Painting the front door will make a property more saleable, it is claimed

Focus on de-cluttering and small DIY jobs for a quick sale, say experts

Property owners wanting a quick sale should worry less about cleaning windows and buying fresh flowers, and spend more time repainting the front door and replacing old gates, according to new research.

Many owners have misconceptions regarding factors which may help them to sell their property, the 2012 HSBC Home Improvement Survey shows.

Over half of UK householders, some 52%, plan to spend time over the Bank Holidays this spring making home improvements. The research, which questioned house holders and property valuation experts, also revealed the smaller jobs around the house which can help homeowners to sell their property.

Some 60% of property valuers said that the number one way to increase a property’s chance of selling quickly, and for a healthy price, was to de-clutter. Cutting the grass and repairing paint chips will also improve house selling prospects.

However, over two thirds , 69%, of home owners thought cleaning the windows would be worthwhile, compared to just 44% of the property experts. In addition, while 63% of the experts said that repainting or varnishing a front door would make a difference, only 23% of homeowners recognise this.

Householders should also worry less about putting rubbish bins out of sight or washing the car, and concentrate instead on repairing old fences and gates.

‘Many householders spend the Bank Holidays on DIY projects to help boost property value and saleability. However it is often the smaller jobs like painting the front door that can make all the difference when looking for a quick sale,’ said Peter Dockar, head of mortgages at HSBC.

There are also some differing opinions. Buying fresh flowers to put indoors will make a difference according to 38% of owners but just 7% of experts believe it would do so. But there is agreement when it comes to putting new plants in the garden or in pots on a terrace with 20% of both groups thinking it will make a difference.

The survey also revealed that the potential increase in property value as a result of home improvements has dipped in the past year.

The survey found that refitting or altering a home, although beneficial, may not provide the same level of financial return in today’s market than may have been the case in previous years.

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