There are many factors to consider when deciding to sell your home by owner, and the truth is, sometimes time of year just isn’t one of them. The holidays might not seem like the best time of year to sell your home, but your perfect buyer may be out there looking during the holiday season for reasons of their own. So when the first leaf falls or you hear holiday music at the mall, don’t automatically shelve your selling plans. Adjust your approach and work with the season to emphasize your home’s positive traits. There’s ample reason to keep your home selling process chugging regardless of the time of year.
Here are some helpful tips for working within the seasons:
• If it’s rainy season in your area, keep an umbrella stand and coat rack near the front door so guests can easily shed their rain gear when they come in the door.
• Offer refreshments that work for the season.
• Create a season-appropriate ambiance in your home. For instance, in cold weather light a fire if you have a fireplace and making sure your heat is set for a warm, comfortable feeling. Buyers who visit your home during cold weather months will want to know that they’re not going to shiver in the winter if they buy your place.
• In fall, rake your leaves, prune trees and shrubs and weed out plants that are on their last legs, but also play up the positives. If you have an outdoor fire pit, keep that area tidy and surrounded by seating so buyers can envision themselves roasting marsh mellows on a crisp fall evening. And put up a few Halloween decorations if the time is right. Don’t litter your lawn with scary stuff or bombard visitors when they enter your home, but a few Halloween items will add some festivity to your home.
• During the holiday season, don’t put up overtly religious decorations. That could be a turn off for potential buyers. Decorating for the season can add cheer to any home, but select more generic fall or winter decorations such as leaves, pinecones and snowflakes. These decorations will warm-up your home without cooling off buyer interest. Don’t overbook your calendar with holiday parties, shopping for presents and travel plans. You want to be available – and flexible – for showings. Remember, your home isn’t going to sell if you aren’t available to show it to potential buyers, during any season.
• If it snows, make sure your sidewalk and driveway are clear and accessible before any showing or open house. Even if your driveway won’t be in use during a showing, leaving it snow covered sends a “Man, it’s hard to clear this driveway,” type message. Also, be sure you have runners in place for visitors to wipe their boots in snow season and a coat rack for them to use.
If you are motivated to sell you can work within any season to sell your home by owner. There are always potential buyers out there. Once you get them interested in your home you can prepare yourself and your home for a successful showing at any time of the year.