Tag Archives: Home Staging

New Year, New Opportunities: Preparing your home for a New Year sale

Preparing your home for sale is vitally important – it can help to sell your property more quickly, and more importantly, can add extra value to the sale price.

You don’t have to invest a ton of money to make your home more appealing to potential buyers – a few tips and tricks might just do the trick.

#Step 1 – Clear the clutter

It’s very important that people are able to visualise what the property would look like if they were going to live there.

So get rid of all excess items that have accumulated around the place – people like space. If you have large pieces of furniture, consider moving them out or re-arranging to make rooms look larger.

Put DVD’s/CD’s away, make sure the washing up is done, clear work surfaces, put laundry away, clear away toys and move pet beds away from living rooms.

#Step 2 – Clean like you’ve never cleaned before

Cleanliness is so important. It makes buyers feel that the home is well cared for. By cleanliness we mean, spotless and shiny, from the top of doorways to the corners of the floors and all the areas in between. There should not be a surface of the home that hasn’t been touched when the house goes on the market.

Pay particular attention to the kitchen and bathroom. The kitchen is the most important room in the house and can really make the difference when a buyer has doubts or is choosing between your property and another. Make sure that work surfaces are clean and tidy – clear surfaces to make the kitchen look bigger. Clean the appliances and remove any grease.

If your kitchen really has seen better days, you might consider changing the doors on the kitchen cabinets, which can be done relatively inexpensively and will make a significant difference to how the kitchen looks. Get rid of any limescale stains and clean or replace mouldy grouting in both the kitchen and bathroom.

Make sure the toilet is clean and fresh, the seat is down and the mirrors are gleaming. Put out new towels as they always look nice.

#Step 3 – Fix everything no matter how insignificant it may appear

Do any minor repairs, fill and repaint cracks and replace items that are broken or damaged. Make sure hinges are adjusted, taps don’t drip and any other minor issues are fixed. Even the smallest repairs can make a big difference when it comes to selling your home. You want your house to be in the best shape possible.

# Step 4 – A new lick of paint makes all the difference

A bright and airy home will give a feeling of space. Keep everything as neutral as possible by sticking to a cream or off white to maximise light reflection.

# Step 5 – The sweet smell of success

Bad smells are a real turn off! Make sure your property is well aired and smells good. Don’t just cover the smell – remove the source if you can.

Make sure waste bins are emptied, sheets & towels are fresh and pet bedding is clean. Open windows and clean surfaces with a fresh scented cleaner to remove cooking and smoking odours. Leaving a bowl of vinegar for a few days will help absorb the smell of smoke which will disappear once you have opened the windows for a while.

Try not to use air-freshener – it smells synthetic and many people are allergic to it.

On the other hand, good smells can make a property really welcoming – a pot of coffee brewing can really do the trick and fresh cut flowers look good and smell nice.

# Step 6 – You only get one chance to make a first impression

It is quite common for people to drive by your house before they decide to view, so when your visitor sees the property they will immediately make a judgement about it.

Make sure that the front of the property is clean and tidy. Move bins out of site. If you have one, tidy the garden, cut back the shrubs, clean and tidy patios, pathways and driveway.

Give the front door a fresh coat of paint, or at least a good clean and make sure that the door furniture is shiny and the bell works! Windows and net curtains should be cleaned.

And finally…choose the right agent

With the help of Ellis and Co Golders Green your home can be beautifully presented and marketed to appeal to the widest selection of buyers, giving you the best opportunity to sell for the highest price.

We are property specialists and our expertise and knowledge is often underestimated and underused. We’d be happy to give you a constructive critique and point out any weak points about your property. It’s all part of the service we offer our sellers to help them achieve a quick and successful sale.


Selling? – Give your House it’s own MOT!

In our September newsletter we feature our top structural pre-sale tips. But why would we be asking you to look at the structure of your home? We all want to ensure that any sale runs as smoothly as possible, delays are the last thing any vendor; buyer and agent would want. Structural delays are caused by failure to produce paperwork or having to renegotiate because work needs undertaking. As it is often said, “to be forewarned is to be forearmed”.

Whilst you are staging the inside of your home, take a break and have a walk round your home to check the structure. So what basic checks can you undertake to do, how can you give your house it’s own MOT?

