Lots of viewings but no offers

(43 Posts)
lottielou02 Mon 01-Apr-13 17:15:06


I've had my house on the market since August and have had lots of viewings but no offers as of yet. I dropped the price by £5k at the beginning of the year already to account for the fact I don't have central heating, and am offering to have it fitted depending on offers, but I'm not sure what I should do now. The general comments have been positive, that people like the house but they have found another they prefer. I would really appreciate any comments anyone has...

The link is www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-34862005.html



Get rid of all of the wheelie bins from outside.

Get rid of everything from under the beds and on top of wardrobes. Shows you have no storage.

The white goods in the kitchen are badly placed. It looks like you need to walk round them to get into the next room.

Get rid of the teddies, dolls house etc in the lounge.

Get new photos taken. Looks a nice bright property though.

I don't know your area. How quick are properties going under offer?

TurfInTheBog Mon 01-Apr-13 17:34:28

Can you move the arm chair to under the window, to avoid blocking the front door?

LIZS Mon 01-Apr-13 17:40:00

wow that is cheap. I'd try and have the pictures in a logical order , ie front/lounge/kitchen as if someone were viewing. Do you really walk in onto side of sofa ? It is all very neutral and perhaps lacking a little warmth - splashes of coloured accessories, pictures and plants perhaps. Are the pictures recent or from last summer , may be worth an update to refresh.

lottielou02 Mon 01-Apr-13 17:44:24

Thank you so much for your replies, its great to get other peoples take on it, lots of ideas I've not heard before. I'll definitely try rearranging furniture in the lounge and kitchen, and try and move some of my storage things! Great ideas thank you, and I will try moving the dolls house out the lounge. Hopefully the EA will take new photos then, with the bins out the way.

I don't think things are moving especially fast here, unless they are projects etc. But a lot of others seem quite pricey!

Thank you so much again!

DeafLeopard Mon 01-Apr-13 17:45:40

I agree with Greg, but I would also say it might be overpriced, when you have this in the same street for the same price but with C/H.

I think the furniture is bizarrely arranged, e.g. you open the front door and are faced with the end of the sofa. Could you move it a bit forward, so the back of the sofa forms a kind of corridor and makes the living room seem cosier? It looks empty and soulless in the picture.

Bedrooms - can you turn the beds so the headboards are against the wall rather than one side of the bed? Not great to climb over someone to get in and out of bed.

Front garden - I realise this is your only garden but do you really eat out there? Seems too public and odd, might be more attractive with nice plants.

Bathroom nice - squeeze to get to the sink but too expensive to rearrange.

Kitchen bland again.

Are you living in this house? Lack of warmth I think - blank wall above fireplace, blank walls in kitchen, bedrooms. What about some nice pictures or mirrors that you can take with you? and twigs and pebbly shit

Oblomov Mon 01-Apr-13 17:56:33

The pictures on the website are completely out of order and illogical. Ring your agent and ask them to be re-arranged.
Picture 10, of thew house comes first, surely
Picture 2 and 3, of the kitchen are the same, so silly to have 2. Then go to lounge. (you've got bedroom, lounge, bedroom- crazy) .then bathroom (important to some). then bedrooms.

lottielou02 Mon 01-Apr-13 18:01:13

I hadn't really thought about the order of the pictures - good point. Yes, we had the sofa there to try and help us stop the cat escaping, but will definitely try and move it! And I can try and add a little more colour no problem.

Its difficult with the pricing, the one down the road is a developer who bought it very cheap, and put it on to match my price. I think if I lower the price, he will too.

SilveryMoon Mon 01-Apr-13 18:04:28

When we came to view our current place, it was very bare. It had furniture, but the bare minimum. 1 sofa in a huge living room, a tv and dining table, the master bedroom the double bed and 1 bedside table, the childrens bedroom, just the beds, no toys. There was no clutter, no pictures, nothing that wasn't absolute necessary in each room and made it much easier to picture my things in here.
For that reason, I prefer the pictures of the house that Leopard posted.
Also, I'd like to see a better picture of the outside of your house. Possibly taken from across the street and from a better angle.
Your house is lovely, but I'd try to move out everything that wasn't bare essential to the room.
I know others have said about it looking bland and needs some colour, but for me, I like it bare so i can see how and where I'd add my own stamp iyswim.

I don't know anything about the area, but there are so many houses for sale in a very small area. Both this and this are the same price. The first looks nicer, has CH and a more enclosed garden which looks usable. The second has 3 bedrooms, all on the same floor, a back garden and CH, it might be a bit close to a main road. I think you are lucky to be getting viewings.

Grockle Mon 01-Apr-13 18:16:19

I'm no help at all but I knew exactly where your house was before I saw the address. ExH's grandmother lived just round the corner. I love those houses but I always feel sad that so many are bought by landlords for student accomodation.

