Looking to move home and about to put your house on the market? Here are some top tips for selling your home and choosing the right lighting from Bespoke Lights.
Most potential buyers ‘buy with their eyes’ and usually form an opinion about your home within the first 10-20 seconds of approaching and stepping through your front door. They need to be able to envisage themselves living in your home and with this in mind there is a lot you can do to spruce things up before putting your home on the market. Let’s take a look at some of our top tips before we look at lighting in a little more detail.
- First Impressions count – is the outside of your house welcoming?
- Create a light and airy feel indoors
- Refresh the kitchen
- Are your bathrooms clean and tidy?
- Are your floors and carpets clean and undamaged?
- Does your home smell nice?
What does the outside of your home look like? First impressions really do count so take a good look and if necessary give the front door a lick of paint and deal with any obvious imperfections. Tidy up the garden and make sure the windows are clean. Simply adding a nice pot of flowers by the front door can indicate to potential buyers that this is a well-cared for property.
Create a Light and Airy Feel
Moving inside – you need to create a light and airy feel. Neutral colours work best so if you have dark walls consider giving them a quick coat of magnolia. This will make the room seem bigger as well as lighter. The sitting room shown in our image is decorated in neutral colours and benefits from windows to three aspects creating a spacious uncluttered look.
Get rid of excess clutter by storing it neatly out of sight. This will make it easier for buyers to imagine making their home here. Don’t overdo this as you still want to leave a bit of personality – buyers will hopefully want to buy into the lifestyle you are presenting. This picture shows a scene you would certainly not wish to present to a prospective purchaser!
Refresh the Kitchen
The kitchen is one of the most important rooms and a well-presented kitchen can make a huge difference to your ability to sell your home. If necessary give the walls a quick coat of fresh paint and re-whiten any grout between tiles. If your kitchen units are outdated consider changing the door fronts or simply painting them – much cheaper than a completely new kitchen. Even changing the door furniture can make a big difference. New counter tops will add value but can be expensive. The kitchen shown here is largely neutral with a clean well lit look. The two Provence rise and fall pendants over the kitchen island are from our Chester Collection.
Clean and Tidy Bathrooms
Bathrooms are another important area. Simple and clean rules the day here. This can be as simple as cleaning or re-whitening the grout/caulking between tiles on walls and in shower cubicles. Adding a new bathroom mirror could also be money well spent. Our image shown here presents a fresh neutral look with a large mirror which makes the room appear larger. Perfectly finished off with the addition of our Cheadle bathroom chandelier.
Is your Flooring up to Scratch?
Do your carpets need a clean? Badly stained carpets can be really off-putting. If a carpet is badly stained it may be worth getting it professionally cleaned.
Does Your Home Smell Nice?
Having coffee brewing or freshly baked bread is the classic example often quoted to make your home more inviting but this is often not convenient. Fresh polish or freshly laundered bed linen works well too. The gently scent of essential oils from reed diffusers are a longer lasting option.
When preparing your home for sale you need to strike a balance between what to fix and what to leave alone but making the right improvements can result in a quicker sale and even a better price. The agent will almost certainly send out a photographer to take pictures and you can schedule the time so that it captures your home in the best possible light.
Now let’s take a look at the lighting in a little more detail as nothing is more off-putting to potential buyers than a dark house. The right lighting can make any room look more desirable and will certainly make a big difference to how viewers feel about your home. Up dating your lighting is relatively inexpensive and will go a long way to creating value. Here are a few hints and tips from Bespoke Lights.
Making the Most of Natural Daylight
Create a light and airy feel by making the most of any natural daylight on offer. Do not obscure the windows and ditch the net curtains and pull up any blinds. You are trying to create a sense of space. Leaving most internal doors open will maximise the amount of light throughout the house and make rooms seem bigger. Whatever time of day potential buyers view your home it should be well lit. The dining room shown here benefits from substantial natural light from the large bay windows and the addition of the two Lucia pendants over the table provide a nice relaxed light for dining.
Clever Use of Lighting – Tips From the Designers
Clever use of lighting can enhance or minimize the size of a room. If rooms have tall ceilings, lighting placed low down will make the area look smaller than it is. For smaller rooms you can visually push the walls out by washing them with light. If you room is wide, illuminate the narrow ends and conversely, if the room is too narrow, illuminate the wide sides of the room. The room featured here has a tall, vaulted, wooden beamed ceiling and although there is good natural light the clever use of artificial light ensures this is a well lit space even after dark. Several layers of light have been used to adequately light this large space. Wall spotlights have been used high up to highlight the stunning ceiling whilst our Remy wall lights have been used to bridge the gap in the middle section of the room. These wall lights direct the light both up and down the walls accentuating the height and giving a better spread of light.
