You may have heard stories that selling your home in winter is the best way to have your home sit on the market, but this simply isn’t true. There are savvy buyers out there who know that the winter is a great time to buy a home, simply because there is less competition, and in this seller’s market, most buyers are looking for every advantage they can get. But, winter does provide you with some drawbacks, but as a motivated seller, you can overcome these drawbacks by following these steps.
Step 1: Keep the snow at bay
Snow is one your worst enemies and best friends when selling your home. It can cover up overgrown or limited gardens, but it can also cause a headache when you have showings and need the driveways and walkways clear. It is very important that you have all of these cleared, clean down to the cement. You don’t want to chance a potential buyer slipping and getting hurt. As well, a very clean driveway and walkways looks better.
Step 2: Take advantage of winter greenery
There are some gorgeous winter greens that look beautiful against a snowy backdrop. Just because it is winter, it doesn’t mean you can’t dress up the exterior of your home with seasonal plants. Visit a garden centre and find the best outdoor plants to put on your porch and other exterior areas.
Step 3: Lighten up the inside
Winter can be a dark time of year, but you can make your home seem cozy and bright with strategic lighting. Keep all window dressings open, turn on the lights and if you are having an open house, light some candles. Washing the windows ensures the most amount of light comes in.
Step 4: Dress up the home for winter
Add some blankets, cozy throw pillows, and other accessories that give your buyers the impression that they can snuggle on their couch in your living room next winter and be oh so comfortable. As well, make sure you have lots of mats at the entrances in order to ensure that the snow and dirt stay outside and contained. The last thing you want to do be doing between showings is washing floors because the last visitors trampled through your house with muddy boots.
Step 5: Don’t do Christmas
What I mean by this is that you shouldn’t over-do the Christmas and other holiday decor at this time. While you may have the best decorations in the city, it can make the home feel cluttered. Simplify and add only what is necessary to improve the room. Remember that not all buyers share your beliefs and seeing decor that is not of their taste can ruin their impression of your home.
Accentuate the coziness of your home. Before a showing, make a quick fire in you fireplace. Make sure the hot tub is cleared of snow and it is shown by the REALTOR®. Make your bathroom into a spa by having lush towels and bathrobes, as well as rolled up hand towels tied with some ribbon.
Have a selection of summertime pictures of your home, showing the beautiful gardens and landscaping. This will allow your potential buyers to envision what the home will look like during all four seasons.
Make your house sparkle: vacuum up daily, especially if you have pets, polish and shine all appliances, windows, mirrors, faucets, taps and door handles. Hold off on the fragrance sprays as it can turn some people off.
Winter can be the perfect time to sell your home, adhere to these tips and you should get top dollar for your home.
Karl Hannan is a REALTOR® and property developer
Salesperson at Royal LePage Locations North