A new study reveals the top ten biggest turn-offs when viewing a home
Expert pleads with sellers to increase the kerb appeal of homes

A new ranking developed by Huddersfield based property specialist Bramleys reveals the biggest red flags for first-time buyers when it comes to booking a viewing or offer on a new home in the UK.

With first-time buyer purchase volumes rising by 35% in 20211, Bramleys surveyed 1000 UK adults to determine the top ten biggest turn-offs when looking for a new home.

Unsurprisingly, nearly one in three (30%) of prospective buyers would be put off from booking a viewing or putting an offer in on a home that has visible tobacco staining, and almost a quarter (24%) would not enquire about a house where there are signs of the owners being smokers (such as ashtrays being left out during a viewing).

Other red flags included heavily stained carpets (28%) and neighbours gardens being messy or scruffy, which would put off one in four (26%) of homebuyers. In fact, a neighbour's messy garden was more of a concern than an unkempt garden for potential buyers.

The top ten biggest viewing turn-offs for first-time buyers are:
Visible tobacco staining (30%)
Heavily stained carpets (28%)
Neighbours garden being messy or scruffy (26%)
Signs of owners being smokers (24%)
Unkempt gardens (23%)
Visible signs of half-done DIY (22%)
Old fashioned or outdated kitchen (21%)
Visible dirt or dust (20%)
Old fashioned or outdated bathroom (19%)
Dirty windows (18%)

Although many first time buyers may be looking for a house in need of renovation as a more affordable option, visible signs of DIY (23%) was the top turn off for homebuyers aged between 25 and 34 years old. One in five in that age bracket also claimed that old fashioned decor, such as wallpaper or carpets, would put them off booking a viewing.

With the largest share of Tiktok users (26%) in the UK aged 18-24, we can understand why an outdated kitchen (26%) would put first-time buyers off. The platform has become the go-to place to create and find cooking inspo with TikTokers viewing content with the hashtag #TikTokFood a whopping 43 billion times.

Homebuyers over 55 were also most put off by visible signs of the previous owners being smokers. Still, it seems that this age group are not animal lovers, as one in five (20%) would be put off viewing a home that had signs of pets, like food bowls or cages, being left out.

Paul Keighley, Residential Partner at Bramleys, said: “The housing market is as competitive as ever, for both buyers and sellers. It is vital that when you put your house on the market, you increase the kerb appeal as much as possible - by making sure your garden is clean and tidy and your home is as attractive as possible.

“Although a complete renovation may not be possible before you start viewings, a fresh lick of paint, a deep clean, and a declutter can do wonders for ensuring your house becomes a dream home for someone”.