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Avoid these exhausting mistakes when moving home in Tunbridge Wells.

 

There is nothing more exciting – or stressful – than seeing your moving date start to rush towards you.  You have been looking forward to the day you can step foot in your new home, but you also look around you and feel overwhelmed. How will you be ready in time?  It is always advisable to plan ahead and we have some great tips that will make moving home in Tunbridge Wells less stressful by helping you to avoid some common and exhausting mistakes.

 

Don’t wait until the last minute

                                             

Have you started to prepare for your move?  It is never too soon to get started – there are things you can do even before you place your home on the market.  If you do a little here and there, the whole process won’t feel so insurmountable and, as your moving date approaches, you will feel a lot calmer. No matter where you are in the sales process one thing you can do now is start organising your move by decluttering.

 

Start decluttering now

 

Whether your home is yet to be placed on the market or you are in the midst of the sales process, it is never too early to start decluttering. We all accumulate a wealth of stuff over the years, from things that have moved into the attic never to be seen again, to old purses with forgotten cash, and do we mention those clothes that you’ll never wear again?  Do you really want every tiny thing to find its way to your new home, only to be stuffed away again? Starting this process early can give you the opportunity to sell, re-home or recycle any unwanted items, potentially creating more cash to help with your move!

 

As Marie Kondo would say, “The best way to decide what to keep and what to throw away, is to take each item in one’s hand and ask “Does this item spark joy?”, if it does, you keep it, if it does not, you dispose, donate or sell the item!”

 

This is a job you can do little by little; you may have a spare 10 minutes to sort out a drawer, or an afternoon to organise a bedroom. Sort things into:


* Keeping – will need before we move
* Keeping – but can pack it now ready for our move
* Donate
* Sell
* Bin

 

When you start to put things back, you will have less to do, which will help should you be looking to stage your home for sale. You will have some boxes already packed for your move, which means less to pack when the time comes.  Make sure you label your boxes clearly, as this will make things a lot easier when you’re unpacking at the other end.

 

Forgetting to measure

You are no doubt taking a lot, if not all of your existing furniture, from your current home to your new one, but have you checked that it will all actually fit?  It’s funny how our minds can play tricks on us and resize spaces or furniture when the reality can be a little bit different. If you haven’t already done so, organise a time to view your new home again but this time with a tape measure.  This way, you will know for sure what furniture you can take with you, and what pieces you may have to get rid of before your move.  This is far less stressful than arriving with a van full of your belongings and realising that the vision you had in your head cannot be achieved and then being left with things that won’t fit whilst you’re trying to make your new house feel like home.

 

 

Not organising your change of address

In the UK, we are lucky that Royal Mail can redirect post for a set amount of time, thus giving you some breathing space to check that you have changed your address on everything.  As great as this is, it is still advantageous to plan your change of address in advance, even if companies won’t actually let you do it until after your move.

Start by making a list, from banks and subscriptions to the electoral roll. When you have a list to work through, it can make the process a lot easier and less time consuming. Perhaps adding reminders to your phone calendar to prompt the address change at the time you move; once you’re in your new home, it can easily slip your mind. It is worth starting your list sooner rather than later as some organisations may only communicate with you a couple of times a year, whereas you may hear from others monthly. 

Doing everything yourself

 

The idea of doing the whole move yourself can be attractive, especially if you’re only moving a short distance, but there is a lot more work than you could imagine.  Yes, moving your possessions yourself could save you money compared to hiring a professional removal company, but it isn’t an easy job.  Friends may offer to help you with your furniture, but bear in mind life happens and you could get let down at the last minute.

 

 

Moving furniture isn’t easy, and you will be moving a lot of it, plus boxes and general ‘stuff’ throughout the day. As the day moves on and you begin to tire, you will be more susceptible to injuries, or even an accident where something gets broken. There is knack to packing a van, knowing what to place where and how to make the best use of the space to protect belongings and ensure nothing is damaged in transit. A removal company will have the right equipment to protect any expensive furnishings and will make sure everything is packed correctly.

