[Estimated read time: 5 minutes]
Is the thought of selling your home in the winter stressing you out? Don’t let it bring you down! Before you list your home, there are a few things to keep in mind while getting your house ready. Below we share our best tips to help get you started and make sure that your place is looking bright no matter what time of year it.
Tips to Selling Your Home in the Winter
Here in Louisville, we always see a small slowdown during the winter months. As a potential seller, you want to take the correct steps to prepare your home so it stands out from the competition. Let's take a look at the helpful tips below.
1. Highlight Seasonal Photos
Chances are you may have known for months in advance - if that is the case, consider taking exterior photos early to keep on file to showcase the exterior of the property with the grass, trees, and landscaping in full bloom. However, you don't want to necessarily use these pictures as the main photos because a buyer may see the out-of-season images online and think that the home has been on the market for months. Consider using those pictures towards the end, or even leave a photo album on the kitchen table with additional information about the property.
2. Limit Holiday Decoration
When selling your home -- life doesn't stop. Holidays will come and typically homeowners will want to decorate accordingly. However, some homeowners tend to decorate a little more than others. If you believe that you may fall into that category, consider toning it down this year. Consider saving it for next year at the new home.
You want to hold back on any distractions from the home. By lightly decorating you can still make your home inviting for holiday-themed showings but not cause a distraction to what your house has to offer.
3. Turn up the Heat
Thinking about selling your house this winter? Depending on what region you are in the temperatures may start to get pretty cold. When you get that notification of an upcoming showing, consider turning the heat up just a little so it is nice and warm for guests coming in from the bitter temperatures. Also, remember to reverse the direction that your fan spins to help circulate the warmer air that may be higher in rooms with vaulted ceilings. This can also help you save on energy cost during the colder months.
4. Keep Walk Ways Clear
As we move into the colder months and unfortunately for some, we'll start to see reports of snow. If you have your home on the market, it is important to keep safety in mind. Especially if there are any inclined walkways or steps. Always make sure they are clear of all snow and ice so nobody unexpectedly slips and falls. Shoveling your driveway is a good idea as well and will also make it look nicer.
5. Daylight Savings- Add More Light
Now that the clocks are rolled back it's getting darker earlier. Oftentimes buyers will schedule showings after normal work hours. Causing for a later, and darker showing. Sometimes showings may be after when the sun goes down! Consider adding brighter bulbs throughout the home to brighten up living areas and bedrooms. Also, make sure that if you have any burnt-out light bulbs you replace them as well.
6. The Smell of Winter
Set the mood! Many people enjoy the certain aromas that come along with fall and winter months. Consider using some of these winter scents to help make your house more inviting. Such as cinnamon scented pine cones, fresh sage wreaths, gingerbread, or even fresh cut pine. Just remember not to overdo it. You don't want it to seems as if you are trying to cover up something. Also, look online for additional tips to stage your home in the winter.
7. Get Rid of the Leaves!
Depending on the weather, if you are towards the end of the fall season or even into the winter months. Clean up the yard and walkways. Rake up all the leaves or shovel the snow from the driveway and walkways.
Having a layer of leaves blanketed across your lawn does not look good. Also, when people are viewing your property and walking around the outside of the home they may track leaves into the home.
8. Serious Buyers in the Winter
During the spring and summer months, you may get buyers coming through your house that are not necessarily serious. Especially during an open house. Some first time home buyers just want to see what's on the market because they're thinking about moving in a year or so. However, during the winter months, if a buyer is out looking at homes. They are likely very serious.
9. Less Competition
Just as there are fewer active buyers during the winter, there is also less number of sellers as well. This can be great for people who have to sell because that means there is also less competition. However, as a homeowner you still want your home to stand out. Spend the extra time and energy to make sure your home is ready to show.
10. Price Accordingly
If you look at statistics for your local real estate market, you will find that the median sale price is higher in the summer months because of higher demand. Carefully price your home accordingly. Pricing a home to high is always a mistake. Homeowners tend to want to price their homes higher to allow wiggle room. This can be a huge mistake and leave the home on the market for too long and end up going stale.
Selling your home during the winter months can bring on challenges. Planning ahead and taking extra steps to prepare for the real estate market can help you achieve your real estate goal. Do you have any tips to share on how to get your home ready to sell during the colder months? Please share below.
Posted by Nathan Garrett on