There’s not much empirical evidence to support the claim that a pre-sale presentation makeover is also a science. However, it can be argued that pre-sale property presentation can be both an art and a science. In view of ‘dressing up’ a home, artistic factors come into play. But when it comes to targeting the potential buyer’s mindset, scientific factors take the stage. The science is called Psychology, and whether that falls under behavioural or design, it plays a critical role in home presentation.

Much like falling in love, potential buyers use their emotions to decide on whether to move on from or to participate in a property for purchase. After they fall in love with your home, their logic follows. This is to say that if they find your house attractive, they linger around to dwell on its appeal, and then to really investigate further. Read as we continue our discussion below.

The value in property makeover

There’s another concept in Psychology called Selective Attention.  This concept allows people to filter information and only spot the homes that they wanted to find. For example, if a potential buyer is looking for a balcony that offers a perfect view, that thought will cloud everything else. This leads to the notion of appropriateness in home presentation and property makeover.  A home seller cannot simply makeover because he or she wants to; the makeover job must always be a value-add strategy that aims to highlight the potential and wide appeal of a home.

The psychological aspect of decluttering

Decluttering involves taking away a home’s unnecessary elements, and often, these are a set of furniture and objects that represent the personality of the current homeowner. By decluttering, the vendor creates an important element in pre-sale presentation: space. No, the creation of space or the illusion thereof isn’t always related to extensions, taking down walls, or opening up closed spaces. It can also point towards strategic furniture arrangement and the removal of unnecessary parts and parcels.  It is critical to show off as much space and light as possible. Therefore, decluttering is not just about organising crammed wardrobes and kitchen cupboards but the entire spatial view and flow of all furniture items.

Why cleanliness matters

If a homeowner classifies wiping dust off of furniture as cleaning, then he may find selling his home a challenge. The homebuyer’s brain is programmed to spot any unwanted elements in a home, and it competes with those that they want. So if a potential buyer recognizes ‘dirt’ or ‘broken window frames,’ that may be an instant turn-off. Van Lieshout, a Speech-Language Pathologist in Canada, links emotions to first impressions. He says that while a flaw in a living space does not affect a home buyer’s decision to buy, it starts the process through emotional suspicions. For my part, I’d say that hygiene sells. It is an absolute must. Cleaning is a way to ensure that a home feels well-loved and kept, and is a critical recurring task on all our pre-sale project calendars . It’s really a no-brainer.

It’s pretty interesting to think about an attractive house. It’s pretty fun to think about a dream home. But there’s a scientific process at play between falling in love and actually going steady. Again, while still not established by empirical studies, home owners can benefit by putting themselves in their potential buyer’s shoes.