Homes are sold every day so if you plan to be on the market this holiday season there are a few things you need to know to help maximize your proceeds.
Prior to the coldest weather setting in be sure all of your exterior steps and railings are secure, the gutters are tight, the ground is graded away from the foundation and the exterior painting is finished as this could detract from a potential sale in the cold months.
Buyers will be spending more time looking at the interior of your home so be sure that your home shows extremely well. Here are a few tips for a successful winter sale:
- Fresh paint and carpeting go a long way. Don’t go too dark with color as most likely a lot of the buyers will be viewing your home in the evening as the days grow shorter. Lighter colors make your home show larger. Color is OK in small doses but overall it is best to stick to a neutral palette. The most popular right now is soft greys or taupes.
- Perhaps a fresh coat of polyurethane is needed to shine up the hardwood.
- Since the emphasis is on the inside, buyers will be sure to be opening closets, so everything in your closet must be organized and closets and drawers should not be over stuffed. Half-full closets will show larger as well giving the feeling that there is ample storage.
- Be sure the furniture is appropriately sized to the room it is in. Couches with large arms make even a medium size room show small so perhaps if you have a couch and a love seat in the living room one of them could be placed elsewhere even if it means placing one in storage for a while.
- Light cannot be overemphasized – natural light flowing though a room makes it a cheerful space but in the evening bright lighting in the room is essential. In the evenings driveway and porch lights need to be on not only to make the home more inviting but also for safety since people unfamiliar with your home will be visiting.
- It stands to reason that as smaller pieces of furniture may need to be stored to capture the feeling of space, so too, should extra figurines, photos, and extra clothes. Summer equipment such as bicycles and jet skis should be packed away, given away, donated or sold.
- Finally, cleanliness is king! Have your home professionally cleaned before it goes on the market. Every surface, nook, cranny, light fixture, ceiling fan, molding, floor, and window should be squeaky clean.
Sellers also ask about holiday decorations, too. My feeling is this …make your home warm and appealing. An elegant wreath on the front door to greet visitors is pleasing, and maybe some white lights on a well-placed shrub but perhaps this year keep the blow up Santa and his workshop in the box for next year when he can be set up on your new front lawn!
Inside, the same thing goes…some greenery on the interior over the fireplace and an appropriately-sized tree for the room you choose to have it in should be fine as we go into the holiday season. (But don’t still have them up in February!).
Lastly, emphasis on the scents of the season – pine, sugar cookies, and cinnamon – are all great candle scents to use to make your home even more inviting.
This season call me and let me help you make your house someone else’s home!
REALTOR®, ABR, SRES
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