Although we can continue with moves for the foreseeable future, they are still a very altered experience – read our guide on moving home during lockdown. Perhaps the biggest change to the market is the recent flourish of virtual viewings. Partaking in online viewings is expected to continue when Covid-19 finally becomes a thing of the past. With over 33% of people involved in the property market predicting virtual viewings to become commonplace from now on.
The team at Houso is seeing an increase in sales from virtual viewings. Many people are now buying properties without even setting foot within them. To increase your chances of a sale, you must jump on the bandwagon. We even suggest that offering virtual viewings when selling should be compulsory in today’s market. You will be able to open your doors to a worldwide market and to those who cannot leave their home due to government guidelines.
How can you create a great virtual viewing? Well, here are some helpful tips!
Record at head height and recreate a realistic experience. Begin at your garden path and slowly walk towards your home. Do not worry, your garden does not have to be RHS Chelsea Flower Show standard, but it must be at least neat and tidy. Cut the grass, paint your fences, trim anything overgrown and wash your windows/doors. Take your time recording at the front of your home, if you look hesitant and rushed the viewer may presume that you are hiding something.
The front garden and hallway set the tone for the rest of the house. So, again, same as the garden, tidy your hallway and do not worry if it isn’t an exciting hallway – not many are. There should be no piles of bags or shoes, yet, a coat or two on a hook will make the house more ‘homely’ and lived in. Record the entire hallway so that viewers can gain a complete understanding of the space. Open all doors and windows so that there is as much natural light as possible.
Tidiness and maintenance
We’ve already touched in this regarding the garden and hallway. However, we will mention it again! It is extremely important. Throughout your home make sure that your cushions are plumped, your pictures are straight and the curtains perfectly neat. Touch up any paintwork or scuffed woodwork. If something in your home looks uncared for, the viewer may wonder what else you have been ignoring.
Lounge/sitting room/living room
Whatever name you use for your family room, make sure that it looks lived in, but not personalised. What we mean is, allow the viewer to imagine what it’d be like for them to relax in there after a hard day at work. Remove such items as personal photographs, birthday cards and pet items. Then add flowers, candles and items that promote ‘cosiness’.
Storage, storage, storage… and more storage. When you record your kitchen and/or utility room, we recommend that you also show the inside of your cupboards. You’d be surprised by the pulling power that good storage has on buyers. Declutter your worktops and show off any posh devices you may own, for example, replace your Breville toastie maker with a fancy coffee machine that’s been hiding in your cupboard.
Bodywash and shampoo bottles are ugly – we said it! We know this may seem a bit OTT but try and pour their contents into pretty jars for your viewing, or simply out of sight. Hide your spare toilet rolls and fold your towels. Just as you did with your family room, make your bathroom cosy by adding cute features such as candles, maybe even a green plant. If any grout is stained, go over it with a grout pen – you can get these for a few pounds in stores like Wickes.
Make your bed as if you were making it for overnight guests. So far, we have suggested you do not necessarily need to part with much money for viewings. However, if your bedding is drab, it will be worthwhile getting a nice fresh set. Old bedding can be a turnoff and you will now have some nice new bedding for your new home. Add a cool book and a lamp to your bedside table and hide ALL your clothes (including your dressing gown and slippers).
We hope that these tips helped and that you’ll create awesome virtual viewings.