Author: Suzie Wilson
Suzie Wilson is an interior designer with more than 20 years experience. What started as a hobby (and often, a favor to friends) turned into a passion for creating soothing spaces in homes of every size and style. While her goal always includes making homes look beautiful, her true focus is on fashioning them into serene, stress-free environments that inspire tranquility in all who enter. Ms. Wilson’s mission with Happierhome.net is to offer you insight into how to turn your home into a sanctuary that you’ll not only be happy to come home to, but will actually make you feel better when you’re there.
It’s no secret that, statistically, more homes are sold in the spring and summer months than other times of the year, but that doesn’t mean you should shy away from putting your home on the market in the fall and winter. In fact, you might be able to sell your home even quicker in the colder months. When the weather is warm, the market is saturated with homes and it can take serious effort to make your home stand out. With less competition, you may be able to get more eyes on your property.
The best news is that in the colder months, you know that buyers are motivated and not just looky-loos. After all, why would they take time out of the holiday season or brave the freezing weather if they didn’t actually want to buy?
Get ready for cooler weather
When temperatures drop, the last thing you want is buyers to be cold when touring your home. Change air filters, have the HVAC system checked, replace weather stripping around doors and windows, and add more insulation, if necessary. If you have a fireplace and chimney, have them cleaned and inspected.
Concentrate on curb appeal
If potential buyers don’t like what your home looks like from the outside, they’ll never even come inside. In the spring and summer, curb appeal is all about colorful blooms and fresh green lawns, but when the colder weather arrives it’s a different story. Make sure your trees and bushes are trimmed and the leaves are always raked so things are well-kept and attractive, and if there is snow, keep the driveway and walkways cleared.
There are some other ways to improve curb appeal in the cooler months as well, like touching up your home’s trim and replacing missing siding or fence posts. Quicken Loans suggests a warm welcome by painting your front door and adding a new welcome mat. You should also add a few cold-weather potted plants to your front porch. These are low-cost ways to put the focus on the entry of your house rather than a drab looking yard.
Prepare for showings during the holidays
The holiday season is a busy, often chaotic, time of year, but it’s not impossible to sell your home during this time. In fact, the sales process can sometimes be quicker than usual because buyers are often on a deadline, real estate agents are more available, and lenders are not backed up. Staging can be easier too because you already have beautiful seasonal décor.
It can, however, be difficult to get your home ready quickly for showings. With that in mind, you should establish a routine. Make it a habit to make your bed immediately after waking up, wipe down your dining table and kitchen counters after each meal, and keep everything off your bathroom vanity. If you get a late call to show your house, put any dirty dishes in the dishwasher, take out the trash, stash toys and clutter into storage ottomans, open window coverings, and turn on all the interior and exterior lights.
Light things up
Speaking of lights, with less daylight, you will need to make an effort to bring as much light as possible into your home. If you don’t do this, the darker months can make it looks dingy and drab inside. Remove screens from windows and replace heavy draperies with breezy curtains to allow natural light in. HGTV also suggests adding extra floor lamps in dark corners, switching out light bulbs to brighten up spaces, and investing in landscape lighting.
Get professional photos taken
When the weather is colder, buyers are more apt to look at homes in depth online, rather than by driving around. Therefore, your listing photos need to stand out. Consider investing in professional staging, as well as obtaining high quality photos and an online video tour for your listing. You want to give potential buyers the best impression possible.
Don’t fear putting your home on the market in colder weather. The buyers are serious, and competition is light. With a boost of curb appeal, proper lighting, and great marketing, you may end up with multiple offers on your house before you know it.
Image courtesy of Unsplash