Amidst all this doom and gloom, there is one industry that seems to be thriving in many parts of the country: the real estate market.
Average house prices this week hit record highs, according to Rightmove, fueled by a temporary stamp duty vacation and a so-called "race for space" as more of us consider a lifestyle change.
So is it time to make some money? Here's how to get your home ready for sale and even add value.
The right time? Average house prices this week hit record highs, according to Rightmove, fueled by a temporary stamp duty vacation and a so-called "race for space".
MAXIMIZE THE SPACE
Clearing the basement, loft, and garage are obvious chores, but real estate agents say the smartest sellers should go much further.
“This is particularly important in the entrance hall because the first impression counts. So make sure it is as clear as possible.
"All you need is a small amount of furniture. So think about how easily people can walk around the property without being obstructed by protruding objects," says Christopher Burton of Knight Frank (knightfrank.co.uk).
Put away kitchen pots and pans to clean the countertops. Put shampoo bottles in cupboards; Drawers under the bed make the bedroom look much tidier. and when you start painting keep in mind that dark colors make rooms look smaller.
Gardens have never been so popular. So if you are lucky enough to have outdoor space make sure it is optimal.
Prioritize the front yard, if you have one, to impress buyers who drive by before deciding to visit in person.
Remove weeds, expose fresh plant pots and hanging baskets, and clear a path to a newly painted front door in shiny brass or silver.
Jetwash paths, pavement and steps, and conservatory windows on the back. The decking, in particular, may have become slippery and need to be updated.
Many sales were thwarted by the condition of the neighbor's lawn next door. If you can't mow it, why not offer to do it for you? Selling your property faster can be helpful.
Ripped into odd jobs
While major gas or electricity jobs require skilled handyman, comparison website HaMuch.com admits that there are many smaller home improvement jobs that many people could do to make the home more attractive and also save money.
This includes painting and wallpapering rooms, replacing old or cracked tiles, mending dodgy floorboards, and even replacing creaky hinges.
Mark Lamb of Victorian Plumbing (victorianplumbing.co.uk) says salespeople shouldn't let themselves be put off by a job like tiling in the bathroom, even if they haven't already: “You don't need experience to do the job. You just need patience.
"The right amount of tile is the key to successful tile. Take the time to measure the bathroom and always order 10 percent more tiles than you need."
If you want to get the most bang for your buck, the general advice is to sell now. However, if you want to wait for things to settle down, it may be worthwhile to redesign certain rooms.
The National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) says the key improvements that add value are kitchen and bathroom renovations. So make them look fresh, modern and hygienic.
"Good lighting and tidy, clean surfaces in neutral colors can quickly create a welcoming and spacious feeling," said Mark Hayward, managing director of NAEA.
Nowadays, having a room or dedicated space that can be made available for work from home would also add to the appeal.
If the house you want to sell is empty, stage it. Design firms like Derby-based Lemon & Lime Interiors (itroneand limeinteriors.co.uk) offer “virtual staging” – advice on what furniture to rent to “dress” your home and impress buyers.
Now there is no more excuse: make sure your home is singing and dancing so you can make money with high prices.
In the market … Home Revamp
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