 

There are a wealth of removal companies in Tunbridge Wells and surrounding areas including Crowborough, Tonbridge and Maidstone our past clients can share their thoughts and ask on their local Facebook pages for recommendations.  It is worth investigating as this is one easy way of eliminating a physically and mentally exhausting moving mistake. You’d be surprised how removal companies do the job so well, without even breaking a sweat, making for a more special and less stressful moving day.

 

Not preparing to move with kids and pets

 

We know that something as exciting as moving house can be extremely exciting, and you want to share that excitement with your children and/or fur babies however, moving day will be stressful enough without the added worry of what they are up to and if they are safe.  It will be difficult to keep them occupied whilst your attention is elsewhere. Can your pets be cared for at a pet day care facility, and your children left with a friend of relative? They can have a day of fun and you can focus on your move. 

 

 

A smoother move

At KMJ Property we want to ensure your move to your new home isn’t exhausting and stressful, but smooth and enjoyable.  If you’re looking to move, we can make sure you have a wonderful experience from start to finish. Call our team today on 01892 515188

What to keep and ditch when selling your home

We know that when you decide to put your property on the market the process can feel overwhelming – especially as it can be full of uncertainty. Where do you start?  What do you need to do to your home to make sure it doesn’t linger on the market?  Take this as your quick guide to those simple décor touches that can highlight and hide, and will help to get your home sold.  They will make your house glow and appeal to buyers in the hope that it will be snapped up quickly. 

What should you keep and ditch when selling your home?

Keep – Fresh flowers

There is nothing like fresh flowers to make a space feel warm and inviting, it gives the buyer the sense that you care about your home and how it is presented.  Think about adding flowers to key spaces such as your dining table, maybe the kitchen island, the living room. You could even think about artificial or dried flowers, succulents or orchids to supplement your displays – a bunch of lavender on a pillow or in the bedroom is always a lovely touch.

Keep – Mirrors

Any room can benefit from a mirror. They brighten the space and can make it appear larger, which is amazing if you live in a smaller home.  It’s not only hanging mirrors, think about adding some mirrored finishes – perhaps a vase, tiles, or even the odd piece of furniture, as when strategically placed they can easily enhance a room.

It is also worth thinking about replacing works of art with mirrors, as we all have our own tastes and should they not align with a potential buyer’s preferences it could subconsciously turn them off your home.  Use a large wall mirror in a small room, as this adds dimension to the space making it more appealing, and place mirrors near windows so the space can benefit from the reflected light in the room.

Keep – New towels

Ditch – Used towels

Yes, towels. This may seem a strange conversation to have, just like which way the toilet roll should be placed (although the answer is always over, in case you’re curious).  Bathrooms are one of those rooms that can win buyers over; they want to see a haven, a spa-like experience that makes them want to relax and ease their stresses away.  And nothing screams luxury quite like fluffy new towels, which is why we recommend you purchase a couple that can be used for photographs and viewings.

These sacred towels are there for display purposes only – that is, until you move, then you can get the full experience of wrapping yourself in these glorious bundles of softness.

Keep – good lighting

One quick way your home can turn off buyers is to have no light shining in – there is nothing attractive about a dark and moody home.  We would always recommend the rule of three when it comes to lighting your home – by this, we mean having three sources of artificial light per room, such as two table lamps and one floor lamp. Make sure you use clear, incandescent lightbulbs.

In addition, don’t forget to emphasise your home’s natural light – open all your curtains and blinds and cut back any trees that could be stopping light from flooding a room. A light-filled home is welcoming and will sell more quickly.

Keep – Blue

It has been scientifically proven that the colour blue can make people feel more relaxed and calm. That doesn’t mean that you need to grab a paint brush and start adding blue to your walls, as this could see buyers running. You can add blue in a more subtle way, such as adding a blue or teal cushion, a throw or even a planters in your garden.

