An unexpected effect of the coronavirus pandemic is the surge in demand for luxury country houses. Working from home is now a way of life for many of us and buyers are searching for properties with the space inside and out that they were lacking in lockdown. No longer tied to the city, families are bringing forward plans by a year or two to make their big move to the country.
Written by Lisa Proffitt | 17th July 2020
How to sell a country house
So if you’re looking to capitalise on this new trend, what are the golden rules on how to sell a country house?
Rule 1: Find an agent you trust. Your agent must be an expert in your type of property and understand who the most likely buyers will be. As specialists in the country house market, at Michael Graham our local knowledge will inform a tailor-made marketing strategy for your home designed to maximise the number of viewings and offers and guarantee the best sale price for your home. Whether you have a period manor house, a thatched cottage or an old rectory for sale, our contacts book may well already contain your ideal buyer.
Rule 2: Make sure the price is right: Prices quoted by different agents for the same house can vary wildly. Flattering as it might be, plumping for the highest price and lowest commission isn’t necessarily the right move. You could miss out on viewings and wait a long time for any offers. An agent who prices your house right will attract more interest from buyers and may also increase the chance of competitive bidding, driving up the sale price.
Rule 3: Present your house beautifully: Decluttering and DIY became national pastimes during lockdown when we had so much more time on our hands. Most of us have recently painted at least one wall, tackled an overgrown area of the garden or re-grouted the shower. If you’re planning on selling your home now you may well be ahead of the game.
Rule 4: Declutter mindfully. In decluttering as in life, there is a balance to be struck. A house must have a warm and lived-in feel so that people can imagine themselves living there. Property makeover shows on television inspire us to pare things down, but in real life and especially in country houses, the result can feel spartan rather than stylish. A slick city pad is one thing, but country houses dressed in a minimal style will look uncomfortably bare. The key is to marry style with comfort and sell the dream of a luxury lifestyle.
Rule 5: Emphasise the extra benefits in and around your property: Nearby schools that are rated ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted, local farmer’s markets and clubs and gyms within easy driving distance are all worth a mention. Prospective buyers may think they want the rural idyll, but if they’re moving from the city they might appreciate the comfort of knowing the location of their nearest Starbucks. Also point out any development opportunities around the property – outbuildings that can be converted to a home office, or land that can be rented out. Your asking price will suddenly seem more manageable.
Rule 6: Be security savvy: Make sure you go with an agent committed to security checking any potential buyer before showing them around your home. As well as our stringent Coronavirus protocol, at Michael Graham our multiple security checks verify the identity of any potential buyer before they are taken on a viewing. In every way our aim is to safely get you moving again.
Do you have a country house you would like valued? Or perhaps you’re looking to buy a country retreat? Our Michael Graham team are ready to help. Click here to find your local Michael Graham office or book your valuation now.
All three properties below have a countryside location and access to an excellent transport network.
Market Square, Toddington, Dunstable, Bedfordshire, LU5 6BP
Long Acre Farm
67 The Highway, Great Staughton, St Neots, Cambridgeshire, PE19 5DA