I love the table & chairs & the pots outside.

If you compare the rightmove ads for your house and the one refurbished by the developer:

From the search results:

Yours is terraced, theirs is end of terrace.

Yours says "Great dining kitchen for entertaining.."

The other says "William H Brown are delighted to offer for sale this two double bedroom mid terrace property, which has been fully refurbished and is situated in a popular and convenient location, with access to local amenities and commuter transport links. An internal inspection is a must to fully appreciate."

Yours has a picure of the kitchen diner as the cover photo, which is a little underwhelming as it's key selling feature.

Theirs is a photo of the front of the house - I find this more normal, I tend to wonder what is being hidden if it isn't used as the first picture.

On the individual listing yours mentions back to back and over 4 floors. I know this is true for both houses, but the other doesn't mention it. I am not sure if it would be better not to mention it as it may put off viewers, but arguably they would be timewasters if they didn't realise and were put off.

I would remove "ideal starter home" from your listing as it is really up to purchasers what they want it for, you don't need to narrow down the people it is "ideal" for. It would be an ideal buy-to-let, second home or downsizing after the end of a relationship home too.

lottielou02 Mon 01-Apr-13 18:57:59

I think its really hard striking the balance between the blank canvas that some people like, but others don't, and keeping the house looking friendly and homely, and still having everything around to still be living there (the house Leopard posted has no one living there as it is a property developer). And its really interesting seeing how there are contrasting opinions. Thank you again to everyone for their help. I will have to think how to declutter but add some warmer touches at the same time maybe.

Grockle - I know, Im sad to be selling and have considered renting my house out instead. My road seems to have less students over the years and is lovely and quiet so I really like it. Thank you for the positive comments about the garden. I think its nice to make the most of what there is, and like being out there.

lottielou02 Mon 01-Apr-13 19:03:11

Breatheslowly, many thanks for your comments - this is really helpful. Up until now I have just gone with what the EA has said, but will ask them to update the details. Totally agree about the starter home comment and I was gutted when they changed the details so the kitchen line was the only description - it felt like they couldn't be bothered spending the time writing anything. Many thanks!

flow4 Mon 01-Apr-13 20:12:40

Lottie, it looks to me like it might be over-priced, unless property prices in Leeds/Burley are rising, unlike other parts of W. Yorks... Precious sales on your street

I agree with flow4. Did you buy it for £83k in 2011? What have you done to it since? If you have done things to it to to improve it, then it should have a "tastefully redecorated in neutral tones throughout in the last two years by the current owners" or similar. Also I think I would remove the "basement" from the kitchen diner description and possibly include a photo of the kitchen showing the window as it looks quite bright.

The agent is there to work for you. I don't know how long you have been with the agent, but you could consider moving to another agent. Alternatively rewrite the details and instruct the agent to change them. We insisted on being able to veto and reword the details for our last house and it was well worth it.

lottielou02 Mon 01-Apr-13 21:44:05

I bought it off my parents, so bought it very cheap, as it was all I could afford, so it does worry me now when people see this. I have decorated, and fitted the bathroom since.

Yes its lovely and bright in the kitchen, I will get them to remove basement, good plan. I am starting to wonder about changing agents. Talking to other people though and no one seems to have anything positive to say about any of them!

Jaynebxl Tue 02-Apr-13 04:10:33

I'm not sure it is so important to change the photos if you are getting lots of viewings as they clearly aren't putting people off coming. But once people actually get to the house something is putting them off. I would go for a bug declutter personally.

Jaynebxl Tue 02-Apr-13 04:11:32

Ah Yes a bug declutter, and maybe even a big declutter too!

Jaynebxl Tue 02-Apr-13 04:16:36

I just mean get rid of the dolls house and whatever it is by the front door near the sofa so it feels even more spacious. And maybe just go for doing the central heating if you are offering.to do it anyway.

flow4 Tue 02-Apr-13 06:44:26

Yes, I wondered about that too. It has been so cold for so long this winter that people might find the lack of heating really off-putting. Is your house warm or chilly to walk into? I think if it's chilly, you'll lose buyers.

If you can afford to do the heating the you should go for it as you can use it until you sell too. It is a bit of a shame that you didn't buy for more with your parents giving you the difference. However the redeveloped one also looks a bit over priced as the cost of the work done plus a reasonable profit margin wouldn't account for the difference. What % of advertised sales price do things actually sell for and what were you hoping to get?

Badvoc Tue 02-Apr-13 07:54:39

I think you need a new EA!!
And to drop the price.

marriedinwhiteagain Tue 02-Apr-13 08:02:31

Put in central heating and make the sitting room look more homely. In perspective I know that the big 30s semis are struggling to go for more that £150k in Upper Armley and they have nice gardens and garages and are still v close to central Leeds so you might be a teeny bit overpriced.

