All rooms in a property matter when it comes to selling a home, but some matter more than others. A number of recent polls suggest that the most important room – and the one most likely to have an influence on prospective buyers – is the kitchen.
Once humble, unloved and neglected, it is now an increasingly important consideration for all types of buyers as Britain continues to be swept up in a foodie revolution. Our love affair with food, cooking, baking and fresh produce has seemingly never been greater, with a plethora of cookery shows on the TV – Masterchef, Saturday Kitchen, Mary Berry Everyday, The Great British Bake Off, etc – best-selling recipe books clogging up our bookshelves, and an explosion in popularity of farmers’ markets, foodie holidays and street food.
Nowhere is the foodie vibe more strong than London, where trendy young professionals love to try out new and exciting cuisines, families love to bake together and retirees enjoy knocking up old British classics.
In other words, buyers in London will place a lot of importance on kitchen space. As a result of this, it makes perfect sense to make your kitchen the centrepiece of your home – and your sales strategy. During viewings, direct would-be buyers towards it first (so they get a brilliant first impression) or make sure it’s the last thing they see (so it stays fresh in their memories).
For Londoners, the kitchen is likely to be the main hub of the house, a place to cook, bake, socialise and potter. It may even be used as a temporary office, a place for teenagers to study for exams or the area for younger children to do their homework.
Kitchens vary in shape, size and look, but a few basic rules stay the same no matter what kind of kitchen you have. It needs to look bright, clean, attractive and homely. It may be rustic, contemporary, designer or more old-fashioned – whatever it looks like, make it look great.
Certain kitchens will appeal more to certain demographics. A more homely kitchen, for example, is likely to be more attractive to families, a more rustic kitchen may appeal most to older demographics and a swish, modern, tech-heavy kitchen may get young professionals licking their lips in anticipation.
There are no hard and fast rules to any of this, of course, and you can’t make your kitchen all things to all people, but if you do have certain elements of a kitchen that will appeal to certain demographics, don’t be afraid to point these out.
Generally speaking, less is more where kitchens are concerned. People don’t want clutter and mess in a place where they will be fine-tuning their best creations. Of course, you don’t want your kitchen to feel too soulless, artificial or show-homey, but at the same time a kitchen that is showing obvious signs of wear and tear is only going to receive turned-up noses from eagle-eyed buyers.
Space is a key element of any kitchen. If you have lots of space or you’re kitchen and dining room meld seamlessly together, show this off. Shine a light on it. If your kitchen is flooded with lots of natural light, point this out. If you have a smaller, more intimate kitchen, use this to your advantage. Point out how cosy and family-friendly this space is. A smaller kitchen needn’t be a major obstacle, far from it. If your kitchen looks the part, buyers will be attracted to it regardless of its size.
On the other hand, quirky, eccentric kitchens are far less likely to have wide appeal. While some may appreciate wacky décor, weird and wonderful knick-knacks and futuristic mod-cons, many others won’t. You don’t want to limit your potential pool of buyers, so it’s wise to keep your kitchen away from the slightly more zany approach. That doesn’t mean your kitchen needs to be generic or boring, but as we said before ‘less is more’ is the best mindset to have when it comes to kitchen space.
At its heart, of course, a kitchen needs to be functional and usable. There’s no point in having a lovely looking kitchen if it doesn’t work very well. So, as well as making it look great, you need to make sure it works great, too.
Remember, your kitchen is likely to be one of your biggest assets when it comes to pitching your home to would-be buyers. It is an absolutely vital part of your property and should be treated with the respect it deserves. If it is, it could just make all the difference, convincing on the fence buyers that your home is the right home for them.
As we set out above, London is the foodie capital of the UK. You can’t move for street food vans, farmers’ markets, artisan delis and food festivals, highlighting just how seriously London takes all things culinary. As a seller in London, you should therefore place a great deal of emphasis on your kitchen to up the chances of an offer being lodged.
At JBrown we have offices in Mayfair and the City, covering both West London and East London (which, handily enough, are both major foodie hubs).
If you would like more information about how we can sell your home, please get in touch with us on 0207 099 5105.
To find out how much your home could be worth in the current marketplace, why not request a free and instant online valuation?