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Smelling Your Way to Selling

  • 2 years ago

Many moons ago, vendors used to brew coffee and bake biscuits just before they had viewings so that the delicious smells permeated their rooms and made people want to buy their property as soon as they walked through the door.

This particular magic does seem to have worn off over the years, with buyers becoming wise to this trickery and resisting these olfactory siren songs. The good news is that you can still use scents to persuade buyers- you just have to be subtle about it.

First things first

The first thing you need to do is a very thorough deep clean so that you have a blank canvas to start with. Try to avoid using any harsh detergents, however, as you don’t want the lingering smell of bleach hanging around.

Focus more on removing the sources of bad smells than covering them up. The main sources of household pongs include carpets and rugs, animal beds, litter trays, curtains and upholstery. Hire a carpet and upholstery cleaner, wash animal beds and hunt down any other mysterious smells to eliminate them.

Subtle smells sell best

Forget the biscuits and fresh coffee, as these smell just a little too good and could distract viewers by making them hungry! Instead, you need to keep your smells subliminal so that your house has an appeal that viewers can’t put their finger on and can’t resist. Here are some of the best smells you can use in your home.


Citrus – especially lemon, lime and orange – smells are real mood raisers, making people feel more upbeat and positive. If you only choose one scent for your viewings, make it a good-quality lemon essential oil and dab it behind radiators or on diffuser reeds.


You might be wrinkling your nose up at the mere suggestion of pine, but that’s probably because you’re thinking of cheap toilet cleaner! The real deal, in the form of pine essential oil, is a different matter and can make people feel free and fresh, which is ideal for a house viewing.


Jasmine is a calming scent which can help people to focus and to feel grounded, which is useful for making prospective buyers feel at home. Plus, jasmine is one of nature’s most beautiful (if somewhat pricey) scents. 


Cinnamon is warm, welcoming and clean. It’s just one of those scents that invokes happiness and goodwill wherever it wafts. You can also use cinnamon sticks rather than essential oil – just place them on a heater or in a sunny window and let them work their wonders.


While vanilla is a byword for normal and boring, we still love its warm, gentle and familiar scent. It’s thought to relieve anxiety and promote feelings of comfort and homeliness.

Buy good-quality oils and use sparingly

Just a dab here and a sprinkle there will do the trick. Remember, less is more (especially when it comes to expensive jasmine!) – you want to suggest a scent rather than have viewers gasping for fresh air!


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