Ditch – Politics, allegiances

We all have our opinions, sports teams we support, and groups we may be aligned to. This is great, but not everyone will have the same viewpoint.  You may be lucky and only have viewings from similar minded people, but what is more likely is that someone will view your home and instead of focusing on what your property has to offer, they will take away that you have different opinions.  Where possible, neutralise your home so it can appeal to the widest number of buyers possible.

Ditch – Collections

You may be passionate about vinyl, be Star Wars obsessed or a Lego nut!  But when it comes to preparing your home for sale, find a way to hide your collections or tone them down a lot.  A lot of ‘things’ will not only make your home feel cluttered, making buyers think it lacks storage or is smaller than it actually is, but it will also make it hard for a buyer to envision themselves living there. This is never a good thing when you want to sell.

Ditch – The personal

We all have family photos and portraits displayed in our homes, and they are doing no harm – right?  Actually, they can hinder your sale, as again buyers will only see you in this house and could struggle to picture themselves living there.  It isn’t just photos but also medals, fridge magnets, costumes – anything that reveals too much about your personality or lifestyle. You should make space for buyers to imagine your house as their home.

Keep – Our number 01892 515188

If you’re looking to not just list but sell your home in Tunbridge Wells come and speak to an agent who understands that the smallest of details can make the biggest difference.  Our team at KMJ Property are looking forward to your call.

The to-do’s professionals swear by before listing your home

We can certainly see the impact the Stamp Duty holiday extension is having on the property market, as we have been kept very busy this week.  Even so, selling your home isn’t as easy as placing a For Sale sign outside. At KMJ Property we focus on every element of the sale, so your experience is one that results in the best possible sales price whilst taking away the stress associated with moving home.  But to achieve that best possible price, you need to put in the work. One thing we are seeing quite often is homeowners who don’t truly understand how to prepare their home for sale.  Professional home stagers have a wealth of advice, but we have compiled the top five tips they swear by before listing your home.

Decluttering

You may have heard us speak about this before, but we can’t tell you how important it is.  What buyer wants to view a disorganised home?  Failing to do this simple task is something we see often; we know it can seem daunting, but by taking a room at a time you will soon have it in hand.  Make sure that you keep surfaces clear of clutter – that means your kitchen worktops, bathroom vanity units and windowsills. Just because you have a surface, doesn’t mean it needs to be filled with things.

Remember to clear out cupboards, garages and other storage areas. If a buyer sees that there isn’t enough room for your belongings, they may feel that storage will be lacking for them too.  Decluttering isn’t just about organising, it also opens up spaces and makes them feel more spacious, which is always a plus point for potential buyers.

Refreshing décor

Every buyer will want to put their own stamp on the home they buy, but that doesn’t mean they will want to fully redecorate the minute they get their keys.  It is natural for a home’s décor to become tired over time and it’s amazing the transformation a quick coat of paint can achieve.  Yes, neutral tones are generally preferred but that doesn’t mean that this is always true.  You may have used bold and elegant shades throughout your house that create a striking and stylish interior.  There is no doubt that this may grab the attention of buyers with similar tastes, but just bear in mind it may not be everyone’s cup of tea. 

That being said, if you have a more dated décor scheme or one which only its owner could love, then failing to make a few changes can turn buyers off.  Grabbing a buyer’s attention as quickly as possible is essential, so it’s important to do everything you can to stop them quickly moving onto the next property and leaving yours behind.

Don’t neglect the small stuff

You may have some little niggles in your home which you haven’t got round to addressing; it could be changing the light bulb in the entrance hall, or tightening that loose handle on the bathroom door.  You would be surprised the negative effect that neglecting to take care of the small stuff can have on a buyer’s impression of your property.  They may start to wonder what else is broken in your home – are there problems they can’t see? Don’t leave them with any doubt, get those jobs done so that buyers can see the care and attention you have given the property whilst living there.

