Thinking of selling your home? Make first impressions count

Couple viewing a home interior with an estate agent

If you're putting your house on the market this year, a little preparation can go a long way - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

We may just only be a few weeks into 2022 but Christmas and the New Year are already starting to feel like a distant memory – fast disappearing into January’s rear view mirror.

Since we returned from the festive break our new homes team has continued to be exceptionally busy, with sites at Ashfield Farm in Elmswell, near Bury St Edmunds, The Lilacs in Trimley St Martin near Felixstowe, Deben Meadows in Woodbridge and The Limes in Great Cornard all attracting plenty of interest.

The real issue is lack of stock. Strength of demand is consistently outweighing supply and levels of activity are such that properties are still being reserved within days of becoming available.

RMG Photography - July 2017Savills - Staff portraits - 2017.Pic - Richard Marsham/RMG Photography

Max Turner, who leads the new homes team at Savills Ipswich - Credit: Richard Marsham/RMG Photography

The lifestyle changes that have driven the market since the start of the pandemic continue to be a big motivator for buyers. Sites in well-connected villages have been particularly sought after – as are those in coastal areas and the traditionally popular market towns.

With lots of competition, prospective buyers need to ensure they are in the strongest possible position. In most cases people are likely to have a home of their own to put on the market before moving. So what can you do to ensure your property has the best chance of selling?

Hardwood flooring with cubbyhole lockers

First impressions really do count, so make sure your hallway is tidy with everything tucked away - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

It’s an old cliché but first impressions count. Indeed, according to a recent Savills survey of more than 3,000 buyers and sellers, 67% of home movers said they fell in love with their home “at first sight”. Just 11% described it as a “slow burn”.

If you’re putting your house on the market this year, a little preparation can go a long way:

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  • Make sure everything visible on arrival – timber fascias on gable ends, roof tiles, entrance porches and front gardens for example – is well presented. Window sills and frames should be cleaned and repaired if necessary.
  • De-clutter the entrance hall to give a feeling of space: think about adding a side table, coat hooks or stand, shoe rack, and so on.
  • While it's not always essential to redecorate, focusing on key rooms such as the kitchen, breakfast room, dining room and reception rooms can make a difference.
  • Make the rooms inviting with fully dressed beds, accessorised ensuite bathrooms and appropriate lighting, all of which can help a viewer envisage themselves living in the property. The same goes for the kitchen, dining room and reception spaces.
  • Remove anything that might sow seeds of doubt – damp patches, superficial cracks in plaster or stains on ceilings or walls left by previously fixed leaks. Such things are typically inexpensive to remedy but can be off-putting.
  • If the property is not currently lived in, ensure it is heated prior to winter or early spring viewings.
  • Tastes differ hugely and you want to appeal to as many viewers as possible, so keep decoration neutral and appropriate to the property’s period and style.
Feminine bedroom interior with a double bed with dotted sheets, armchair, art collection and plants

Do all you can to make a good impression - including making up beds - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

For advice on the new homes market in Suffolk contact Max Turner at Savills Suffolk on 01473 234826 or