Top 10 features that will sell your home fast

Reliable broadband, central heating and double glazing are key priorities for buyers

brick wall house with brown window and roof top
(Image credit: Future PLC/ David Giles)

Today's potential homebuyers are putting practical concerns ahead of
aesthetics. They are looking for well insulated properties that
are energy efficient and offer a strong broadband connection. Here are the top 10 property must-haves that buyers look for:

1. Central heating

Most, if not all buyers want to know how old your boiler is and check that it produces sufficient heat and plenty of hot water when it is needed. Make sure it is regularly serviced and has been fully service beforehand.

electric heater in wooden cabinet

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Colin Poole)

2. Double glazing

Estate agents insist that new double-glazed windows or fitting secondary glazing inside existing windows will add value while making a home that much more sellable.

two storey house with red roofing and double glaze window

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Matt Cant)

3. A garden

If you're buying in London or buying a first home or flat, chances are you'll be hard pressed to find a property with a good-sized garden. But no matter how small a space you can transform it with an inexpensive dining set or a few pretty, potted plants.

dining table and chairs in open garden with plants and tree

(Image credit: Future PLC/ David Cleveland)

4. Secure doors and windows

Safety features such as solid doors, landscape lighting and home security can attract buyers and help you sell your house quickly. Many home insurance companies offer discounts if your home has a monitored security system.

white solid safety door and windows

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Simon Whitmore)

5. Off-road parking

Not having private or off-street parking can impact your house's value. As well as reducing the risk of vehicle crime, parking can allow residents to avoid parking and congestion charges.

parking space with grey door and parked car

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Paul Massey)

6. A bath tub

While a shower cubicle might be more of a practical investment, the striking looks of a freestanding bath tub will attract potential buyers. Don't be tempted to remove a bath no matter how small your bathroom: families with babies and young children will struggle without one and by removing it you are reducing the pool of potential buyers for your property. Avoid major overhauls where possible, but do update the lighting, install new taps, mirrors and doorknobs if they are looking tired. Keep colours neutral - this will appeal to the majority!

bathroom with grey wall white bathtub and grey wooden flooring

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Malcolm Menzies)

7. Local shops and amenities

Prepare information about your local area. If your estate agent isn't so knowledgeable, then think about preparing a list of useful facts for your buyers yourself. Tell them about local schools, the walking distance to the
train station, where the nearest shops and other local amenities are.

8. Friendly neighbours

If you're lucky enough to live in a welcoming neighbourhood and find your neighbours to be helpful and friendly, then don't be afraid to say so. It's one of the most important elements of getting a sense of place and is not something that househunters can readily assess for themselves when viewing a property.

people seating on green lawn plants and wooden drawer in lawn

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Simon Scarboro)

9. A good, reliable broadband connection

It is no surprise that technology plays a defining factor in your choice of home and location. Most new buyers place extreme importance on technology, from streaming live TV and films to reliance on mobile phones. Superfast broadband is delivered via cable or fibre-optics and means you can stream TV, music or data without delays.

television unit and remote

(Image credit: Future PLC/ Simon Whitmore)

10. A good energy-efficiency rating

If you're planning on selling your home, you must provide an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). An EPC is a document that gives your property a rank in terms of energy efficiency and is something that sellers have to give to purchasers. It's a good idea to apply for your Certificate prior to putting your home on the market.

Make sure your home is in 'move-in' condition

Aesthetics are important, but it's also important that appliances, electrical and plumbing fixtures be in compliance with current building codes and in full working order.

Give potential buyers the impression that they will be able to move right in and start enjoying their new home, rather than spending time and money fixing it up.

For many buyers, the on-going costs of running a home - paying the mortgage, utility bills and council tax - are a real and expensive concern. It's perhaps unsurprising then that well insulated homes and central-heating systems feature high on their list of priorities.

Improve your home's kerb appeal

Even if you are not planning to sell your home anytime soon, a fresh and
welcoming exterior is a wonderful thing to come home to each day. And, when selling your home, appearances mean a lot. What better way to set your home apart than to make it instantly attractive? Think a fresh coat of paint, new doors, patio lighting, blooming flowers.

Other must-have features include a landline telephone, at least two toilets, a garage, an en-suite bathroom, a good TV signal and a reliable and clear mobile phone signal.

Even if you were to have all these features, there are no guarantees that in the current market you will sell your home, but every little helps...

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Heather Young

Heather Young has been Ideal Home’s Editor since late 2020, and Editor-In-Chief since 2023. She is an interiors journalist and editor who’s been working for some of the UK’s leading interiors magazines for over 20 years, both in-house and as a freelancer.