Imagine you’re moving home. You’ve had a look around a house you’ve fallen in love with and you’re keen to make an offer.

In fact, you’re already so committed you’ve started to plan where the furniture would go in the new place and you’re toying with the idea of some new appliances too.

You have a viewing of your current home in the diary and you’re thinking you might stand a better chance of clinching a deal if you offer to include some of your old stuff in the package. The flat-pack pine wardrobe with the wonky hinge in the master bedroom would be a pig to shift anyway and, let’s be honest, the dining table has seen better days.

If your potential buyer happens to be in the buy-to-let market, you might be right. If they don’t have to deal with the little idiosyncrasies of your cast-off furniture on a daily basis, they may be willing to take it off your hands, especially if they’re planning to offer the property on the rental market as furnished accommodation.

But, if they’re not, be aware that you could be about to spoil your chance of an offer.

The best way to tempt an offer out of a potential buyer of your property is to do everything you can to help them see themselves as the owners of your house.

Why remove all your family pictures, pack the kids and the pets off with family and friends to facilitate a clutter-free viewing devoid of your personal effects – only to announce you plan to leave a lot of your old stuff behind?

Of course, if the viewer asks if you’re taking appliances with you when you leave, it’s not a bad idea to ask if they would like you to and base your response on their reply. It’s the same if they’re enchanted by a particular piece of furniture which you don’t mind parting with.

But, if you glibly announce your old three-piece suite could be part of a purchase, along with a pine dresser in the kitchen that doesn’t go with all the other wood in your new home, you might actually be presenting obstacles to an offer.

It would be a mistake to presume any buyer would see your choice of furniture as a bonus. Instead, it could just be something they would have to dispose of and, although they might get a few quid at the auction house, the hassle involved might not be something they’ve willing to consider.

So, if you have items in your home you’re not planning to move with you, by all means offer them to a buyer – but never imply they’ll be there regardless. It would be better to make a few quid yourself at the auctions, offer them to charity or simply take them to the tip.

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