Shine a light on your home’s best features

When a property is for sale, the owners usually try to ensure that it looks its best and will often repaint, steam clean carpets, clean out clutter and spruce up the garden ahead of potential buyers coming to view it.
But they should also be sure not to miss one of the most important factors in creating a great first impression: Good lighting. “A lot of prospective buyers are only able to visit at night after work and even those that do come on showdays will find it difficult to see how clean, fresh or neat the property is if the interior is uniformly dim,” says Berry Everitt, MD of the Chas Everitt International property group.
“Given the right lighting, however, the look of a room can go from mediocre to sensational. For example, localised lighting can be used in a very large room to stop it looking sterile and create several cozier areas. Downlighters can help to ‘shorten’ very high ceilings; washing a wall with light will visually push it away to open up a room and make it look bigger, and illuminating the wide sides of a long, narrow room will make it look shorter.”
Writing in the Property Signposts newsletter, he says accent or spot lighting will draw attention to the room's best feature, such as a fireplace. In the kitchen, down-lights should be grouped to focus more light on the work areas. In the bathroom, wall-mounted sconces or over-vanity lights beside the mirror are a good idea, and the interior of the shower should be well-lit.
“Best of all, changing the lighting in a home is inexpensive, especially when compared with other home decorating or renovating options. The range of modern light fittings available and a wide selection of CFLs and LEDs, which last much longer than normal bulbs and use less electricity, means no homeowner needs to be in the dark.
“What’s more, a little imagination and the correct advice on what fittings to use to create the effects that you want can really boost the value of your home to a potential buyer.”

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