Category: (3)

We show hundreds of people round houses every year. As estate agents, we pick-up on what buyers are focusing on. When it comes to spending your hard-earned cash on home improvements, are you focusing on the right things? It only takes seven seconds for someone to make a first impression, it’s no wonder people take so much notice of the things they see first.

The top five things people notice about your home on arrival are:

1. Front door / porch (30%)
2. Hallway/entry hall/staircase (30%)
3. Driveway / front garden (27%)
4. Overall decor / Interior design (25%)
5. Living room (23%)

Although the entrance to a home is ranked the most noticeable, only 2% of people focus on this area of their own home when they first move in, with the majority confessing they chose to fix up their kitchen, bathroom and bedrooms first.

Looking at the difference between the sexes, 28% of women notice the overall décor of a home compared to just 21% of men, and strangely, women are also quicker to notice the smell of a home compared to men (20% for women vs 13% for men). When it comes to the ages, the under 35’s are quick to notice integrated technology compared to just 2% of over 35’s.

So what can you do to make the best impression, help sell your home and possible even add value? Our top tips are:

1. Front Door

It’s no surprise that the front door is the first thing that people see about your home, and it is now often seen as a reflection of your taste and lifestyle. Entrances should feel protective yet warm and welcoming. Achieving this with a bog-standard front door can be difficult. Consider what impression you want to give to your buyers.

2. Hallway

Homeowners themselves don’t spend too much of their time in the hallway or stairwell, so it’s often forgotten, but it’s arguably the most important part of the home. Sitting in the centre and leading off into other rooms, the hallway can be a busy area, and is the second (30%) most noticeable thing about your home, so it’s important to keep it looking its best.

There are multiple ways of dressing up a hallway with a quick splash of fresh paint or a new runner on the stairs. For wooden stairs, painting the vertical side of each step can liven things up, and add heaps of personality. Laying down new floor tiles will dramatically change the look and feel of a hallway, and adding typical hallway furniture will make any hallway more inviting. A cheaper alternative to add personality is with a picture gallery leading upstairs, giving guests an insight into what is important to you.

However, it’s also important to remember that the hallway is a very functional space, so don’t do anything that could sabotage that, such as laying a luxurious carpet that is bound to get ruined by dirty shoes.

3. Front garden

It is possible to achieve a low maintenance garden which has maximum visual impact; bay trees on the patio will look smart, or even invest in a few shrubs or colourful pots to keep your garden looking healthy and green during the winter months. Ten years ago, astroturf was hardly ever seen and now it’s the norm in many properties.

Highlight your front garden’s best features using lighting. The great thing about garden lighting is that you can focus attention away from your garden’s more unsightly aspects, such as your bin shed, and toward your front door- as if to say, ‘come on in!’.

4. Overall decor

With so many different rooms to change, changing the overall decor of a home is harder than it sounds. If you don’t have an eye for interior design or have an unusual style, sticking to a soft colour scheme and adding your personality in with your own furniture and homeware is always a safe bet.

A simple way to freshen up your new home in the early days of living there is to add artwork. Framed in coordinating frames, artwork will add fluidity between the rooms and instantly add personality, making the space feel like your own until you have the time and the budget to tackle larger projects.

5. Living room

Living rooms are all about a welcoming atmosphere. Building charm and character aren’t always the easiest, especially in newer homes, but there are some ways to get around this. Architectural lighting work particularly well, something that stands out and creates a focal point within the room. Feature wallpaper in neutral colours can also be used to create strong accent walls, and give character to space.”

For more bespoke advice or to arrange a FREE Market Appraisal or Consultation, please feel free to contact us on 01522 716204 or 01476 515329

We’re hiring!

Due to a fast growing and expanding business, Mount & Minster are now looking to recruit a secretary or admin assistant to work as part of an established team in the busy Grantham branch.

This exciting role involves:

  • Assisting and reporting to the Managing Partner
  • Working predominantly in the residential department with some of the finest and highest value properties
  • Registering applicants for sales and lettings properties
  • Booking appointments
  • Attending meetings and taking comprehensive notes
  • Carrying out accompanied viewings of prominent private homes
  • Preparing and sending legal documents
  • Working closely with the team in other offices and departments
  • Being part of an enthusiastic and driven team, working towards common goals

The Person

Ideally you will already have some experience of working in property, however this is not essential and we are keen to hear from applicants with a strong, administration, customer service or sales background.

Possessing a clear passion for property and a good knowledge of the local area, you must have:

  • Excellent communication skills, both written and verbal
  • Good IT skills, including knowledge of Microsoft Word and Excel
  • A keen eye for detail
  • Confident and able to work alone, as well as be part of a team
  • A willingness to go the extra mile
  • A full UK driving license

The Reward

Salary dependent on experience + discretionary bonus
Training and support
Excellent career prospects

This is a fantastic opportunity for the right individual to join an established firm with an enviable reputation. Call 01476 515329 or email your CV to ralph@mountandminster.co.uk

Lots of people wrongly assume that selling a house is easy and doesn’t take any preparation. The reality is, selling a home involves specialist skills and knowledge from the best estate agents, however there are some things you can do to help to ensure an easy and stress-free experience, as well as getting a better price.

  1. Pricing your home right from the beginning is imperative. Price your house too high and you’ll miss out on offers and reduce your pool of prospective purchasers. If your property has been on the market for some time, people will begin to wonder whether there is something wrong with it. Don’t let it go stale. Listen to your agent and remember that the highest valuation may not prove to be the best advice.
  2. It’s important to enhance your kerb appeal. First impressions matter and you only get one chance. Consider what the outside of your property looks like to people driving up for the first time. Your property should at least look better than your neighbour’s. Revamp your front door, add a security light, plant some flowers and declutter any exterior porches. Remember, people love a healthy lawn.
  3. Exaggerations will only disappoint in the future. Take what you have and accept it. Don’t try to force the value. If you have a tiny spare room that barely fits a single bed, don’t describe it as an extra bedroom but instead be honest and explain that it would be better renovated into a walk-in wardrobe or storage room.
  4. Shop around for the best estate agent. It’s one of the biggest decisions of your life so make sure you choose the best company to do it. A lot of estate agency business is done through referral and word of mouth so ask around to find a recommended choice. The best is rarely the cheapest so stay clear of low-value ‘pay-anyway’ call-center agents. Going away with more money in your pocket is more important than low fees. Cheap is not best value.
  5. Depersonalise and declutter. Whilst a house should feel homely, you need to allow the potential buyer to imagine thier own family in the property. Remove all items that largely relate to your political and religious beliefs and get rid of any trace of pets. You may love your cat but some buyers won’t.
  6. The kitchen and bathroom always come first. Typically, these are the rooms that buyers want to see the most so they shouldn’t look as if they need a huge renovation. If you do decide to update these before selling then remember that neutral colours always work best and always renovate up to the worth of your home. There is no point installing a bathroom for £30,000 if your house is only worth £200,000.
  7. There isn’t a best time to sell your home. Rumours have it that spring is the best time to sell but houses do sell in winter, autumn and summer too. February and March particularly stand out as exceptional times of year to put your house on the market as there’s usually little available to buyers (low supply), therefore giving them fewer options or alternatives other than your property. Prices therefore tend to be higher. Sell when everyone else does and the market will be saturated and you’ll have to be more price sensitive. Sell in March and you’re more likely to achieve a premium on the price.

Selling and buying houses is a very personal journey but with a little research and the right agent, hopefully you’ll be on your way to making that property dream, a reality. If you have any questions, then please get in touch. 01522 716204 (Lincoln) | 01476 515329 (Grantham) | 02078 390888 (London)