  1. Check the service record of your boiler, this will need to be up to date prior to your move. Also ensure that you have all the paperwork and licenses available for any work you may have had undertaken.
  2. Check your building from the outside. Clean all your guttering to prevent any possible water damage and also check your drainpipes and drains are in good working order.
  3. How is your roof looking, this is of special concern if you live in an older property. The thought of a new roof can send shivers down the spines of any potential buyers.
  4. Cracks can appear in all ages of homes, most of which are caused by natural movement of the home. What you need to ask yourself is – are there any cracks that may look like they may be of concern? If you can fit a sideways 10 pence piece into a crack, pre-empt any problems in the sales process by getting it checked and have a report that you can show potential buyers.
  5. Greenery adds to the beauty of our homes but it can also raise alarm bells for potential buyers. We have all heard of the horror stories of tree roots destroying the foundations of some properties but remember this is not the case in every home. Be honest if you think that your greenery may be an area of concern for potential buyers and seek expert advise.
  6. At Ellis and Co Golders Green we have known potential buyers to walk round a house with a damp meter, yes really! If you have had damp problems, which have been resolved, inform your agent so they can in turn inform potential buyers. Otherwise undertake a visual check and have a quick feel of your walls, you know your home best and will be able to notice any changes.
  7. Do you know that any electrical work needs to be signed off by a qualified electrician? Don’t leave yourself open to an embarrassing conversation as with all areas of your property’s MOT, have a professional do the work and get your compliance report.

A survey is likely to be undertaken prior to sale that will identify any issues, but you can speed up the process by completing our simple checks and paperwork gathering as suggested above.

As an estate agent we know that having knowledge of these checks is of great benefit when showing potential buyers round your home. Like when you view a new car, you want to know about the MOT, Service History, and Mileage etc. When viewing a home potential buyers want to ensure that the house has been looked after and well maintained. They long to buy a property that not only superficially looks like it has been loved but has all the ‘records’ to prove it has been.

At Ellis and Co Golders Green our home consultation service will not only list your home but also advise you on home staging and conducting your property’s MOT. Call us today on 020 8455 1014.



Don’t Forget to Accessorise your Garden

We love to buy accessories for our home, beautiful cushions, stylish ornaments, striking pieces of art.  But when it comes to our gardens we are very much reserved.  Now we are not talking about bringing gnomes back into fashion, but thinking about key accessories that will transform your garden into an elegant space.

When selling your home how your outside space looks is just as important as the inside.  How your garden is presented can make or break a sale.  We have found a collection of beautiful accessories to help turn your garden from an ‘ok’ to a ‘wow’. Planters and vases come in all materials, shapes and sizes and are an easy and perfect way to add a touch of glamour.  Using up-cycled and recycled products is on trend at the moment, and we have found something very clever.  This recycled corrugated vase and bowl has a water resistant coating to protect the unique card finish, with a glass inner this vase is very special and makes a real feature.

Recycled Eco Corrugated Vase & Bowl, Doris & Boris
Recycled Eco Corrugated Vase & Bowl, Doris & Boris

These traditional galvanised zinc florist vases add a touch of vintage.  Group together in a trio for maximum effect.

Zinc Florist's Vase, Lovestruck Interiors
Zinc Florist’s Vase, Lovestruck Interiors

Displaying art within our home is nothing new, but how about in your garden.  Just as a work of art can transform a room, the same can be said for a wall or a fence.  Outdoor canvas’s are made from completely weatherproof materials to decorate your outdoor space all year round.

Ruby Astrantia Outdoor Art Canvas, Insideout Garden Art
Ruby Astrantia Outdoor Art Canvas, Insideout Garden Art

These beautiful copper garden sculptures will add some sparkle to your garden.  They come in a variety of jewel colours designed to add colour to your garden border.  The copper interior glows beautifully at night when used with a tealight, what a perfect look for a twilight viewing.

Three Coloured Copper Tulip Garden Sculptures, Not on the High Street
Three Coloured Copper Tulip Garden Sculptures, Not on the High Street

When you have a viewing you need to create an atmosphere for potential buyers to fall in love with.  Hurricane lanterns are perfect for summer bbqs and alfresco dining.

St Ives Hurricane Garden Lantern, Not on the High Street
St Ives Hurricane Garden Lantern, Not on the High Street

If you are looking for something fun and quirky then look no further than this Garden Hose Pipe and Reindeer Wall mount.  Have you ever thought of a garden hose pipe as being sexy and glamorous? Practical, sure. Easy to use, absolutely. Glamorous, not so much… until now. The designs are inspired by the iconic bags of Hermés, Chanel and Mulberry.

Garden Glory, Doris and Boris
Garden Glory, Doris and Boris

Putting your house on the market? Don’t Forget to Accessorise your Garden.

Contact Ellis and Co Golders Green today to discover the Estate Agent who believes it’s not only about the house, but the person.


10 Finishing Touches for Home Staging Success.

Home staging is all about creating a lifestyle for potential buyers to fall in love with.  It’s about enhancing your homes best features and creating a home that they can see themselves living in.

Our 10 finishing touches are for that all important viewing to ensure you give your home the best possible chance of success.

1. Flowers

Placing fresh flowers in your key rooms, adds beautiful natural aromas, they also look good too.


You don’t have to spend a fortune, seasonal flowers or even use flowers from your garden.


2. Lemons and Limes

Citrus fruits always make a home feel clean and fresh.  Use lemons and limes in your kitchen either in a glass bowl or vase for a perfect touch.


