Most people sell their home during the warmer seasons, when the months start to warm up, so does the real estate market. But is this the best time to sell, well it may be the busiest, but there are some advantages to selling during winter that you may want to consider.
While the summer months are the busiest for the real estate market, it also means that there is lots of competition out there, with buyers able to choose from a large selection of homes. While the number of buyers diminishes during the winter months, those that are out there are serious buyers.
There are of course some things you need to watch out for and some things you can do to make the most of season. Here are just a few considerations when you stage your home for a wintertime sale.
Of course it’s going to be cold outside, so you need to make your home warm and inviting. Before showings crank up the heating (but not too high) and make your home look and feel nice and cozy. When buyers walk in from the cold the first thing they should say is, “it’s nice and warm in here”.
Bring in a little bit of summertime by introducing some indoor greenery, with some well-kept plants (no sad looking or dying plants) and maybe some flowers.
Make sure your home is well lit. Put on all the lights, and if you have a dark corner consider purchasing a lamp. The days are short and dark so you should ensure is not. If at all possible show your home during daylight hours, especially if you home features lots of natural sunlight. Keep those blinds and curtains wide open to let in as much light as possible.
If it’s the holiday season then don’t be afraid of holidays decorations, just don’t go over the top. Limit those flashing lights and go for a more refined classic look.
Keep the outside walkways clear of snow and ice. Not only is it dangerous and a liability, but it does not create a very good impression when buyers have to trudge through several inches of snow in order to get to your door. And remember showings can happen at any time so keep on top of the snow and don’t leave it until the Realtor calls to schedule a showing.
Of course a messy outside can mean a messy inside, make sure you keep your floors clean, invest in some inside/outside entry mats if you don’t have them, and ask your family members to take off their shoes when coming inside. If you want to stop buyers from creating a mess then invest in some disposable shoe covers and a polite sign asking visitors to use them. Rather than putting buyers off, this actually shows you care about the interior.
By following some of the tips above, there are plenty of ways that you, as a seller, can use the season to your advantage, rather than a disadvantage.
The original How to Sell Your Home During Those Cold Winter Months article was published on our real estate blog.