Staging your home

Staging a home is an art. It doesn’t mean stripping a room bear and leaving a stark, clinical look, but you also don’t want it to look like life has just exploded in each room.  You want a careful balance of cleanliness and order, with those careful touches that make it feel like a home.  Remember to take away personal photos, as these remind a buyer that this is your property, when they should be thinking about how they might live there. Staging is all about those finishing touches, a vase of fresh flowers placed on the dining table; a small tray ready for a cream tea in the garden; a throw and a book carefully placed on the bedroom chair…

Home magazines are the perfect inspiration, or you could look at photographs from show homes – these professionals know how to create a lifestyle that buyers will want to buy into.

Now it’s time to list

Yes, all this work should be undertaken before you invite an estate agent in to value your home, why?  Because how your home is presented could affect your home’s valuation.  This is again where many sellers go wrong, but if you have this all done before your home is listed, your marketing photographs and videos will show your home at its best and grab the attention of all those eager and ready-to-move buyers.

If you are unsure how to prepare your home for sale, please contact a member of our team and we would be happy to give you our honest advice on what will have the biggest impact for your home.  Call our team today on 01892 515188.

 

Why now is a great time to sell your home in Tunbridge Wells

There are rumblings in the press that the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, will extend the Stamp Duty holiday deadline until the end of June.  This is fantastic news for all those people who are in the process of completing and have been worried if it will happen in time.  The Stamp Duty holiday certainly fired up the property market last year across the UK, and we saw many people moving as a result.  Regardless of whether these rumblings become reality or not, we still believe that now is a great time to sell your home in Tunbridge Wells

Are there buyers?

Even during a lockdown, the desire to move never fades, and that is proven when you take a look at February’s House Price Index from Rightmove.  The index shows that visits to the property website are up 45% on last year, with those eager house-hunters increasing the number of enquiries by 18%.  At KMJ Property we have really felt this buyer increase; it seems that the prospect of a restriction-free (ish) summer has got people looking to the future, and for many this includes a new home.

What can they buy?

As fantastic as this surge of buyers is, there is a problem: demand is outstripped by supply, there are just not enough houses on the market for them to buy.  This is not an issue limited to Tunbridge Wells; Rightmove figures also show that seller numbers are down by 21% from last year.  In a sellers’ market such as this, it means that any home on the market will receive lots of attention, especially if it is priced correctly and marketed properly.

Where is the supply?

One of the reasons suggested for the lack of available properties is that people have resisted the urge to place their home on the market due to the pressures of home schooling.  If you, like us, are trying to keep your sanity whilst googling ‘how to…’ to help your child with their schoolwork, you are not alone.  Whoever said moving home is one of the most stressful things you can do in life, hasn’t experienced a lockdown with home schooling alongside home working – thank goodness it comes to an end on 8 March.

It is completely understandable that the idea of throwing a move into the mix has been one stress too many for lots of people.  When the little ones are back in school, we believe that the number of homes coming on to the market will start to increase and, as such, start to meet that demand from buyers.  But remember, the more houses there are for sale, the more competition there is to catch potential buyers’ attention.

What do they need?

Today’s buyers know exactly what they want. This last year has given everyone a different perspective on personal needs, and this might now include space to work from home.  Only this week, HSBC have announced that they are letting go of almost half of their global office footprint in favour of a “very different style of working post-Covid”.  They are not the only corporate name to be making this move, and it is believed that the post-Covid working environment will be very different to what it was just over 12 months ago.

This huge change in the global working culture means that now more than ever before, a space to work is essential, whether that’s from home or an office hub.  We have seen over the past year many home offices being built in gardens and in converted garages.  It is therefore worth thinking about presenting an ‘office space’ in your property when you decide to place your home on the market.

