Selling Guide

Norman Devlin Estate Agents Cookstown

Norman Devlin Estate Agents & Surveyors Gives Advice on Selling Your Beautiful Home!

Selling your home is a major decision in anyone's life so it is important that you get things right from the start.

There are many reasons for selling; it could be upsizing to a larger family home, down-sizing to a smaller property when kids leave home, emigrating or selling an investment property to release capital. Whatever the reason, your aim is to get the best price possible for your property.

Here are a few handy tips, without involving massive expense or effort, to help you sell your property by attracting the maximum amount of interest to get you the highest price possible.

Preparing Your Home For Sale

First Impressions Count - As in all of life, first impressions count. It is no different when selling your house. There are suggestions that potential purchasers form opinions on properties within the first few minutes of viewing them. Therefore it is imperative that the first impression is a positive one. Your Estate Agent can give you some tips about this. A positive first impression can be created by keeping the property clean and tidy, both internally and externally. Even before entering the property or when entering the hallway, a buyer's mind is often made up. It is often said the hallway is the most important room within the house to have prepared for viewers entering your home. Consider personal touches such as the aroma from a vase of fresh flowers on a hall table, this can create a real sense of welcome for viewers immediately they enter your home.

External - It is important to keep the outside of the property well maintained and in good condition. The garden should be kept neat and well tended and the paint work of the property including walls, windows, doors, gates, railings etc all kept maintained, the addition of window boxes and/or hanging baskets is often a nice touch.

Internal - Internally the property should also be kept well maintained, neat and tidy so that the viewer can see the property at its full potential. If necessary, rearrange the rooms or put furniture in storage to create the illusion of more space. Where possible, remove personal items such as photographs or keepsakes as well as de-cluttering your home from newspapers, toys, magazines etc as these can all distract potential purchasers.

Although expensive and not usually necessary, some people go to greater lengths and purchase some new pieces of furniture for the sale, perhaps furniture they wish to have for their new home. We have one client we sold a house for, who, just before the sale, moved in borrowed furniture and ornaments, he also bought some new lamps and other personal touches, the effect was amazing and the end price achieved in a very short time was also amazing!

Think about little luxuries you would love to find in a house you're viewing. Appeal to all five of your viewer's senses. A pot of freshly brewed coffee, the smell of fresh baking or fresh flowers and fruit will immediately grab their attention. It is important to keep your property illuminated and fresh. A light airy property will feel spacious and bright. Help the viewer imagine living there, make your property really attractive.

One final point and often overlooked, the property should be kept at an ambient temperature, neither too hot nor cold.

DIY - It is a good idea to complete any small repair jobs around the house such as; replacing broken or chipped tiles, patch holes in walls, fix any plumbing issues, fix doors that don't close properly, consider re-painting walls in bright neutral colours to freshen up, replace light bulbs, hang up fresh towels etc. All of these minor jobs will ensure that the buyer leaves with a positive and lasting impression.

Pets - While pets may be your pride and joy, to others they are often very off-putting and should be kept out of the property during viewings. Remember to deal with pet smells sensitively.

Choose an Estate Agent

You want an Estate Agent who will make the selling process as stress free as possible for you. Their job is to value your property correctly, find the right buyer and get the maximum price possible. You need to choose your agent carefully. Pick someone who is very familiar with the area. Ask friends, relatives or neighbours for personal recommendations about agents in your area. Find someone who is well established and above all, trustworthy. Do not fall into the trap of choosing your agent on fees alone; choose an agent who will work hard on your behalf to achieve the best price possible in the shortest possible time. Always look for marks of professionalism - for example, we are members of the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) and our surveyors are members of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

The good news is, NORMAN DEVLIN ESTATE AGENTS AND SURVEYORS will be able to fulfil ALL these requirements, ensuring the successful sale of your property! Choose wisely and you'll never regret using our services. We will need to take particulars of your property together with internal and external photographs in order to prepare a brochure for your approval.

We will then send out our Terms and Conditions giving you clear information regarding fees etc as this is a legal requirement. You must also present us with identification under the Money Laundering Regulations. We will also advise the legal requirement to have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) carried out prior to commencing marketing your property.

Price Correctly

It is important to be realistic about the value of your property. Pricing too high or too low both may make your property undesirable. If you list too high you may scare off potential purchasers. When you get a property valuation, we will assess your home and advise you of its achievable market value. Once you approve the brochure, it will be placed in our window and on our website, a "For Sale" board will be erected and a mail shot done by us matching potential buyer's with your home.

We will ensure it is advertised properly in order to obtain the maximum amount of interest. The main advertising tools are the 'For Sale' board, our website, PropertyPal and /or Propertynews and also on social media e.g. our Facebook page. We will make sure the sale board is clear, eye catching and visible to passersby from all directions. The 'For Sale' board not only alerts people to the fact that your property is for sale but it also makes it easier to find. We will advise you about advertising on various websites as the increased use of the internet will increase the publicity of your property, and we will arrange this for you. Local press advertising is also a good option and can be arranged for you if you wish.


In most cases, we will carry out the viewings on your behalf. Make sure you are flexible with your viewing times, and we will ring and arrange a mutually convenient time to suit all parties involved. You don't want to deter interested parties with inflexible viewing times as it can seem that you are not truly interested in selling your property.

The best option is to give a set of keys to us even if you are still living in the property. That way you can arrange to leave the property prior to the arrival of the viewing party. In our experience the presence of the owners during a viewing is sometimes off-putting to viewers.


We will advise you of any offers received and the conditions attached to the offers e.g. if the bidders have a house to sell or are in a chain, first time buyers, cash offer or subject to mortgage etc. This information will help you make informed decisions. If more than one party makes an offer, a bidding situation is likely to develop and we will continue with that process until bidding has stopped.

We are legally obliged to send out all offers in writing to you - this will ensure you are fully aware of all offers and further help you in your decision making process on selling your home. If an offer is placed on your property it is important to respond quickly so we can let the interested party know where they stand.


Once you are happy with an offer, you can instruct us to accept. We will then complete a sales advice note and send letters to all the involved parties informing them of the sales details. We will in many cases also collect a holding fee from the purchaser at the point of sale agreement; this holding fee (sometimes called a deposit) is fully refundable up until the point of signing the contract. Your appointed solicitor will then draw up the contract.

The buyer's mortgage company will contact us to gain access for their appointed surveyor to inspect and value the property for lending purposes. Once all legal matters have been dealt with, both the buyer and seller will sign the contract. A completion date will be agreed and on or before the date of completion, the balance monies will transfer to your solicitor. Contracts are legally binding so make sure you are 100% ready to sign. When all monies are received and the sale is completed, keys can be released.

Selling Guide Enquiry

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