3. Setting the table

Set your dining room table, and if it’s lovely weather, your garden furniture.  You are not looking for a completed table but a couple of place settings and e.g. cake stand or salad bowl.

Sainsbury's Home
Sainsbury’s Home

4. Shelves

You want your shelves to consist of a small mixture of items such as photos, books, accessories, and maybe even a plant or two.  These images will give you a few ideas.


5. Coffee Table

A coffee table should be simply and elegantly staged with a few simple accessories.


If you only have a side table, place a couple of hard back books neatly in size order for an elegant look.  If possible use coffee table books.


6. Toiletries

Hide, Hide, Hide except for any of your high end products then stage a couple accordingly.


7. Smells

Try and keep the smells in your home natural and not use any overpowering air fresheners.  It is true that fresh coffee and baking are really attractive to a home-buyer; maybe even leave them a cake or two to sample.


8. Cushions

Cushions can really bring a piece of furniture alive; make sure they are placed square on and not at an angle.  Again you do not have to spend a fortune there are some fantastic cushions available on our high streets.

Matalan (Source)
Matalan (Source, Source)

9. Light

Make sure all your curtains and blinds are open as you want to ensure that as much natural light as possible is streaming into your home.


10. Kerb

Let the start of your home be the signature for what is to come.  Remember you want to give your home the best first impression to potential buyers.  Add a hanging basket or tubs with fresh flowers if your budget allows use two Bay or Olive trees at either side of your front door.


For more ideas for Selling Success contact James Ryan on 0208 457 5590

For more Home Staging Ideas check out our Pinterest Board

Selling? Is your home ‘Dressed to Impress’?

January has brought to Ellis and Co – buyers.

Up and down the UK the market is moving, people are ditching their Christmas trees for ‘For Sale’ signs and buyers are out in force.  There is a confidence in the market that is growing and the need for properties, increasing.

It has been an exciting start to January.  We finished the year on a high after our amazing Gold Award winning achievements at The Times Estate Agency Awards, but this was just the start.  This award has made us more determined to exceed your expectations.  We have had an increasing number of quality buyers through our doors, far more than this time last year.

All predictions for 2014 show that property prices will increase during this year.  The Telegraph states “The Office for Budget Responsibility, the Treasury forecaster, predicted a rise of 5.2pc in 2014.”

We are ready for a very busy start to the year; no floods or polar vortex will stop us bringing buyers and vendors together.

How to get your home ready for sale.

You have all heard the advice, de-clutter, de-personalise, de-colour, but can you take this too far? How can you sensibly get your home ready for sale?

There is truth to the advice, but take it too far and you will be left with a cold home that feels unloved.


De-Cluttering is essential for putting your house on the market.  We have garages and store cupboards full of “stuff” and gadgets that we may or may not use.  Do you want to take all this with you?  Go through every cupboard and draw, your shed and attic can decide what you really need in your new home.  A great idea is to rent a storage unit for a short time, here you can store all your packed boxes of things you won’t need before your move.


We all have our own tastes and styles as well as personal and sentimental accessories and furniture around the house.  De-personalising does not mean remove everything, but carefully pick the pieces you wish to express your home’s lifestyle.

What do we mean?

Your home maybe perfect for a family, or may be geared to a young professional, does your item depict the homes lifestyle.  A couple of personal photos around the house are fine, but remember you want people to be able to picture themselves in your property and not get distracted.

Living -Trevereux Millgate

Living Room from Contemporary House, Trevereux, Oxted – Millgate Homes


There is a rule of thumb that all rooms should be neutral in colour as to show a blank canvas.  If your home is already this style that is fine, but if you have some colour don’t rush to hide it.  If you visit a show-home, you will see that colour is used on most walls in the form of paints and wallpapers.  But what you also see is that each room’s palette is tasteful and warm.  Be tough on your decorating choices, if you think potential buyers won’t like it, then it’s time to change, otherwise touch up and tidy.


Other key points to remember

  • First Impressions Count – Ensure your home has kerb appeal
  • Tool Box Required – Finish all the odd jobs you have been putting off.
  • ‘What’s in Here?’ – Clean everywhere, we mean everywhere including inside your fridge, buyers naturally open cupboards.
  • Dressed for Success – Ensure each room is dressed for it’s purpose e.g. if it’s a bedroom show it as a bedroom.
  • Create a Show Stopper – Stage your home for sale.  Add flowers, some nice cushions and hide all the lotions.

List your home with Ellis and Co

Yes we are award winning but we also:

  • Look beyond our mailing list and proactively search for qualified buyers
  • Don’t just believe selling your home is a priority, we live and breathe it.
  • Phone, email, tweet …..  There is no reason why you should not be kept up to date.
  • Care.  We don’t just sell houses, we help people live their dreams.