For homeowners, improvement is an ongoing project. For home sellers, it’s vital for securing a fast sale at the best price. But everyone, whether they’re moving on or staying put, benefits from basic home improvements. None of these cost a fortune; in fact investing in expensive alterations or modernisations is often unnecessary.

Tidy and Declutter

You’d be surprised what a difference a good clean and tidy up can make, giving rooms a fresh energy with no more effort than it takes to pack a box or wield a duster.

Pack away random kitchen appliances you don’t use, leaving surfaces clear as far as possible. Remove personal photos, collections of items, knick-knacks, and tidy the insides of cupboards. Buyers like to peak inside to satisfy themselves about storage, and if you’re not moving it will give you a nice sense of orderly satisfaction too.

Tidy cupboards also have a psychological effect on buyers. They give the impression that the house is easy to care for, with a place for everything. Always bear in mind that buyers are looking for a certain lifestyle from the property they buy, and a calm, orderly, peaceful life is high on the list for most people.

Make a Grand Entrance

Give the door a lick of paint, weed flowerbeds, prune the roses, sweep the drive, arrange colourful planters or hanging baskets to create a welcoming entrance. You could power wash the brickwork if you have areas of moss (which signal a lack of sun to buyers), or just give everything a good rub down. The idea is to make the home appealing from the roadside, as many buyers will do a drive-by before they arrange a viewing. And for those who’re not moving, the improvements will make you feel good every time you arrive home.

Arrange Furniture Like a Pro

Often, less is more. When it comes to furnishing a home, make sure the pieces you choose are of the right scale. Giant corner sofas, for instance, can dominate small rooms, making them seem even smaller. How furniture is arranged is important too. Make sure you don’t accidentally create an obstacle course by blocking the natural route across a room. Things don’t need to be spanking brand new, but they should be neat and damage free. Whilst you’re not selling your furniture, it’s the overall impression that’s important, and you don’t want buyers to go away with the impression that the house was a little careworn.

Clearly Indicate Room Function to Buyers

Confused room usage confounds many home buyers. Spare bedrooms should have beds in them, not office furniture, obvious as it sounds. If you’re using a spare room as a home office, consider your ideal buyer then change to room to suit their needs. Families with children want a bedroom more than an office, but maybe young professionals would like to see how the space could be adapted for home working needs.

Switching how you present a room might mean you need to store some existing furniture and replace it with new. You’ll recoup the initial expense when you achieve a fast sale at a good price.

Tackle Running Repairs

Now’s the time to get on with that list of DIYjobs. Fix loose door handles, replace washers in dripping taps, give the interior paintwork a fresh coat, shampoo the carpets and polish the floors. Buyers love fresh, clean homes where it looks like nothing needs doing immediately. And on the upside, you’ll appreciate the new freshness too.

When it comes to home improvements, people can get carried away and imagine they need to add on a conservatory or refit the kitchen. In truth, making the most of what you already have is often enough.