I’m sure that people in the UK are very different to those in Portugal. In fact, a friend of mine here, that works part time for an estate agent, says, “I suggest to people that they do a little cleaning and tidying of the property prior to the photos being taken”. He tells me, they never take any notice.
When I first viewed the house, I was a bit disappointed to see that in reality, it was not as good as the photos I’d seen on the web suggested. My views are changing now because what disappointed, was the cosmetic condition. Don’t get me wrong, there is very little wrong with the property apart from visually and then, that’s externally. One thing the Portuguese people love to do, is hoard items that are pasts their best by date. Okay, let’s be honest. Keep junk.
They say a picture speaks a thousand words. That may be correct in many instances but seldom, in the case of marketed properties. My property was tired and neglected externally. Paint was pealing, there was rust and cracks and tons of clutter and there was also a great deal of dirt. Generally, the cleaning of dirt is cheap work and with a little effort, can cosmetically transform an item, and in this case, house and increase saleability and also, potentially add value.
When I came here, I walk through gates that had not been cared for, for many years. I passed a stairway as seen here, that leads to a roof terrace that appeared black. Along the driveway there was items fit for the bin. The main rear entrance door was hidden by a 1000 year old plastic fly-screen in faded blue and discoloured dirty white. Was it a good start? The first impression had been set.
Within the property, things improved on the ground floor, and the upper floor, was a delight with good quality furniture that remained. Still, my spirits had been dampened from the start. Now the gates look new, the driveway will become far better with imagination and the stairway to the roof terrace, shall be improved further even though, it is almost gleaming now. And, to mention the fly-screen again, sits a new high security door, unnoticed fully on my initial viewing.
I visited the property several times before I agreed to purchase. My visits were unannounced and on all occasions, I only saw the exterior, again and again. Each time, the property looked neglected in my eyes. I was tempted to walk away at some point, but eventually, I could see the potential with countless hours of tender loving care and attention to much needed detail also.
The Portuguese people to my mind are wonderful and the previous owner, an elderly lady was most charming, and I felt, honest and open where she even said, it was not a pretty house. I beg to differ now as, it’s charming in it’s own right and typically Portuguese in style which is what I wanted.
Why oh why are people so short sighted in their marketing efforts is beyond me. They could benefit a great deal with just a little forethought and imagination.