It’s more than 40 years since Jona Lewie first sang ‘You’ll always find me in the kitchen at parties’.
While his chart hit and Top of the Pops performance have long passed into the mists of pop history, the message about the appeal of the kitchen still rings true today.
Often cited as the ‘heart of the home’, the kitchen is time and again the most popular room searched for when prospective buyers and tenants are browsing the web and looking at properties.
Perhaps that’s no surprise. The kitchen is not only the room where we prepare breakfast, lunch and dinner, and snacks and drinks in between, then do the washing up.
It’s also where we gather with fellow occupiers and spend time with visitors, and of course if you have enough space, where we eat and relax as well.
So given its accepted importance to the buying decision of someone viewing the home, what is the best advice to make your kitchen more ‘sellable’?
Here are some essential tips for sellers and landlords:
- It’s all about the look and feel. Think about what it’s actually like to work and cook in the kitchen. That’s what a prospective occupier will be considering. Is it easy to use? Comfortable? Spacious enough?
- If your cabinets are looking a little tired, it’s a safe bet that a visitor will think the same. You can boost the storage, functionality and overall appearance of the kitchen by replacing and updating your cabinets.
- The same goes for work surfaces, counter tops, flooring and appliances. You can create a far better impression if your fridge and cooker look good and complement the rest of the room’s design.
- Consider the colour scheme. A fresh paint job can make a world of difference. Going ‘neutral’ with white or another light colour can be a sensible choice to universalise the look and feel and appeal to more people. Too dark and you make the space feel smaller. Too ‘quirky’ and you can turn some people off.
- When you are hosting a viewing by a potential buyer or tenant, declutter as much as possible. Remove your personal items and photos. That way, it’s easier for your visitor to visualise being there and using it themself rather than you.
- If you have a centre island, make sure it’s the right size for the space. It has to be big enough to use but not too big or it can make the room look cramped.
- Light and bright. The correct choice of lighting is important. A kitchen has to work well in all seasons of the year. You want to do what you can to flood it with natural light. That’s obviously easier on a sunny day or in summer. If it’s winter or dark outside and there are few or no windows, make sure you still use well located lights to show the room at its best. Lights in corners can give the impression of a bigger living space.
- A clever way to make a kitchen appear more homely and appealing on a first viewing is to have baked some bread, a cake or biscuits beforehand. The aroma of fresh baking is very attractive. Similarly, the smell of recently percolated coffee tends to go down well too.
Parties or no parties, following Jona Lewie’s well-observed message you should always try to secure a positive first impression of your kitchen if you want to highlight your property at its best.
If you are looking to sell or rent your home, we can help you through every stage beginning with a detailed expert valuation. For more information on our support for sellers, visit our sell pages. And for landlords, visit …
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