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Would an empty house put you off?

(39 Posts)
LizzieMint Wed 02-Apr-14 14:13:37

As Kirsty was saying on best of both worlds yesterday? Bit concerned as we are hoping to sell our house after we've moved out of it, for various reasons. So would a house being empty put you off making an offer? Or would the fact that there's no chain/no delays make up for it?

Poosnu Wed 02-Apr-14 14:19:09

Possibly. An empty house seems cold and it's difficult to judge the size of the rooms. Can you leave some furniture?

LackaDAISYcal Wed 02-Apr-14 14:20:40

It wouldn't put me off; in fact I'd assume that a quick sale was needed and would be inclined to put in a lower offer.

LondonGirl83 Wed 02-Apr-14 14:21:24

No chain is a huge plus. However, a lot of people can't judge how they will use a room (what size furniture etc will fit) if its empty. Can you leave a few things behind?

krazipan Wed 02-Apr-14 14:21:43

My house had been empty for a while and I got thousands off as he was looking for a quick sale.

LizzieMint Wed 02-Apr-14 14:29:48

We could possibly leave some things, we'd be renting for a while so depends if we rented furnished or not I guess. Hmm, interesting. We wouldn't need a quick sale especially (or want to take thousands off!) so that's worth thinking about.

50shadesofmeh Wed 02-Apr-14 14:34:13

No I bought a house that had been lying empty for about 2 years, we got some money off and it had the added attraction of not being in a chain.

Bambi75 Wed 02-Apr-14 14:36:40

I sold my flat last year empty. It was a lovely flat and the estate agents said it would go quickly but it ended up taking quite a time to sell. Since there wasn't any specific negative feedback I came to the conclusion that its empty state put people off. Unfortunately most people have zero imagination or wherewithal about these things. I would advise you to leave a few things behind to make it look a little homely. Otherwise, there are companies who will 'stage' a home for you for the purposes of sale but I would imagine they are not inexpensive.

stackablegoatbearingcheesecake Wed 02-Apr-14 14:45:29

The things that would put me off would be if the house was cold and probably if the windows were left bare. So if you can leave the window blinds and curtains in situ that's better and leave the heat on low in cold spells.

I think people do assume that the vendors having already moved on means the possibility of a cheaper deal, but of course, it's up to the individual what they would accept.

One thing to do is check your property insurance, the clause about being empty longer than 30 consecutive days.

cavell Wed 02-Apr-14 15:17:16

I agree with the poster who said that most purchasers have zero imagination and can't imagine how a space would look furnished. That is one of the reasons why new developments have a show house.

I don't think you have to leave a house fully furnished - just enough to suggest how a room could be used and to show what size of furniture would fit. So, bedrooms need beds, a sofa or two for the living room and a table and chairs for the dining room.

The other thing is that any flaws in a room become very apparent once a room is emptied of all furniture - e.g. marks or cracks on walls, indentations on the carpet where a heavy piece of furniture used to stand, and so on.

HaveToWearHeels Wed 02-Apr-14 15:21:57

I actually prefer viewing empty houses, you see it with all it's flaws that way. I have a wonderful imagination rose tinted glasses, so have no problems putting my stuff into rooms in my head, I find other people stuff a distraction.
Just consider making it warm for viewing as there is nothing worse than walking into a cold house.

CharleyFarnsbarns Wed 02-Apr-14 15:34:55

I've seen a few empty houses recently and while I have the imagination to see beyond the emptiness, it does show up all the problem areas eg marks on carpet and generally the houses feel a bit unloved and sad.

LizzieMint Wed 02-Apr-14 15:44:24

Oh god I hadn't even thought of the problems showing up more! I think it'd be largely ok, the house is not that old and most has been decorated fairly recently. I know in our bedroom though, there's a old bit of carpet under our wardrobes from when previous owners had carpet replaced, they just cut up to their wardrobes and didn't bother going under. We haven't replaced that carpet so it's currently buried under our wardrobes!
Ok, lots to think about and investigate - good point re: insurance. Thanks!

MrsJohnDeere Wed 02-Apr-14 15:49:14

I prefer beds, tables, and a few bits of furniture so that I can get an idea if my furniture will fit in the rooms. I know I could take measurements along on viewings but I'd never remember to do so...

I would also assume that I could knock money off the price and push for a quick sale if it is empty.

Have you checked with your insurer abut leaving the house empty? We planned to do that when we sold ours recently (relocation) but it was a big no-in so we had to stay put and rent in the new location too.

MrsJohnDeere Wed 02-Apr-14 15:50:03

Sorry missed the bit abut insurance earlier blush

oscarwilde Wed 02-Apr-14 16:11:17

I think if the whole place has had a good scrub and been freshly repainted in something light it can be a very good thing. It will instantly look bigger for one which if the buyers have no imagination is good.
Otherwise as someone has said, it can all look a bit sad.

cafesociety Wed 02-Apr-14 16:37:31

I only buy properties that are empty. I get a better idea of the size and shape of the rooms and see all the otherwise hidden bits. It is a more honest house when seen without being tarted up.

I'm also happier a place has been vacated so no one can change their minds/delay exchange etc. and there isn't a chain. It's always worked for me.

Forago Wed 02-Apr-14 17:21:49

Almost all of the properties I have owned or rented I have viewed empty - I prefer it as you can see the real size of the room and determine whether your furniture would fit etc. I like blank canvases and hate clutter - a furnished, cluttered place puts me off not an empty space.

LizzieMint Wed 02-Apr-14 18:45:46

I found an old thread on the same topic and one of the suggestions was having the photos done while the house is lived in, and then obviously it would be empty for viewings. Sounds like a good plan? I think the advantages to us of moving out into rented are too great to forgoe really.

Bambi75 Wed 02-Apr-14 18:52:31

I'd be careful - you might put people off even more if what they see is a 'home' in the marketing and they view it empty and are underwhelmed. Agents I've spoken to about this in the past have always advised against this. Its better that what potential buyers see in the marketing materials - furnished or empty - is actually what they get when they view it.

HauntedNoddyCar Wed 02-Apr-14 20:49:04

We bought ours unoccupied. DH is convinced fewer people were interested because it was empty.

Nojustalurker Wed 02-Apr-14 20:59:05

No but a property can easily become cold and small problems can arise without notice. Will you be doing the viewings or relying on estate agents. Some estate agents are shocking at viewings.

polkadotdelight Wed 02-Apr-14 21:03:59

I prefer to view a furnished house as I have difficulty with spatial/judging sizes. DH prefers unfurnished because it's harder to hide things.

NotGoodNotBad Wed 02-Apr-14 21:06:29

I prefer to see empty houses - I can imagine myself in them more easily than when they have someone else's furniture. And I don't have a problem assessing the size of rooms.

But I acknowledge I'm probably weird.

NotGoodNotBad Wed 02-Apr-14 21:08:37

In fact, out of 7 flats/houses we made offers on I think 4 or 5 were empty.

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