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Are you hemmablind? A quick ‘home audit’ to help you prepare to sell
Home improvement ideas & guides - add value to your home
17 February 2020

Are you hemmablind? A quick ‘home audit’ to help you prepare to sell

Rosie Hamilton
Writer & Researcher

When it comes to selling your home, everybody knows that making it look great for photos and viewings is the best way to generate interest. That’s common sense. But, it’s much easier said than done.

Many people are ‘hemmablind’. This Swedish word is literally translated into English as ‘home-blind’. But, its meaning extends beyond this to be something more along the lines of: ‘adapting to environments without questioning or fault’. It means being so comfortable somewhere that you no longer see what’s bad or what’s good about it - it just is.

Unfortunately being hemmablind can impact your home sale. It stops you seeing the small changes you need to make to highlight the best bits of your home - and to fix the not-so-good bits.

Follow these steps to conduct a quick ‘audit’ of each room in your home. The results will help you see your house afresh and show you what needs to be done to prepare your home for sale.

How to do a home audit

Avoiding distractions, such as your phone or the television, stand in the entranceway of each room. Picture what it feels like to walk into the room for the first time, and think about the following:

  • What is the first thing you see?
  • What is the focus of the room?
  • What would you like the focus of the room to be?

Next, sit somewhere in the room you wouldn’t normally. This could be a different chair or the floor. This will give you a new perspective. Take a minimum of 10 minutes to think about the following questions:

  • What does the lighting feel like?
  • Are there any bulbs that aren’t working or that are missing?
  • Does your light fitting look dusty or has it been recently cleaned?
  • What colour are your walls? Does it suit the space?
  • What personal items do you have on display?
  • How does your room smell?
  • Do you eat in this room?
  • When was the last time you thoroughly cleaned your soft furnishings?
  • Is there any furniture you don’t use?

The results

In the process of figuring out your answers you’ll hopefully have begun to ‘see’ your home a little differently. Perhaps you’ve noticed some issues that need fixing, like: blown light bulbs, a leaky tap, or cracked floorboard. Maybe you’ve realised your fireplace is actually an excellent feature, but the television above it distracts your attention away from it.

Use your results to provide direction to your efforts to prepare your home for photographs and viewings. Make a list of what needs changing or fixing and work through it. Start with the small things with the biggest impact, such as: lighting and cleaning.

Ready to do some DIY? check out our blog posts here.

Pro Tip: Ask for help

It’s hard to completely prevent yourself from being hemmablind. Sometimes the best way to ‘see’ your home in a fresh way is to ask someone who doesn’t live there for their opinion. Conduct the home audit with an honest friend (one who will be able to tell you whether your home smells like your dog, or whether your bathroom is painted an off-putting colour), or invite them round for a pretend house viewing and ask for their reaction.

If you don’t want to approach a friend for this task, ask your estate agent to help. Local estate agents will have experience of what buyers in your area are looking for. They’ll also know what the other houses on the market really look like on the inside - and how yours compares. Their advice will be invaluable for helping you decide what changes will attract the most buyer interest, and add the most value to your home.

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