While selling a home in the winter requires more work than selling in the spring or summer, it’s not impossible. However, brokers say that even though the number of homebuyers drops in the winter, those still looking are generally more serious about making a purchase. So luckily for those who want to sell in the winter, competition usually drops as people wait until spring.
If you’re selling and ready to host some winter open houses, here are a few tips to help sellers to ensure you wow your guests, even if the weather isn’t cooperating.
Cold houses don’t sell, so make sure the heat is cranked up to a comfortable temperature. If potential buyers are shivering in your house, they’re most likely not going to feel comfortable and be able to think of it as their potential new home. Now is not the time to cut spending on electricity.
Additionally, if there’s snow, make sure your driveway and sidewalks are shoveled and salted. First of all, you don’t want to inconvenience your guests by making them trek through the snow or slip and slide their way into your house. And secondly, you don’t want anyone slipping and getting hurt. Not only can this cause legal issues but it will most likely deter them from further considering putting an offer on your house.
Another great way to catch the interest of potential buyers is by building a snowman! Seeing as how 32% of buyers are looking for their first home, it’s important to show them what it would be like living in the house themselves. And who doesn’t want to be greeted by a friendly snowman?
While cookies are a popular open house snack, you may want to offer some more winter-related foods. By serving chili, stew, or soup, you’re not only offering your guests a yummy treat, but you’re also giving them a reason to stay longer. And when they stay longer, they might notice additional details or ask more questions. Additionally, hot apple cider or hot chocolate both make excellent beverage choices.
One negative thing about selling in the winter is not being able to show off your yard if it’s covered in snow. Not only does landscaping increase the aesthetics of your property, but you could get an ROI of 150% if you spend as little as 5% of your home’s value on landscaping projects. If your yard is covered in snow, make sure you clearly mark your property lines so visitors can get a sense of the land. And if you get lucky and the climate allows for it, leave outdoor furniture out so potential buyers can get a feel for the outdoor space.
And last but not least, make sure your home has plenty of light throughout. Opening shades and curtains will allow daylight to flood in during the day but will also give off a warm and cozy mood at night. Make sure you find the most flattering hues for your living space and ensure there are no bulbs out.
When planning an open house for the winter, it’s important to remember that you can’t control the weather. So while you may get lucky and have great weather, it’s important to be prepared for whatever mother nature may throw at you.