A decision to sell your property in Autumn can be a smart move. Sam Funnell from Fine & Country Rugby discusses how to maximise sale opportunities at this time of year.

For many buyers, the summer holidays are over and children are back at school, which frees them up to concentrate on the property market.  In addition to marketing the property at the right price there are other ways to maximise your chance of a sale in Autumn.

If this is the first time you’re putting the property on the market, all of the basic preparations need to be undertaken. Focus on decluttering, both inside and outside. Store outdoor summer games and furniture. Be ruthless when it comes to clearing personal items. While you might enjoy having the family photos lined up on the mantelpiece and covering the fridge door, they detract from the sense of space. Buyers need to envision themselves in a property and depersonalising an area makes it easier for them to see how they will make the space their own.

The focus in summer is often on outdoor space, but in Autumn it changes to the indoor area. Don’t neglect the outdoor area, though. The garden still needs to be tidy, with spent flowers removed, roses pruned and autumn leaves cleared. It is still possible to add some colour in garden beds by planting winter pansies. For instant effect and additional colour, position pots of chrysanthemums that are sold in full flower.

The days are getting shorter and duller, so consider how you can lighten and brighten your property. Turning lights on just before a viewing can make a difference. Position lamps to brighten darker corners and open all of the blinds and curtains. Make sure the windows are clean to ensure maximum natural light. If the property needs a fresh coat of paint, use lighter neutrals and add autumn colour and texture to create warmth through accessories, such as cushions, throws and mats.

Having carpets and mats professionally cleaned can make a big impact visually and help the property to smell fresh. As the days cool, we tend to close the windows to keep warm. It’s also a time when we tend to dry washing inside, which creates extra moisture in the air. Before any viewings, open some windows to let fresh air in, especially if the property has been empty. Equally important is making sure the property is warm. Before your home goes on the market, check radiators for leaks and fix any heating problems. Turn heaters on at least half an hour before a viewing to create a warm inviting atmosphere.

Finally, make sure you get prepare your property for market as early as possible; moving at Christmas time is not appealing for most buyers.

For advice on selling or buying property, please contact Fine & Country Rugby on 01788 820062 or visit www.fineandcountry.com