest days of the year.

While it is important to identify your buyer and understand their time scale, it is also vital to understand that there are strategies which can be applied in a traditionally slow selling time of year, which can yield high results, therefore if your circumstances do not give you the luxury of waiting, this could be an option for you to take.

To summarise: prepare your home, choose the right Agent, price correctly and launch!

Planning to sell? We would love to hear from you and see if MyCityNest can help you. Book your free 20-minute telephone Consultation and find out what you need to do to get your house sold.

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