A bad neighbourhood can devalue your property

16 January 2015

Estate agents were asked which three things they believe most devalue a home. A bad neighbourhood topped the bill with 75% of the vote.

High local crime rates came in second with 43% and followed by loud, unfriendly neighbours at 31%. Badly performing schools received 28% of the vote.

In terms of the property itself, a poor kitchen most devalues a property with 30% of the vote, bad smells came in second place with 23% and mess in third place with 21%.
Simon King, Director of Move with Us commented: “Buying a home is a big purchase and requires lots of research, particularly if it’s in a new area. Any would be home owners can check local crime statistics at the government site www.neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk and how well a school is performing at www.ofsted.co.uk. It’s also a good idea to ensure there are great transport links and lots of local amenities in the area. It can be fun conducting research by dining out at local restaurants and visiting the local pubs. A recommended, accredited estate agent will be able to advise you on the local area if you are unfamiliar with it.”
“Anyone interested in selling could consider investing a little time and money in upgrading a rundown kitchen or bathroom. This doesn’t have to be a big expenditure as a fresh coat of paint and some new doors for the kitchen cupboards can work wonders. Tidying up the property before viewings is an absolute must and doesn’t cost anything other than a little elbow grease. Aside from making the property feel more spacious, it will give the owners the assurance the property has been cared for which is crucial for such a life changing transaction.”
Seven top tips for sellers:
To help homeowners prepare for a sale, Move with Us shares a few top tips, which will help achieve the best price for their home and attract a serious buyer faster:
1. Air it out 
Smoking and other bad smells are the number one most off-putting factor to buyers. Make sure your home is well aired so it smells fresh and clean. Empty ashtrays and leave them outside, take out the rubbish and if you have pets, put feeding bowls and litter trays away for viewings. It’s also a nice touch to buy some air fresheners or put a pot of fresh coffee on for when potential buyers arrive.
2. Make sure there’s enough light
Take advantage of natural light. Pull curtains back, remove nets and light any gloomy corners. 
3. Disappear for viewings
60% of buyers prefer it if the owner isn’t present during a viewing. This harps back to the psychological trick of letting the viewer feel as though the property is theirs. During viewings, allow the estate agent to show purchasers around. You can always be on call to answer any questions the estate agent may not know. This also means the property will seem larger with less people in it, the buyer will be free to ask any questions they like, they’ll feel less pressured to be polite which will lead to honest feedback. 
4. Clear worktops
Clear your kitchen worktops. Messy work surfaces and microwaves give the impression there’s a lack of storage.
5. Prepare for drive-by viewings
Buyers will drive past the property to check it out. Look at your property objectively from the road and ask yourself: Is the garden well maintained? Can rubbish be stored out of view? Are the windows and doors clean?
6. Neutralise the property
Neutralising your property will allow buyers to imagine it as their home. You can achieve this by putting away family photos and opting for a cream colour scheme.
7. Create space
Store unnecessary furniture away and tidy up to create an impression of space. Around a third of properties are untidy for viewings, putting off 22% of home buyers.

Research conducted by Move with Us, home of the largest network of independent estate agents has revealed that a bad neighbourhood most devalues a home.

Estate agents were asked which three things they believe most devalue a home. A bad neighbourhood topped the bill with 75% of the vote. High local crime rates came in second with 43% and followed by loud, unfriendly neighbours at 31%. Badly performing schools received 28% of the vote.

In terms of the property itself, a poor kitchen most devalues a property with 30% of the vote, bad smells came in second place with 23% and mess in third place with 21%.

Simon King, Director of Move with Us commented: “Buying a home is a big purchase and requires lots of research, particularly if it’s in a new area. Any would be home owners can check local crime statistics at the government site www.neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk and how well a school is performing at www.ofsted.co.uk. It’s also a good idea to ensure there are great transport links and lots of local amenities in the area. It can be fun conducting research by dining out at local restaurants and visiting the local pubs. A recommended, accredited estate agent will be able to advise you on the local area if you are unfamiliar with it.”

“Anyone interested in selling could consider investing a little time and money in upgrading a rundown kitchen or bathroom. This doesn’t have to be a big expenditure as a fresh coat of paint and some new doors for the kitchen cupboards can work wonders. Tidying up the property before viewings is an absolute must and doesn’t cost anything other than a little elbow grease. Aside from making the property feel more spacious, it will give the owners the assurance the property has been cared for which is crucial for such a life changing transaction.”

Seven top tips for sellers:

To help homeowners prepare for a sale, Move with Us shares a few top tips, which will help achieve the best price for their home and attract a serious buyer faster:

1. Air it out

Smoking and other bad smells are the number one most off-putting factor to buyers. Make sure your home is well aired so it smells fresh and clean. Empty ashtrays and leave them outside, take out the rubbish and if you have pets, put feeding bowls and litter trays away for viewings. It’s also a nice touch to buy some air fresheners or put a pot of fresh coffee on for when potential buyers arrive.

2. Make sure there’s enough light

Take advantage of natural light. Pull curtains back, remove nets and light any gloomy corners.

3. Disappear for viewings

60% of buyers prefer it if the owner isn’t present during a viewing. This harps back to the psychological trick of letting the viewer feel as though the property is theirs. During viewings, allow the estate agent to show purchasers around. You can always be on call to answer any questions the estate agent may not know. This also means the property will seem larger with less people in it, the buyer will be free to ask any questions they like, they’ll feel less pressured to be polite which will lead to honest feedback.

4. Clear worktops

Clear your kitchen worktops. Messy work surfaces and microwaves give the impression there’s a lack of storage.

5. Prepare for drive-by viewings

Buyers will drive past the property to check it out. Look at your property objectively from the road and ask yourself: Is the garden well maintained? Can rubbish be stored out of view? Are the windows and doors clean?

6. Neutralise the property

Neutralising your property will allow buyers to imagine it as their home. You can achieve this by putting away family photos and opting for a cream colour scheme.

7. Create space

Store unnecessary furniture away and tidy up to create an impression of space. Around a third of properties are untidy for viewings, putting off 22% of home buyers.

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