Ask the Property Expert
Top Tips for Selling your home in the Winter
By Scott Gallacher Senior Negotiator at Hennings Moir 01752 850440 www.henningsmoir.com
As winter looms ever closer, many face a difficult decision about selling their home. Buyers, though do not think twice about the search for their perfect home be that in the summer or winter and go online viewing property all year round. Here are some top tips for those looking to sell over the winter months.
CREATE A GOOD FIRST IMPRESSION
Everyone knows that you cannot re-create a first impression and so it really does count. Ensure when your estate agent visits your home to take photos that the outside of your property is looking every bit as good as the inside. Kerb appeal is vital, especially in the winter months when your property and garden are not blessed with the summer sun.
Replace frost bitten plants with winter safe, colourful, fresh plants such as pansies, violas and primrose bedding plants. A burst of colour in your garden can make all the difference to a drab rainy day!
Ensure gates are well oiled and will not squeak upon opening and are able to shut properly without force. Clean your driveway and paths by removing any slippery moss patches and wet leaves.
Check garden and security lights are in good working order, and position in such a way that they will not ‘dazzle’ viewers as they approach your front door. Hire someone to clean the gutters and paint the outside of the house if it is looking somewhat neglected.
HAVE A WELCOMING ENTRANCE
If buyers have made the effort to travel in poor weather conditions, you should make the effort to welcome them, in whatever way is possible. Place a new and clean door mat at the front door for viewers to clean their sodden boots on before entering your pristine home.
Do you have somewhere suitable to hang coats or place wet umbrellas? Not every viewer will want to part with their cosy coats but you should still offer the assistance.
Keep your property warm and have a fresh pot of coffee brewing to create a subtle aroma. Puff up the cushions on the couch and have a roaring fire welcoming your viewers into the living-room if you have one.
NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL LIGHTING
No one is going to want to spend long in a property that is dull, dark and dismal, so whenever possible keep curtains and blinds open to let in as much natural day light as possible. If your viewings are during the evening and it is blowing a gale outside, close them over. Either way combine the natural light with your own lights to create a bright and airy feel to each room.
CAREFUL ON THE CRIMBO DECOR!
If you are selling during the Christmas period, beware! Whilst you and your family may love nothing more than to watch Rudolf and Co. disco dance to a merry tune, have tinsel hanging from every lamp, door, wall and unit, don’t over do it with the Crimbo decor! Clutter is not clean, the look you should be aiming for here is clean not cluttered!
REARRANGE THE FURNITURE
The more space people have to walk around, the better. Children’s toys, dog or cat beds can all be put elsewhere in time for your viewings. Large items of furniture should always be placed in such a way as not to detract from the size of the room. If your buyer has to step over things, or squeeze by furniture to access another room they are not very likely to focus on your property and more likely to focus on the hazard that is in their way.
As much as arranging viewings can be time consuming and demanding remember this is the stepping stone to your new home. You need to put on a happy face and walk around with each viewer smiling and chatting. Otherwise arrange for your estate agent to conduct the viewings, any reputable estate agent will be more than happy to accommodate.
Once your viewings are over, that pot of freshly made coffee is all yours! Put your feet up and relax with the knowledge that you have done a good job and your home was presented in the best way possible.
Good luck with the sale of your home!