DizzyHoneyBee Tue 02-Apr-13 08:14:27

Your house looks lovely and well presented.

Two things would put me off coming to view/buying if I did view, the lack of a back garden (an assumption based on the fact that you have a table and chairs at the front) and the door opening straight into the living room.

Practical things you can do -

living room: move the table by the door, put a large mirror on the fireplace, can one of the sofas go under the window and make the room look larger? Looking at the floor plan, can the TV not go in the space next to the wall separating the stairs?

In picture 7, can you temporarily move the boxes under the bed as it makes me think there is not enough storage space.

Alwayscheerful Tue 02-Apr-13 08:35:36

I agree with Dizzy and the other posters have also made some very useful comments. Your Estate Agent has been lazy, if they can't up there game seriously consider installing central heating and moving agents. First impressions are important does it feel cold when you enter the house? It looks cramped round the front door so Important to rearrange the furniture in the sitting room and remove the little table by the front door. Good luck.

ILikeBirds Tue 02-Apr-13 09:02:13

It states they're back to back terraces, none of them have back gardens. I would think people looking in that area are fully aware of what that means and it would put people off viewing, rather than getting views which aren't turned into offers.

yani Tue 02-Apr-13 09:17:08

Could you move sofa by front door to where tv is in window area instead?

You mentioned a cat, do you have a non-cat-loving friend who could honestly say whether or not your flat smells of cat. Smells can be off putting.

I'd ask the ea to come back for better photos, or could you wait for a sunny day & take some yourself?

Good luck smile

ILikeBirds Tue 02-Apr-13 09:39:29

If there are plenty of viewings the problem is not the photos. Something is putting people off at the viewing. I think the central heating situation is a little odd tbh. Either there would be none and the asking price reflected this or it would be installed already. Saying you'd put it in is meaningless to someone who doesn't know you from adam.

BalloonSlayer Tue 02-Apr-13 09:41:48

Lots of people on this thread are saying to change the Rightmove entry, but you say that you have had lots of viewings, so that can't be all that off-putting.

I think the main thing that would put me off (I think it's lovely, by the way) is the bedroom with the pine bed. It just doesn't look big enough to have that double bed in. Is there any way you could change it round just for viewings - move it so that you can have small bedside cupboards on either side. You could make these out of some of the boxes on top of the wardrobe/under the bed with a cloth on top. I would really also strongly recommend getting rid of all the visible stuff under the bed and on top of the wardrobe, you are just advertising a lack of storage.

I was going to suggest swapping round the bedroom with the pine bed and the white bedroom with the single bed then I noticed that that one is a double as well! So again, I'd say can you put the bed so that it looks like two people could share it.

I notice the measurements of the place being much the same as my old house. Except that the pictures make it look really big, hugely bigger than my old house! I expect that is normal with EE pictures these days but it does make me wonder whether people are disappointed when they come in as it looks so much smaller than in the photos.

sweetiepie1979 Tue 02-Apr-13 09:51:47

Hi well done asking and taking advice. It needs colour colour colour. I'd pull the kitchen table out a bit and use some colour in to that corner. A clock , a picture, cushions for seats. The white goods all in a row don't look good I'd get them to retake angle in the kitchen.Evrrythings at the same level in living room you need some height/ balance things out and it's so drab (sorry) get a bright throw for the sofa and cushions pictures on wall. If you can invest in a new tv stand do that one is very 60s looks dory of mdf too. Try and invest in a real wood one. Space for some books or DVDs underneath. Move the dolls house. You need brighter curtains too.Sctually the tv is in the wrong place you could make a nice window seat and book shelf in that corner. Put tv somewhere else? That fire is massively dated too can you afford to change it or get rid its very odd in the middle of the wall. If you wanted to keep it there you could knock through to the original fire place and stick a fake fire in if that's the only heat in that room. Or is it an option to put a real fire in let your visitors know that. You might want to cosier a coffee table in that room too. I'd whoosh the carpet out and put some good rugs down instead.The bedroom that looks like a nursery is a little odd too with salmon walls I'd get that painted and if it's an adults room use bolder colours again pictures/plants. Clear out under beds looks messy. Bathroom needs a plant with a hint of colour don't know about eating area out the front maybe just a wooden bench would be nice and fill with grass rather than stones get some flowers in. Good luck hope you get to sell soon. And hope I haven't offended.

Longdistance Tue 02-Apr-13 09:52:18

Take the teddies off the shelves in the living room, and get some cheap candle pebbly shit to display on it.
I agree with moving the sofa forward.
The fridge and freezer that are next to each other look very odd IMO.
That spare bedroom needs de junking ie, move the boxes, move the position of the bed if you can.
Gonna have another look....

