If you are selling your French property here are some tips to help show your property at its best. If you are looking to buy a property in France then you will also find these tips illuminating.
- The seller needs to take their own personality out of their house so that the prospective purchaser can visualise themselves and their things in the house. This is often very hard for vendors to do, firstly because they love their home and are very comfortable there and secondly because we don’t necessarily see the small things that we have grown accustomed to, e.g. untidy garden, half finished repairs, unnecessary clutter, dirty floors, paintwork etc.
- Take a good look at your home critically, through the buyer’s eyes. Start from the front and try to imagine whether the outside of your property would tempt you to have a look inside.
- Tidy garden in front, mend any broken guttering or slipped tiles, ensure that shutters have a relatively recent coat of paint and are not hanging off their hinges, prune wayward trees and bushes so the agent can get a lovely photo of the front – this is really vital as buyers looking on the internet can write off properties on the basis of tiny things that they believe they see in photographs. It is interesting to note that some clients house-hunting will not even get out of the car at some houses that fitted our criteria because of this!
- Make a note of all the possible improvements which would make your home more inviting. Then go inside and go through your house room by room imagining that you are a potential buyer and make a note of anything that needs mending or cleaning, clutter that needs clearing or rooms that just generally need brightening up.
- If boundaries are unclear this can sometimes put off prospective buyers and it may be worth investing in some fencing or hedging plants to define the limits of the property. This is not something that we worry about in France as space is not at such a premium as it is in the UK, but British buyers coming to France to buy a property do sometimes worry about this.
- Banish pets and children – just because it’s a lovely family home for you, this doesn’t mean that your prospective buyers will want the same thing, and they may find it hard to visualise a calm, sedate life for a retired couple if there are toys and pet hair everywhere!