Listing Your Home In The Winter

Dated: 11/10/2017

Views: 228

With people away on trips, family in town  and cold weather making house hunting less appealing, winter can be a challenging time to sell your home. On the other hand, fewer homes on the market means yours will get more attention from buyers. By upping the cozy factor, making the most of winter assets and paying attention to details, you can make your house really stand out.

According to Laura Gaskill of Houzz, here are some ways to prepare and stage your home for success, and create a warm and welcoming vision for buyers.


1.) Have a cozy, crackling fire (or not)

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If you have a gas fireplace or new clean-burning woodstove, go ahead and light a fire to welcome visitors. But if your home's wood-burning fireplace is older and leaves a smoky smell in the room, hold off. Those with allergies or smoke sensitivities can be turned off — or literally turned away when they have to go outside. No fire? Consider offering warm apple cider instead.

2.) Keep entryways clean

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As with any time of year, a clean and clutter-free house will sell more easily (and maybe at a higher price) than one with more visible clutter. During winter it is especially important to remove mucky boots or shoes outside and keep family gear hidden in a closet or trunk, where potential buyers won't trip over them. A Swiffer-style mop kept in the coat closet can be used to quickly freshen entry floors before each showing.

3.) Give each room a warm touch


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A folded throw draped over the back of an armchair, a plump quilt at the foot of the bed or an area rug in warm hues are a few small additions that will make a big difference in the way a room feels to prospective buyers. Also, be sure that every light is on — even for daytime showings. Winter days can be quite dim, and your house will look its best when it's as warmly lit as possible.

4.) Show how outdoor rooms can be used even in the coldest months

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If you have a covered porch or outdoor fireplace, be sure to keep the area fully furnished. Turn on outdoor lights, build a fire in the fireplace and drape a few thick throws over your outdoor furniture.

5.) Showcase the entertaining possibilities of your home

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Winter is prime time for festive parties and holiday open houses, so whet prospective buyers' appetites with an enticing display. Set out stacks of plates and fresh flowers on a dining room buffet or display holiday cookies on cake stands in the kitchen.

6.) Do decorate for the holidays

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Buyers want to be able to envision living in your home, so it pays to make that vision as inviting as possible. Festive twinkling lights, green wreaths or topiary, and a decorated tree near Christmas will strike the right note. That doesn't mean you have to go overboard — in fact, a house overly cluttered with holiday decor can be a real turnoff.

7.) Listen To Your REALTOR When It Comes To Price

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Will you be able to command top dollar for your home and get the same price you would have had you listed in spring or summer? That depends on so many things, including your neighborhood, the available inventory, the condition of the home, and, of course, your listing price. A trusted real estate agent will take all mitigating factors into consideration and use comparables in your area to develop a pricing strategy.

When it comes to offers, remember this tidbit from Realtor.com: "Just because your home's on the market during the slow, chilly months doesn't mean you have to accept a lowball offer. If you make your home attractive in all the right ways, qualified buyers will come."

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Jeff Belzer

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