When it comes to selling a house, there are lots of questions about how clean the property needs to be when you hand the keys over. Some homeowners will ensure that the place is spotless, and some, especially those who are selling a house that wasn’t in the best condition, to begin with, may not go to the same lengths. We decided to put some information together for any homeowner looking to sell, so they can see the difference it makes spending some time getting the place spick and span!
Can I sell if my house is messy?
Generally, houses that are messy will take longer to sell simply because it can be difficult for your potential buyers to look past the clutter and see the property for what it is. This doesn’t mean that it’s impossible, but after speaking to buyers that have viewed several houses when looking to buy, they confirmed that a house that hasn’t been cleaned before they visit is off-putting and has resulted in them losing interest in more than one property.
Some buyers aren’t as phases by clutter and mess, especially if they are investors and builders and can see the potential of the house, however, this is a rarer outcome and so it’s recommended that homeowners spend some time getting their house as presentable as possible when looking to sell – especially if you’re looking to sell your house fast.
Where do I start?
Cleaning your house before selling can feel like a huge job, but there are some tips and tricks that you can utilise to make it easier for you. Take it room by room and make sure to check the spots that may not be included in your regular cleaning!
The kitchen is one of the biggest build-ups of mess in a house, so starting here can help you feel like you’ve made a big dent in the task at hand and motivate you to get the rest done –
- Empty cupboards, get rid of anything out of date and put them back in order
- Clean crumbs out of the toaster
- Clean the oven, including the door and the racks
- Scrub and disinfect your hob
- If needed, defrost the freezer
- Wipe out the fridge and freezer, especially the drip trays and drawers inside the fridge
- Clean out the microwave
- Descale the kettle
- Clean out the sink and wipe down all surfaces
- Wipe down windowsills
- Clean splashback
- Sweep and mop the floor.
Any visitors can be put off by an unclean bathroom, so make sure that this is always kept on top of so you can know your viewers will see it at its best every time!
- Get rid of cluttered bottles that you don’t need or use, and put as much out of sight as possible
- Scrub down shower walls and the shower door/screen
- Clean the bath
- Clean and bleach the toilet, including the underside and the floor behind it
- Clean any mirrors – use newspaper for a streak-free wipe!
- Wipe down the windows and windowsills
- Dust vents if needed
- Sweep and mop the floor
- Add an air freshener
In the rest of the house, organising is the key for the room to be welcoming and interesting to your buyers.
Your lounge area is less likely to be dirty, but a little messy and in need of staging –
- Hoover the room, including sofa cushions if needed
- Dust any surfaces
- Organise tangled wires as these are unsightly
- Fluff cushions
- Clear any surfaces, especially coffee tables that become cluttered very easily
- Tidy any shelves, and where possible minimise the number of items on them
- Open curtains for lots of natural light
Bedrooms can be the easiest rooms to stay on top of, especially if you clean them each week.
- Open curtains, letting in natural light
- Tidy up, put away any washing and books etc
- Change the bedding before viewings
- Ensure all of the beds are made
- Dust surfaces
- Try to minimise clutter and keep things put away
- Clean any mirrors
- Hoover the floors
Cleaning your house before you sell can help you in lots of ways – not only increasing the chance of your sale, but it also reduces the amount that you’ve got to do when you move out. Packing and getting ready for a new home is stressful enough, so taking out the need to deep clean will give you some peace of mind and let you focus on the other more exciting aspects!