Selling a Home During the Holidays
Thanksgiving is tomorrow, with the winter holiday season following quickly on its heals. You're busy, you're family is busy, your friends are busy - it's hard to imagine trying to sell a home during this time, but sometimes it can't be helped. There can be some advantages, though, as people who look for homes during the holiday season tend to be more serious buyers. Additionally, because many people take their homes of the market in December, serious home buyers have fewer homes to choose from, which means less competition for sellers!
Selling a home during the holidays takes some extra preparation, though. In addition to the usual sorts of cleaning, packing and staging to make the house look its best, sellers must keep some other things in mind:
- Add outdoor curb appeal with subtle wintry decorations, like a a simple wreath on the front door, a string of white lights wrapped around the porch, or a pile of neatly stacked firewood.
- Inside or outside, keep decorations simple. A few poinsettias, a strand of holiday lights, maybe some pinecones are enough. This is not the year for a life-size Santa clause in your living room.
- Don't cover important architectural features with decorations, like archways, fireplaces and mantlepieces.
- Not everyone shares the same religious beliefs. Try to avoid overtly religious decorations this year.
- If you get a tree, don't overdo it. A tree too large for your living space will make it appear cramped to potential buyers.
- Don't keep wrapped gifts under the tree, store them in a closet.
- Before people arrive for a tour, bump the heat up just a little so the house is warm and cozy.
- Playing classic holiday music softly in the background can put potential buyers into a nostalgic or festive mood. Pick something well-known and not to quirky.
- If you plan on entertaining during the holidays, let your real estate agent know ahead of time what dates the house will be unavailable for showing.
- Last but not least, bribery with holiday cookies might just work. Not only will the plate of sweets be tempting, but the smell of fresh baked goods could sway a potential buyer on a subconscious level.