One month into 2015, if you are still sticking with your new year's resolution, you should be proud. For those trying to sell their home this year, though, there is no choice but to continue with the long-term plan. As new contenders enter the market, spurred on by their own goal, you will have to maintain your momentum to avoid being overtaken.
February is the perfect time, therefore, to perform a health-check on your home's advert to make sure it can keep up with the pack. Just as a car needs regular maintenance to remain roadworthy, your advert should be finely tuned to perform as efficiently as possible. This is your property listing MOT checklist.
Is it raining or cloudy in the picture?
Take a photo on a day when the weather is bright and appealing.
Is the outside of your home presentable?
Tidy up the garden and driveway so that your exteriors form the best first impression possbile.
Is the inside of your home cluttered?
Keep the interiors neat and clean so that every room looks as spacious as possible.
Are your kids or pets in the picture?
Take photos again without them - people and pets will only act as a distraction from what they should be paying attention to: your home.
Are you or your estate agent in the photo?
Step to the side and snap again.
Is it nighttime?
Make sure you have photos in the daytime too, which will avoid unnatural colours and distorting shadows, as well as show off both the inside and outside of your home better.
Is your picture wonky?
Use a tripod to appear as professional as possible.
How many bedrooms/bathrooms does your home have?
Make sure you tell your buyers.
Have you mentioned your location?
Be sure to highlight anything in the surrounding areas that will appeal, from beaches to shops.
How long are your paragraphs?
Brief is best: your listing is not an essay.
Have you lied?
What are you key selling points?
Whether it is a renovated home or ready to rent out to tourists, highlight your property's key selling points.
Are there any spelling mistakes?
Proofread your listing to avoid errors and create the most professional impression possible.
Have you checked with the neighbours?
An idea of the average market value around your property will give you a guide to pricing your home both realistically and fairly.
Are you near tourist attractions?
Location is not just important for well-being, but for pricing: the closer you are to the beach, the more your can raise your asking sum.
Forget what you paid
Your original purchase amount is irrelevant: your buyers are in a different market, so you must price according to the present conditions not your nostalgic memories.
Can you reduce your price tag?
If your home has been on the market for a long time, reducing the price tag can be a useful way to regenerate interest in your property.
Do you have pests or property damage?
Check your home for pests and property damage. From subsidence and broken pipes to beetles, termites and Japanese knotweed, anything can cause your home's value to drop.
What would you put on a property listing MOT?