Use Accent Lighting
Use accent lighting to draw attention to attractive features in a room. This can include wall lights, table lamps, floor lamps, picture lighting, or concealed lighting behind cornices or coving. Accent lighting has been provided here by our lovely Westwood weathered black wood effect table lamp. Its bold design combines perfectly with the neutral wheat coloured linen shade to make a fine feature of this small alcove.
Task lighting does what is says on the tin and simply helps with everyday tasks that are performed throughout the home. Add a floor lamp, bedside table lamps or over bed reading lights in the bedrooms. Make sure you have enough lighting around bathroom mirrors. Task lights are particularly important in kitchens – under cabinet lights not only assist with food preparation but will give your kitchen a high end look. They can also look attractive even during daylight hours. Consider leaving a few lights on when you are expecting a viewing but don’t overdo this as buyers may think it a little odd that you need the lights on during the day! The Enna book reading light shown here is a great example of task lighting. It provides a concentrated beam of low level light perfect for reading in bed as well as giving your room a boutique hotel style appearance.
All Smoke and Mirrors
Mirrors are often used by designers to make a room look bigger and lighter. This is particularly effective in smaller rooms or hallways. Both the mirrors featured here can be purchased from Bespoke Lights – just click on the images for more details. If you would like to read more tips and tricks that help make small rooms appear bigger then click below to read our blog ‘ Lighting Ideas – How to Make Small Rooms Appear Larger‘.
Are all Your Light Bulbs Working?
Make sure all the light bulbs in your light fittings are working and if necessary increase the wattage to enhance the light level – but do not exceed the maximum wattage allowed by the fitting. Consider adding some dimmer switches which will allow you to provide the right atmosphere in each room depending on the time of day. Check out the colour temperature of your bulbs as most nowadays are available in warmer or cooler whites. Those with a warmer colour range (around 2700 Kelvin) are generally better in living rooms, dining rooms and bedrooms whilst the whiter colours (3000 Kelvin or above) are best reserved for task lighting in kitchens and bathrooms. To view the latest LED and decorative light bulbs on offer from Bespoke Lights simply click on the image.
Eliminate any dark areas and corners. Table lamps and standard lamps are very good in this respect and you will be able to take them with you when you move. The corner of the study shown here is quite dark and the Chester table and floor lamp from British lighting company Original BTC has been used to add some extra task lighting. Taking their inspiration from 1960’s designs they have a relaxed comfortable style that combines satin copper with stainless steel and black braided cotton cables. The shades can be angled to direct the light offering all the flexibility of spotlights. Just click on the image if you would like further details.
Ensue your bathroom is well lit. Use wall lights or sconces either side or across the top of the mirror or invest in an illuminated bathroom mirror. Angle any recessed down lights so they bounce off the walls – this will reduce glare and shadows. Consider having a recessed downlight over any shower cubicles – very often this area is left in the dark compared to the rest of the room. The Fuji illuminated bathroom mirror shown in our image offers a modern luxurious look as well as being highly practical. It is lit by two low energy bulbs that are hidden behind the sandblasted detailing to the top and bottom of the mirror. Click on the image to view more information about this bathroom mirror.
Don’t Ignore Outdoor Lighting
Create that all important first impression by making sure the outside of your home is well lit. If potential buyers drive by after dark to have a quick look before booking a viewing, they need to be able to see your house! The entrance to your home and the front door is what buyers will see first and you need to make a good impression. Wall lights or hanging porch lights to the side of the front door are really effective and if you have a large front garden or driveway you would need to consider some additional lighting to guide visitors to your door. The Baton Rouge hanging porch light and wall light shown on the left are from our Manhattan American Collection. They are traditional outdoor lights that are just that bit different – made in die cast aluminium with a walnut finish with curved gold lustre tinted glass. In the right hand image, the front door is framed by two Londontowne wall lights from our Outdoor Coastal Lighting Collection. These lights are made from a new composite material with outstanding strength and durability designed to withstand extreme heat, brutal cold as well as salty coastal locations. In a chestnut finish with clear seeded glass they are attractive lights to use even if you do not have a coastal home.
We hope our hints and tips are useful and that you are able to sell your property quickly. If you wish to take any of your hard-wired light fittings with you when you move you will need to specify this in the fixtures and fittings schedule. Portable lighting such as table lamps and floor lamps can, of course, come with you to your new home. If you would like more details about the lights shown in this blog, simply click on the pictures.
Once you have sold your home and found a new one you will be able to start looking ahead and thinking about how to decorate and furnish your new home. If you are looking to make any alterations we would urge you to also make a lighting plan so you can factor in the right lighting. Here at Bespoke Lights we offer traditional lighting for period homes as well as an increasing range of quality lighting for modern interiors. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff are always willing to help with any queries you may have. In the meantime, you may wish to check out our previous blogs about ‘How Much Light is Needed in a Room‘ and ‘How to Avoid Common Lighting Mistakes’. Simply click on the links below.