Longdistance Tue 02-Apr-13 09:56:51

Maybe the table and chairs out front look strange. Maybe remove them, as I doesnt look like a private garden, and I wouldn't sit out here for the tea of the neighbours thinking I'm nosey

BalloonSlayer Tue 02-Apr-13 10:46:16

Blimey sweetiepie I know about staging and all that, but should she really:

- buy a new TV stand,
- buy new curtains
- build a window seat
- build a bookcase
- buy a new gas fire or knock through into the original one (actually shock and confused at that)
- buy a new coffee table
- remove carpet and buy rugs
- paint walls
- buy a bench
- turf the front garden


Do people genuinely decide they don't like a house because the "TV stand looks a bit dated" or the coffee table isn't "cosy" enough? Surely even the most naive house-hunter realises that these things are not included in the sale?

I reckon that little lot would set her back about £10,000 - on a house on the market for £110,000!

I have watched plenty of the House Doctor and I do understand about making people be able to imagine themselves in a house, but the whole point is to spend minimally to get the house sold quickly, not to rip the whole thing apart and start spending thousands knocking out fireplaces and building in stuff some imaginary buyer might like, only to have people come in and say, "oh not sure about that window seat, that'll have to come out."

sweetiepie1979 Tue 02-Apr-13 13:09:23

Yes your probably right, sorry OP. can I just say I'm bed bound in pain and totally bored and using mums net as a distraction. I'm sorry I don't really know what I was talking about. I suppose I answered from a if you were going to stay point of view and you wanted to brighten it up a bit. Sorry everybody especially OP.

DeafLeopard Tue 02-Apr-13 14:52:15

Have you asked your EA why people are put off once they have had a viewing.

There is obviously something that they see / hear etc when they get in the house that deters them - if your house is cold then c/h might be the issue. My friend bought electric radiators that are slimline wall mounted and cheap to get round the problem of c/h in her house. They were £30ish each on ebay - might help warm the house up?

Snog Tue 02-Apr-13 15:37:43

Its a nice house. i would get some new photos of the kitchen.
Is your house south facing? If so I would mention this.
Either putting in central heating or dropping the price wouldake it easier to sell imo

Mandy21 Tue 02-Apr-13 16:57:40

I agree that its not anything to do with the photographs - if you're getting lots of viewings then people are attracted enough to the property by what they can see online to spend their time coming to view it. The fact that you're not getting any offers after lots of viewings means that there is something wrong with the house / something putting viewers off once they get there / making people think it is not worth the money (but even in that case, if it was still attractive albeit not at £11ok, you'd have thought people would make a low offer).

What are your neighbours like? Are they well maintained? The photo of the front of the house suggests that your neighbours might be a bit scruffy? Is the road itself ok? Have you kept the inside of the house as it appears on the photos? Is it clean and fresh? I agree that it might be to do with the heating too, particularly over the cold weather - if people come in and it feels cold (and sometimes houses can smell/feel a little bit damp if they're cold) then people will be out off. I agree thats something thats worth doing straightaway to increase the chances of a sale.

If you think its your neighbours / the road, then I'm afraid thats going to have to be reflected in your price because those things are out of your control.

It could be the neighbours. Are your neighbours students? I'd run a mile from the prospect of students for neighbours in a terraced house. It's very hard if the issue is that prospective buyers are worried about the neighbours, as it really isn't within your control.

It may be that dropping below £100k would bring in potential purchasers who put £100k as their maximum on search engines, so if you are advertising at £110k with the hope of getting £95k you might be missing a section of potential buyers. I did ask earlier what you were hoping to get - I've realised that answering that woud be unwise in case potential puchasers came across this thread.

lottielou02 Tue 02-Apr-13 20:16:08

Thanks again for all the tips everyone. I will definitely try and declutter a bit more and rearrange things in the lounge as lots of people seem to agree on these points.

With regards to pictures etc, I have a huge very colourful painting in the lounge, it just happens to be on the only wall not photographed. And on the right of the fire I have a chest of draws with pictures, a plant, lamp, ornaments and flowers on. So I think perhaps the photos make the room a little plainer than it is.

In terms of heating, we have electric heaters and the house is always warm when people come and view.

The neighbours are all lovely and no students I know of, its a nice quiet road.

Pricing is difficult, as its less than I had it valued at independently, and less than most of the similar properties near by. Two others on my road are on at £115k and £122k. I think I will declutter etc, try new pics and be more patient.

LynetteScavo Tue 02-Apr-13 20:21:54

If you are getting lots of viewings, but no offers, then I think the EA are doing their job, but it's when people are actually looking they don't really like it.

The photos could be better, so yes get them re-done, and do the flowers/fresh bread/coffee thing and be out when people view. Remember, people make up their minds in the first 11 seconds. Or something.

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