What sells a house best?As an online estate agent, the first question we get asked is: “In your opinion, what sells a house best?”

People who come to us are keen to sell and have often suffered disappointment in the past, either not achieving their full asking price or, worse still, having their house fail to sell. Newly painted walls, clean carpets, the outside tidied up…these are all standard techniques sellers deploy when selling a house. But the newest technique, and one that is proving surprisingly popular, is ‘gender neutrality’.

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Surf a cross section of houses available on the internet and you will see that a fair proportion have mastered the art of not appearing either too feminine or too masculine. There is usually an average showing some tendencies towards items that could have been picked by her (pastel shade for the fridge, for example) and masculine influences – the large over-sized, expensive espresso machine; the butcher’s block with chef’s knives…The same is true in the sitting room – black leather sofas (the domain of the bachelor) are a definite no go; as are overtly feminine shades for the sofa and chairs. These days magnolia and beige rule. Anything that retains an aura of calm. Sure, the odd cat picture might sneak in, but chrome and photographs of motorbikes, are not to be found, it’s all looking very restrained.

Surprisingly, the men do not seem to have any say in the bedroom; patterned duvets and lots of cushions are still very popular. Chandeliers with matching bedside lamps are still popular too. All of it leans towards the female. As to what sells a house best, well, it would not help sell a house if a bedroom was full of Lynx deodorant and mirrored ceilings and black duvet covers, either.

The answer lies in neutrality. Clear away all those shoes, the make-up and the magazines – all the girly clutter. Get rid of glass, brass, satin, velvet – anything shiny at all. Your house will sell much quicker.

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It’s stating the obvious to say repair cracked tiles, put the rubbish bins around the back, banish pet smells and finish all those little DIY jobs you’ve been putting off.Latest statistics show that houses are only taking around 8.5 weeks to sell as there’s still a shortage of supply. So, if yours isn’t shifting, switch to a good online estate agency, such as Zevizo Properties and take a good look round the bedroom. Stern words may be needed but it’ll be worth it in the long run.