With many people travelling south and cold weather making house hunting not so appealing, winter can be a challenging time to sell your home. However, fewer homes on the market means yours will get more attention from buyers. Up the coziness factor of your home and make it stand out to buyers during the winter season.
Here are six ways to prepare your home, and create a warm and welcoming vision for buyers.
1. Shovel the snow
When selling a home in winter clearing a path to the front door is critical. If people can’t get in they won’t go in! It’s also important for the curb appeal of your home. You need to be consistently shovelling snow off your walkways, not just once a day. Sprinkle a layer of sand or salt on all pathways to prevent ice forming. Open up all the pathways to your home — such as removing snow banks that block a potential buyers access to your path, or removing snow from decks and patios.
Designate space inside the front door where potential buyers can remove wet shoes and store wet umbrellas or big winter coats. This will help keep your own home neat and tidy. Also, it will appeal to buyers who are acutely aware of storage needs and the benefit of transition spaces in a home.
2. Turn on the heat
Set the thermostat for a degree or two above normal and leave it.
A warm house is welcoming and invites buyers to linger, and this works in your favour when it comes to selling. If your house is too cold, buyers will hurry through your home and leave with a less-than-warm feeling. Another reason for keeping your heat up is that some furnaces can be loud when they kick on. By keeping the heat up, you minimize the number of times your furnace will kick in while potential buyers are in your home.
3. Give each room a warm touch
A plump quilt at the foot of the bed or an area rug in warm colours, a cozy throw draped over the back of an armchair, fluffy robes in the bathroom are a few small touches that will make a big difference in the way a room feels to prospective buyers.
4. Set the mood
If you have a fireplace, consider lighting a small fire or turning on the gas fireplace — just make sure it is safe to do so. In the bathroom, hang plush robes and towels to create a spa like setting. Add fresh flowers around your home. This is nice touch especially in winter when nothing is green and growing outside. Turn music on low in key rooms such as the living room, family room or master bedroom.
While generally it is recommended to de-personalize your home’s decor, when selling near the holidays adding some appropriate decorations, a wreath on the door, some twinkling lights, and some greenery in urns or vases is fine in creating a friendly festive atmosphere.
The aim is to create a welcoming mood in the house that helps potential buyers visualize living and entertaining in the space.
5. Lights, lights, lights
No matter where you live or what type of home you are selling it is important to bring more light into each room. Warm light is best. Warm light bathes a room in a glow that makes it inviting—and that is the impression you want potential homebuyers to have when they are in your home.
Open up the blinds, tie back the curtains, and turn on the lights. Turn on all lamps and overhead lights. If you have a window with a less than desirable view, consider using privacy film rather than closing the curtains. The peel-and-stick film is relatively inexpensive, easy to apply, and provides privacy but lets in light.
6. Highlight other seasons
If you’ve got photos of your home’s attributes in other seasons, consider putting them on display. This is a great way to highlight your beautiful backyard, gardens, cabana and pool when they’re covered in snow.