The holiday season is already a stressful time, and if you’re adding selling a house on top of it all… good luck. You’re fighting an uphill battle, with 23% fewer homes sold in the winter months and listings staying on the market five days longer than average. Plus you have events, visitors, school breaks, trips, parties, shopping, and more to contend with in your daily life.
Take a deep breath. It is possible to sell your home in the winter and it completely doable to prepare your house’s listing during the holidays. There are real, simple steps you can take to list your home during the holidays and still find the time and energy to celebrate the season.
- Have your house photo-ready by scaling way back on the interior decorations this year. After all, you are wanting to sell your home, right? The less you put out the less you have to pack back up! You probably don’t want to hear it, but you need to lose 75% of your Christmas garland and tchotchkes. Keep a few of them, but go with the simple, easy-to-keep-up decorations.
- In fact, if you are having your house professionally staged ask the professionals what they think would look best. Who knows? You might end up liking the simple, clean holiday decor they suggest. You do not want clutter, Christmas or otherwise.
- Speaking of the interior, be mindful of tracking in dirt and mud from the rain and snow this season brings. You can add fresh holiday doormats to help. You’re going to need to have the floors looking spotless.
- Make sure your mudroom– or lack of mudroom– does not appear cluttered. We understand it’s cold outside and jackets and boots are needed. But, leaving them out in the open may point out to the buyers they are missing some greatly needed space.
- It’s dark enough outside during the winter months. Make sure your home is available for showing during the brightest times of the day. Maximizing the light can help brighten things up.
- Outside lights should also be scaled back. Sorry, but now is not the time to light up the entire neighborhood with an amazing display. Plus, during the day is when your house will be shown. Those lights will distract from your home’s true beauty. You do want the outside of your house in the best shape possible. Bare trees leave no room to hide.
- The yard should be in top shape. Again, keep the decorations tasteful and simple.
- Clean your gutters! We know it’s the holidays but we do not need to see Christmas trees growing in the gutters. People recognize this as an immediate indication that your home has not been taken care of.
- You’re going to want to hire a professional photographer for your photos. They’ll know how to get your home looking the best it possibly can, and the really good ones will have multiple solutions and tricks on hand to go over with you. This part is key because the photos will be doing the heavy lifting during the cold, slow season.
- Have your professional photographer take photos at other times of the year so you can show potential buyers what the house and yard look like year-round! Or ask for a video or 3D tour for social media. In fact, make sure you are sharing your listing and all your agents are posting on social media for friends to see. More people are looking for homes online during the winter months.
Listing your home doesn’t mean missing out on the holidays. You can dial down the festive fanfare, keep things clean, and still have a festive holiday season, without causing extra work or stress. Be sure to tell your agent you want the best photographer available and to contact Photography At Dawn.