Home selling really knows no season. While it is true that when the daffodils are in bloom and the lawn is a beautiful shade of green, your home looks much more appealing than it would on a cold, grey winter day with a barren landscape. But even in winter, you have an excellent chance of selling your home at top achievable dollar.
The numbers of home buyers out there looking on a cold winter day are certainly less than when temperatures are ideal, but the buyers out there in their coats, hats, and boots looking in the “dead of winter” are “deadly serious” buyers. Here are a few tips that will help ensure success:
Create The Best Possible Curb Appeal
Clean up your landscaping beds, removing all dead plant material. It is a good idea to add some fresh mulch that will give your winter landscape a crisp, clean look.
Make It Safe And Convenient To View Your Home
If your home could talk, you would want it to say, “Welcome!” Making your home readily accessible can be an extra burden, especially when those last-minute showing requests come in. But it is very important to make sure you provide adequate parking for your prospective buyers, keeping the driveway clear of leaves, snow, and ice. It not only makes it easier for the buyers to get inside – it also shows the buyers you care for your home and grounds, providing that all-important positive first impression. And the last thing you want is buyers tracking snow and mud through your home.
It is a good idea to provide disposable shoe protectors at the door with a nice note that asks buyers and their Realtor to please put them on prior to entering your home. It will prevent damage to your floors as well as, once again, showing the buyers that you care about your home. A buyer wants to buy a “well cared for” and meticulously maintained home.
Brighten Each And Every Room With Lots Of Light
Light affects mood. If you want your home to be happy, and put your buyers in a good mood as soon as they walk in, have
every light on – even in the closets. Since many winter days tend to be grey and gloomy (we certainly have our fair share of grey days in the Louisville area), brighten the mood with lots of artificial light, and take advantage of natural light as well by opening up all the curtains and blinds.
Your Home Should Smell Great, Too
With doors and windows closed tightly against the winter cold, odors can get trapped inside as well. Your home has to smell as good as it looks, so you might want to ask your Realtor if he or she notices any odors in your home, and take action to eliminate them. Pet odors can really become more noticeable in the winter, so be sure to clean litter boxes daily, clean your pet’s bedding, and shampoo your carpets. Prior to showings you can use a room fragrance, but be sure to choose a very clean scent – nothing flowery or strong. The last thing you want is for Buyers to think you are masking odors such as pet urine
or smoking odors.
And speaking of smoking, most people today no longer smoke in their homes, but sometimes the smoke odor follows you back indoors. Smoke odors can be a huge turnoff for Buyers because they know how hard it is to eliminate. If you have any smoke smell in your home, take any and all measures to get rid of it. You may need to purchase or rent ozone machines that can help neutralize smoke odors. Painting can help as well.
Add Splashes Of Color
The world outside in winter is shades of grey and browns, so why not make it a refreshing and pleasant surprise to walk into your home and find bright colors? Nothing wild of course, but you can add fresh colorful fruit in bowls, and flower arrangements full of pretty Spring flowers. Set your kitchen and/or dining room tables with brightly colored placemats and tableware. You don’t have to spend a lot of money here. Discount stores carry these household items at very reasonable prices.
Mood Music Can Put Buyers In The Mood To Buy
Walking into a home where there is a soft bed of music playing tends to put the home buyer at ease, and makes taking a tour of your home a more pleasant experience. Studies have shown that people tend to linger a little longer in homes that have music playing in them. I suppose that’s why retail stores and grocery stores have music playing to lighten your mood and encourage you to spend more money.
Ask Your Realtor To Showcase Photos Of Your Home In Every Season
You can tell Buyers that when the trees are in bloom the back yard offers great privacy, but it really helps if they can see it for themselves in photos. Through spring photos you can show them all those lovely perennials that are now dormant, or you can help them to visualize how that maple tree turns a bright orange in the fall.
It’s All Relative
As you can see, with just a little extra effort, you can sell your home in winter. And since there aren’t as many Buyers out there looking for homes, you won’t have to show it as often before you find the right Buyer. Good luck!