A fresh start

There is no doubt that the idea of a post-Covid fresh start is extremely alluring, the idea that when June arrives, you will be able to enjoy your freedom in a wonderful new home.  We know that many of you in Tunbridge Wells have invested in your properties over the last year – the queues at the DIY stores and the difficulty of finding certain shades of paint and materials was testament to this.  All your hard work and creativity may give you some good news when we come to value your property.

Why now?

Why wouldn’t you want to sell your home when there is an abundance of buyers and a lack of properties available?  We can start to do the work now so that when the schools are back and things are a little calmer, we can have your home marketed as quickly as possible.  If you’re thinking of moving, now is a great time to sell your home in Tunbridge Wells.

Give our team a call today on 01892 515188

Six clear signs that the asking price for your Tunbridge Wells home is too high

To say it has been a challenging twelve months would be an understatement, and there have been highs and lows when it comes to the property market in Tunbridge Wells.  Regardless of the market conditions, it is essential that when selling your home you always get the price right.  In fact, deciding to set the price of your property too high could have several rather unpleasant side effects, and could even be the reason why your house doesn’t sell.  So, before you fall into any traps, here are six clear signs that the asking price for your home is too high.

  1. Because you believe it’s worth it

A mistake many people make when selling their home is deciding on the asking price themselves.  You believe it is worth a certain figure, due to the amount you paid for it and the hard work you’ve undertaken adding upgrades, high-quality fixtures and fittings, and you may even have extended it.  It can be really tempting to ignore the recommendations made to you by estate agents because this is your home, and you know what it is worth.

Sadly, the property market doesn’t work like that – we wish it did.  There is often a ceiling price for what a house can realistically achieve in a particular area, and current market conditions mean the value of your home can fluctuate. At KMJ Property we want you to achieve the highest possible sales price, and our valuation figure is based on research, expertise, and knowing in the current market what buyers will be willing to pay.  We negotiate strongly, ensuring that we have done everything we can to get your house sold for the highest possible price.

  1. Swayed by the big bucks

At KMJ Property we believe in an honest and straightforward approach. We know our expertise and the experience of our clients, together with our local knowledge, is why we are considered one of the best estate agents in Tunbridge Wells. The valuation we give of your home is not inflated in any way to win your business. As difficult as it may be when deciding on an estate agent to sell your home, don’t be swayed by the big bucks, take all aspects of their service and their experience of selling local properties into account.

  1. The price is not right

Another trap you can fall into if you’re swayed by the big bucks is the scorn of the savvy buyer.  Buyers today know their way around the property portals; they know what reports to review and how to look up Land Registry details, and they know an overpriced house when they see one.  No matter how stunning your home looks in the marketing materials, if a buyer’s research tells them it is overpriced they will simply stay away.  Do you want to take that gamble?

  1. Viewings are down

Your house is on the market, you have seen it on the property portals and you wait with anticipation for the virtual and physical views to start racking up.  The minutes pass, the hours tick by, and the days turn into weeks, and that initial excitement begins to turn into dread.  The viewings you have had have started to dry up, and you are wondering what you can do to turn things around.  You may wish to lower the asking price now, but sadly the damage has already been done.

  1. Less than expected

Lowering your asking price may attract buyers, but again you’ll be hit with the curse of savvy buyers.  They will know that the asking price has been lowered and, as such, will tend not to make a competitive offer.  Buyers will be expecting to negotiate to get a good deal, and if you are receiving offers that are significantly lower than expected, this is certainly a sign that your home is overpriced.

  1. You’ve been left on the shelf

Selling your home can take time, but the longer it sits on the market the less attractive it becomes.  The optimum time for selling your home is when it is first listed, therefore you need to have everything correct from the start.  If after six weeks things have become stale, it is very difficult to reinvigorate the same momentum. None of us at KMJ Property want your house gathering dust, which is why we never want to see it left on the shelf.

When placing your home on the market in Tunbridge Wells it is essential that you get the price correct from the start, so you don’t fall into any of these traps.  If you want your home sold and not just listed, then you need to use an estate agent who understands the importance of valuing your home correctly.

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