Registered Building Practitioner DB-L 27499

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The Wow factor

27-May-2015

I’ve been watching some new townhouses being built for ages now. They took around 12 months to build and look quite smart from the outside. Now, they are for sale. Of course, I took a look inside them during a recent open for inspection.

What I find really interesting is that they have been “for sale” for around 3 months now – a long time for the developer to achieve their projected profits. Now, I know that the person who owns the land has done this as a development – they are looking for a profit. What surprises me is that they just don’t add up. The outside looks great, they have good street appeal, the colours used are “on trend”. However, as my husband said when we were discussing them, “It’s all OK, however there is no WOW factor- it’s just plain”.

This really sums it up. There is nothing exciting, new or worthy of a WOW! The inside of the house doesn’t match the look of the outside. From a professional point of view, the house doesn’t feel like it has been cared for whilst being created. The neutral tones are there, but there is no love in how it has been put together and a few things just don’t work because they have gone the cheapest option. For example, the courtyards have been paved. However, the pavers have been laid on a sand base. Already, the pavers aren’t perfectly aligned – you just know that in 12 months time you would have to rip them up and start again, preferably on a concrete base. The tiles – both floor and wall are a nice neutral colour. However the floor tiles are ceramic and the wall tiles are a polished porcelain. Interestingly the floor tiles are smaller in size than the wall tiles and they have been laid in a way so as to accentuate their differences rather than complement each other.

There is no “feature” light fitting or tile or vanity unit or tap. Everything is plain. I’m sure it all works fine and is serviceable, however often people who are looking to buy want to be able to walk in and say, WOW, this (insert what ever item you like) is fantastic. It could be something inside or something outside. It doesn’t really matter, just so long as there is something that makes people go WOW. Now, this also means that not everyone will be going “WOW” that’s great, some will be going WOW that’s not something that I like – however at least it provides a talking point!

On the flipside, whilst it is a fantastic marketing and selling proposition to have something that says WOW, it is also easy to go overboard! Too many WOW features can be just as detrimental to a property as none. You know, when you go… Oh my goodness, there is just SO MUCH going on, I just don’t know where to start… Too many WOW’s and too much busyness can put many people off. So limit yourself to 1-2 WOW features.