Anna Hart's top tips for selling your home

Published : 9th June 2014


Have you been to view a house recently? Were you walked into a kitchen and told – somewhat unnecessarily – ‘this is the kitchen’? It is common practice for those showing people houses to announce the title of each room as it is entered, writes house staging expert Anna Hart. But when showing buyers a house, it is usually best to keep quiet and let the room speak for itself.

It is best to make it as obvious as possible to buyers what the purpose or identity of each room is – in your photographs, your floorplan, and when they visit the house for a viewing. This is especially important if your house has more than four bedrooms, or its floor plan is unusual in any way.

When we search for a new house there are a few basic parameters that we type into Zooplato narrow down the available options so the search only returns those we’re likely to be interested in. Location, price and number of bedrooms are the three major criteria, and number of bedrooms is the common way to judge how large a house is.

While there are dozens of uses for a bedroom other than for sleeping, when you’re selling, my rule is that you’re best to give buyers what they will feel comfortable with, what they expect, and what they can understand.


That means if you’re selling a house that is listed or described as having a living room, dining room and four bedrooms, then you need to show your buyers a living room, a dining room and four bedrooms – not a living room, an office, two bedrooms, a gym and a storage room.

Many people find it difficult to imagine things any other way than how you present them. So if they’re looking at photos expecting to see four bedrooms and they only see two, the first thing they have to do is work out which of the other photos are the dining room and the missing two bedrooms. This makes extra work for buyers, and that’s never a good idea if you want to wow them and keep them happy. You want to tick their criteria boxes immediately, not make them work.

Anna’s top 5 tips for presenting easily identifiable rooms:

  1. If a room counts as one of your advertised bedrooms, put an appropriately sized bed in it. It means double beds for double rooms, avoid king size unless it really is large enough to take it, and use single beds for smaller rooms.

  2. If you’ve got a downstairs room that’s not a kitchen, utility room or lounge, then put a dining table and chairs in it and call it the dining room.

  3. Try to define and present a positive use for extra rooms, such as rooms upstairs that are not listed as bedrooms, or additional living spaces downstairs. Office, studio or library are far more attractive than ‘dumping grounds’ or storage areas.

  4. Always have a floor plan on your internet listing, and make sure the room names match up with the image you’re presenting in the photos for each room.

  5. Ask your estate agent to name each photo on your internet listing appropriately, such as using the terms ‘master bedroom’, ‘family bathroom’ and ‘en-suite’.